Too many people are in the business of convincing others they’re wrong and criticizing their opinion.
It doesn’t work, and it’s a source of a lot of tension in this country today – both business and otherwise.
In this article, I wanted to talk about a concept for sales success that I’m struggling to see others talk about. It’s a big reason behind why people struggle to get others to buy into them – whether it’s trying to change someone’s mind, or sell them on a product.
Everyone has “tips” or “techniques” for turning a “no” into a “yes” in sales, but few people talk about this reality. You can’t sell someone who’s not ready to be sold.
This is such a big reason why most people aren’t winning – it’s because they’ve created this narrative in their heads about how they “need” to partner with a specific CEO or sell to a specific company.
The truth is, there are a million reasons why a specific executive or a certain company won’t work with you.
They might not work with even if everything “on paper” is going your way. You might have the better product. You might have a cheaper price. And they still might not work with you.
There are so many other factors in play. You never know – maybe their brother-in-law is married to the CMO of the agency they use so they’re putting off hiring a different one. Maybe the investors in their company have a different agenda and want to hire someone else. Maybe they’re dealing with personal issues at home and they’re just having a bad day.
The truth is, you don’t even have full 100% context on what’s going on in your own spouse’s mind. No one does. How will you know what’s going on in any other person’s head?
You have to be practical when it comes to sales. You have to be willing to take the opportunities in front of you and understand who you should spend your time on.
Of course I want to work with every Fortune 100 brand, but because of the market dynamics, and complicated politics that are in play, it’s easier said than done.
I come into every business meeting feeling massively optimistic that the person on the other end is going to buy from me. And when they don’t, I immediately “check out.” I’m not romantic about it.
Even when I try to sell wine or sneakers, I have no interest in “convincing” people to buy. I’m comfortable asking, but if you don’t normally buy wine, I’m not trying to push you to buy Empathy Wines. You don’t normally buy sneakers, I’m not trying to convince you buy mine.
I’m comfortable asking for a sale, but I’m also comfortable moving on because I have zero expectations about how the results will play out.
This is a more effective way to go about it.
When someone doesn’t want to change their mind or says “no”, I don’t try to convince them or turn their “no” into a “yes.”
Instead, I double down on my truth. I keep putting out content talking about what I believe about Instagram and Facebook marketing. We’ll keep adding value to CMOs through VaynerMedia’s new podcast. Back when I was doing Wine Library TV, I said what I really believed about the wines I tasted on camera. If I didn’t like the wines my friends were selling, I would say it.
It wasn’t always easy, but the thing I believe in the most is that the truth always wins.
Telling your truth can put you in a position to be historically correct, which leads to more people trusting you over the long term. It can also attract people who also believe what you believe, and can lead to enormous sales success.
Let people come to you – stop trying to convince them.
Check out this business strategy and Q&A session for more on this:
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