Don’t Be SHY When It Comes To Your Sales
profits within your grasp that cost little to collect, if anything at all.
You can cash in on more sales today when you recognize the numerous missed
opportunities for you and your company that are lost to shyness. Every day,
there are occasions that mean profit or merely the passing of another moment
WITH YOUR EXISTING CUSTOMERS
The most precious and under-utilized asset is most frequently existing
clients. Why are we so shy to ask them for more? They are treated as
“already sold” while we go off looking for new ones. In fact, it’s not rare
to hear negative references to the very livelihood of a business and what a
“pain” customers can be. Silly notion, but the sad truth.
Upselling and Cross-Selling
The moment a prospect turns into a customer, you’ve won a level of trust. If
you respect that trust and deliver consistence and quality, then you have
the opportunity to CONTINUALLY offer them new products or different levels
of service and support. Opportunity is lost when additional sales are not
made to the group that is easiest and cheapest to resell. Why be shy with
people you already know?
Your customers are your best salespeople. But, you have to activate
and motivate them to become your lead generation assistants. Again, this is
not only cost-effective but easy. There are numerous times when you can
invite clients to refer your company from client appreciation events to
technical support and customer service calls.
Excellent Customer Service
If you’re not talking with your customers regularly, you’re out of touch. So
many companies only call when they have the next upgrade or product to sell.
The customers only feel that you want them for their money -- and they’re
The telephone is your best prescription for this symptom of shyness,
followed closely by e-mail, which is less personal. Frequent contact breeds
familiarity, trust and confidence with your customer base. It also creates
the most valuable business asset in the world -- relationships!
Networking is a natural environment for introducing yourself and your
enterprise to new contacts. Yet many people attend various events and remain
shy and less interactive than they should.
Trade Shows & Conferences
These events are powerful and opportune times to collect fresh contacts. The
shortfall here is that many only have their eyes open for new “customers.”
During breaks at conferences or slow traffic times at trade shows, you must
proactively introduce yourself to industry colleagues who serve the same
clients you do. Find complementary products that identify sales prospects or
cause them to seek you out. If you’re selling headsets to call centers, it
doesn’t hurt to get to know the ergonomic office furniture people, for
I just attended an Internet marketing conference in Cleveland and observed a
lost opportunity as I was leaving the hotel. In the elevator, there were two
gentlemen on the way down to a financial services conference. They had on
the same badges with their printed names. Both had body language and facial
expressions that implied they wanted to introduce themselves, but they did
not. It was so obvious that I was tempted to speak up and act as an
It doesn’t hurt to have your 30-second elevator speech ready to go any time.
You should be able to introduce yourself and explain your unique value
proposition, while arousing curiosity, in this very short period. You don’t
have to sell them in 30 seconds -- just introduce yourself and get invited
to talk more. Be prepared to offer it on airplanes, at meetings, speaking
engagements, on the phone or at social events.
Don’t have a punch-clock mentality. If you’re not at work, your antennae
should always be up for opportunity. If you’re at a wedding, it is not rude
to exchange business cards for later contact. I am speaking about doing this
during the reception and not while the couple are exchanging vows, of
course. As long as you’re understated and don’t pull out a sales
presentation flip chart, social events are excellent venues where you get a
chance to connect.
Don’t be shy about your successes or challenges in our industry. Use public
relations as the public forum that it is to step up and announce your
triumphs or to address the issues faced by your industry or by your
Step into the spotlight as often as you can. Press releases are invitations
to various media to pay attention to you. Whether it’s print, radio or TV,
they’re looking for interesting stories and angles to educate and entertain
their audience. If you’re shy here, you won’t get any attention. You must
offer them something that IS newsworthy, however. For example, unless it’s a
very specific industry publication, it is not news that you’re releasing
Version 3.2.05 of your printer driver or you meet the latest 802.11
If you are targeting specific verticals or there are awards for your own
industry, you should apply to all that are appropriate. Be proud of your
achievements and your contribution to society. By sharing and showing your
pride, albeit humbly, you attract customers who are seeking leadership and
confidence to solve their problems. Awards and accolades in the media are
superb third-party references to your professionalism and quality. What
better way to create credibility and customer confidence?
Overcoming a moment of shyness means there won’t be money missed.
Otherwise, you’re not getting maximum leverage from all opportunities before
you. If you recognized comments in this column similar to your experience,
write out some immediate action items and priorities to be addressed in your
business. Bring it up at your next sales or marketing meetings. “Faint heart
never won fair maiden,” just like shy people and strategies don’t win
customers. Take every chance you can to introduce yourself and your company
to everyone you can. Be loud and proud.
Martin Wales is a business development and lead generation specialist. For
a FREE preview of his new audio program, How to Get The Mindset of A Customer Catcher
for Maximum Leverage & Profit, send an e-mail to Mindset@CustomerCatcher.com.