Why I Love to Say Selly Sell and Other Human Business Works Secrets

I used to hate to sell. Until I learned what it meant to do so. Or at least what it means when you do it well. Waffles

Selling is helping someone acquire something of value to them and capturing some part of that value for yourself in return. S. Anthony Iannarino has a much better definition, but that’s what I’ll use for now. Why? Because it’s easiest for me to get my head around it. Because that’s the best kind of selling. One of us has something useful. The other of us needs that useful thing. We exchange some kind of value. The transaction is made.

The Evolution of “Pitchy Pitch, Selly Sell.”

On my beloved newsletter, the best thing I do all week, if I’m going to sell to you, I’ll tell you right up front. Either in the subject line or in the first line of the newsletter, I’ll tell you something like, WARNING: THE FOLLOWING WILL CONTAIN A PITCHY PITCH. This elicits two responses:

  1. “I love when you say ‘pitchy pitch’ and ‘selly sell,’ because you let me know so I can decide if I’m in the mood to read it.”
  2. “I hate when you say ‘pitchy pitch’ and ‘selly sell,’ because you should be proud and unashamed of selling, if the product is worth it.”

Without fail, every time I sell and use that kind of labeling, I get that response. Oh, and I sell stuff, too. Here’s why I do it.

I want you to know every time I’m going to push more sales than content. Now, in my case, content is intrinsically tied to my selling. But in your case, it might not be. But what’s the problem in keying people into the fact that you intend to sell to them?

Know what most people’s reply is? “People might be turned off that you’re announcing that you’re selling something, so you should just gently guide them into it.” So, in other words, I should hide and conceal the fact I’m going to ask you to buy something.

The Age of “Surprising” People Into Buying Was Over a While Ago

Do people really like surprises of that nature? “Hah! You thought this was useful content, but it’s really a sales pitch! Surprise!” Cue the pinata and the people with horns. No. We don’t.

We are the smartest buyers the world has ever known. We do most of our research long before we choose to buy or not buy. And more so, in these blended content marketing channels, if there’s some question whether something is leading towards a sale or not, that just starts a little bubble in our bellies about whether we trust the person talking with us.

Will it hurt your bottom line to be clear when you’re selling? Not if you’re selling something you want. Not if you’re actually a caring person who has a product that your prospects want to buy.

And if that’s nto the case, then maybe you’re doing something a bit… well, wrong?

The Human Business Way

We believe in building sustainable, relationship-minded business. That’s why people who buy our courses tend to buy more than one. Because they know we’re in it to help. Because we’re not here to pull the rug out. Because it’s FAR more profitable and sustainable to sell to you with clear intent, so that you can choose to buy or not.

I’m proud to sell, but only because I sell this way.

Oh, and there’ll be a pitchy pitch selly sell email tomorrow (Tuesday) about my first big event of 2013. : )

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  • http://jeffkorhan.com Jeff Korhan

    A viable sales process is one that makes people comfortable – and that means letting them know what’s coming next. “Selly sell” wouldn’t work for me – but it suits your style perfectly!

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      Very good point, Jeff. : )

  • http://www.online-business-virtual-assistant.com Shily-Virtual Office Assistant

    All the best for your pitchy pitch and selly sell event. Selling is indeed giving something to a person in need of that and recieve something in return. Remember barter system, in olden days this was the medium of exchange and today it is money.

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      Precisely. I think it’s the simple mindset. : )

  • http://twitter.com/OurMarketingGuy CallTheMarketingGuy

    Good read. People just want to trust you, and feel that you will take care of them. It is your responsibility to do your job and meet their expectations. If you can accomplish that, then “selling: is easy.

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      I agree entirely. : )

  • Jan @TWOwomenANDaHOE.com

    Great read! Thanks!

    May all your gardens grow,

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      I really like that sign-off, Jan. Very cool. : )

  • Robin

    Thanks, Chris. Another stellar post from you. This is the only way to sell! Been doing it for over 30 years and everyone trusts you when you are up front. The only other thing I would add is to get supremely comfortable with the other person saying “No.” No pain, lots of gain.

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      Love it, Robin. Great way to say it! : )

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  • http://www.facebook.com/sergiy.shchedrunov Sergiy Shchedrunov

    I completely agree with you, Chris! ‘We are the smartest buyers the world has ever known.’ And the best thing to do with that is to be clear about your intentions so both you and your potential costumer feel comfortable about what is going on. That’s the only right way, I suppose.

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      One hopes. Maybe there are a few examples of other ways, but I’d be hard pressed to tell you.

  • http://fashstylo.com/

    Great and super work. May you live long.

  • http://inspiretothrive.com/ Lisa Buben

    I always think of selling as helping someone with a problem. If they don’t have a problem, you are not going to sell them anything. You need to find out what their problem is or you will not sell them anything either. It’s about solving people’s problems. :)

    • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

      Makes sense to me, Lisa. : )

  • Teresa Rose

    I agree. The best way to develop and maintain relationships it to be up front and honest. However, I never really thought about making this clear in the email subject line too. I think I’ll have to come up with different lingo though. In my field (music), “pitchy pitch” means something else entirely….

  • http://www.emilycapito.com/ Emily Capito

    Great perspective. I recently attended a “networking luncheon” that ended with a sales pitch. I was quite irritated that I paid money to get pitched a product I didn’t want and couldn’t focus on any of the speaker’s other content. If your readers trust you, they will trust your advice on products they should consider, whether it’s an event or a book. They key is trust.

  • http://twitter.com/SaleekJay Jaymi Mozeak

    My book consultant suggested I check out your blog. Thanks for the thoughts.

  • http://twitter.com/SusanGiurleo Susan Giurleo

    Just say,’no’ to pinatas and horns. Bad surprise… : )

  • Dave Crenshaw

    I definitely agree, Chris. One way to build trust is to be up front.

  • Cathy Tibbles

    Yep – not a fan of being manipulated by sales people or anyone for that matter. If you want something of me – just ask. You feel free to ask, I’ll feel free to answer honestly.

    Love the honesty and yet the business-mind, you’re a great example Chris! (by the way I hate disqus commenting! arggg.

  • http://twitter.com/_DavidAnderson_ David Anderson

    Good points Chris, some of the worst offenders are the “Pitch Fests” that offer a free seminar that ends up in a huge pitch for a product every 30 mins for the rest of the day..and yet people still fall for it…it can’t be good for long term trust, but they are still doing it.. do you think that model is sustainable ?

  • sophie pace

    hi chris…this is the first time i have ever commented and been verbally visible on a site like this…other than facebook, that is…i am used to everyone “covering up” their intentions to sell…as in the “old days”…and it is so refreshing to find so much information and help out there to start a company and then, market it to success…i am a writer and artist and am self-publishing my first book of many via my book launch on saturday, march 9, 2012 at the rocky river wine bar in rocky river, ohio from 4-6pm …it’s called, “when will i wear red again”…an adult cut out/coloring book for women based on a piece of prose i wrote in 1992 when i was deeply depressed AND hopeful…i received a bi-polar diagnosis in my mid 30′s and the book reflects visually and verbally my path to total health…
    it stars 4 women, ages 20-89, whose development are parts of me with some additional “imaginative enhancements”…thank you for giving me the chance to learn more from you about how to market the book more effectively…i have two more openings for attendees, so if anyone would like to attend, let me know ASAP at l_kmst.sophie@yahoo.com…there is a planned program so you must be there at 4pm for a fun time……and btw, i am offering free “limited addition” books to all guests…

  • helentfield

    before I looked at the bank draft ov $9992, I didnt believe
    that my neighbour was like they say actualie earning money part time at there
    labtop.. there sisters roommate has done this less than a year and recently
    took care of the morgage on their cottage and bought Mazda MX-5. read more at,
    jump15.comCHECK IT OUT

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  • http://www.callboxinc.com.au/ Maegan Anderson

    Creating a sense of
    trust and camaraderie with your potential customers is a fabulous way to sell
    products fast. Not only do they want to know how they might benefit from the
    product, they want to know how others have as well. Writing a personal note
    on your website stating how you benefit from using the same product will make
    them more apt to make a purchase. Great article Sir!

  • Mia Wirtshafter,Tulane Student

    It’s a nice change to
    hear your support for being up front when you’re trying to sell. Who wants to
    feel tricked into buying something? I’m more likely to trust you, and even buy
    from you if I feel like you’re being honest. It feels like a friend is
    suggesting a product and knows I would get value from it.

  • Mary G. Robinson

    I saw the check which had said $5663, I didnt believe that…my… mother in
    law had been actualey bringing home money in their spare time at their laptop..
    there sisters roommate haz done this for only twenty one months and just now
    cleard the dept on their mini mansion and bought a top of the range Honda. we
    looked here, jump15.comCHECK IT OUT

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  • Marilyn Kay

    I just attended an event for a friend last night that was billed as a “graduation celebration” for a transformative course. I knew they would be pitching the course. What I didn’t know was it really was selly sell for 3 hours, using course graduates’ testimonials, with a little bit of value-added content. The worst was when course grads were urged to sign their friends up. Fortunately, my friend didn’t even try. Not a way for me to know, like and trust the organizers. I felt they just used their grads.

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