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Business Unplugged™
This blog features Carol Roth's tough love on business and entrepreneurship, as well as insights from Carol's community of contributors.

No Selling=No Clients: 6 Ways to Overcome “Fear of Selling”

Written By: Julie Steelman | No Comments

One of the leading reasons businesses fail is because entrepreneurs suffer from “F.O.S.”…Fear of Selling. You’ve been there, I’ve been there—we would rather do almost anything than make a sales call. But there are some easy fixes for the sales call blues.

Claim your sweet spot.

Your sweet spot lies at the intersection of your expertise, talent, and knowledge. It’s what you love most about yourself and your business, and what you’ve become known for. Once you’ve located your sweet spot, craft a unique message that conveys, clearly and concisely, what they’ll gain by working with you, and shows them the emotional boost they’ll get from using your products or services.

Warm up the dreaded “cold call.”

Make a list of the top 5 to 10 customers you want to do business with. Research them thoroughly, read their website, and find something about them you can relate to. Write down what you think their top challenges are and how your offerings could help them. Then, craft an opening line based on that information. When you call them, everything you say should be about why your companies have great synergy and should explain what you can do for them. That’s how you warm up a dreaded cold call!

Focus on them and take the pressure off you.

Selling is all about helping others. Start by educating your customers on how you can help them solve a problem, get more of what they want, and feel better about themselves. What you’re really doing is taking care of their needs. When you stop focusing on making a sale and turn your attention instead to serving others, it alleviates the pressure and you won’t feel as if you are selling.

Fear of selling goes away when you stop thinking of selling as a performance, a manipulation, or a hated task. Instead, think of selling as a way to share your heart, your personality, and your expertise. Think of selling as a way to serve and help your customer, a way to enhance his or her life. Once you shift your perspective, the act of selling will be as satisfying­—and safe—as helping out a friend.

Avoid getting on their nerves.

You won’t get on your customers’ nerves if you avoid three common seller mistakes: focusing on product details, rather than your customer’s emotions; delivering the entire sales story in one big run-on monologue; and trying to charm the customer into a sale. Instead, stay in the moment, listen to them, and help them enjoy the sales process, always focusing on how you can take care of their needs.

Have fun with social media.

Extend your desire to serve others and provide value into the social media world. Host fun interactive events, chats, and conversations that engage your audience and serve their needs. Provide valuable expertise. Project an online personality that’s as genuine, caring, trustworthy, and fun as you are in person.

Don’t let objections stop you.

Objections are good—customers only object when they’re considering buying from you. Are they resistant to change? Do they have confusion or misunderstanding about the value? Do they need someone else’s input or approval, such as a spouse? Or do they simply need a bit more time to decide? Just as you would with a friend, find out what their problem is and then help them solve it. No doesn’t mean never!

So as you can see, selling does not have to be a dreaded activity. What other techniques have you used to make selling more enjoyable? We would love to hear them! Please share in the comments below so that we all can benefit.

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Article written by Julie Steelman

Julie Steelman has generated more than $100 million in sales during her 30-year sales career using her unique "heart-based" selling approach. She is author of a new book, The Effortless Yes: Get the Sales You Want and Make All You'll Ever Need (Franklin-Green Publishing, 2011, www.EffortlessYes.com), featuring a 7-step approach that helps sales-averse entrepreneurs create profits by learning a new way to sell that's pleasurable and easy.