Can We Sell Now? How About Now?
One of the more interesting questions I’ve come across over the past couple of weeks as we all get our arms around this new normal of selling in COVID-19 times is, “Is it inappropriate to talk business while all this is going on around us?”
Over the course of 24 hours, no fewer than six clients asked me that question as well as two non-customers who took me up on my invitation and got on my calendar to talk. Honestly, it was something I had not considered before they brought it up.
But, let’s talk about it …
First, understand this: No one gives a damn about printing. They didn’t before the coronavirus prices and they certainly don’t now. But like before, they do care about themselves, their business, and their challenges. It is never a bad time to talk about that!
I do get the insensitive argument, but I think there is more irrelevancy out there than inappropriate. For example …
I’ve come across a lot of emails, both personal and business, that cover subjects that are trite. No, Land’s End, I don’t care that I can get any single regular priced item for 50% off. And Eddie Bauer? It’s great you are deeply concerned about COVID-19 and thanks for the $10 off coupon, but you didn’t make my radar either.
If either of those organizations started talking to me about life after the shutdown opens back up, I might even spend some time reading the email. Where do I want to be when this is over? How much healthier might I make myself and what clothes would go along with that look?
What if you sent this message out:
“Where you want to be May 1 (or whenever this thing blows over)? You will need to ramp business back up quickly and we can help. Let’s use this downtime to create a marketing message, do the artwork, and make plans for a relaunch so that the cash register start ringing again as quickly as possible.”
Call me insensitive, but I don’t think anything in that last paragraph is offensive or poorly timed. It shows concern for the customer and there’s never a bad time for that, either.
In the end, I believe you need to go with your gut. Be authentic. If it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it. But if you have a way to help your customers, let it be known.
Or even now.
Go to BillFarquharson.com and click on the “Training” link in the header for more information or to contact Bill and discuss your sales challenges