Selling . . . by not Selling..

By Posted in - All Things Design & Design Biz Unleashed on July 20th, 2012 Dashboard

Selling by not selling?

Sounds like I am going to say something crazy here but in fact selling by not selling is something many of us should learn how to do and perhaps re-visit from time to time just to keep current and on the cutting edge. Interior design is largely about relationships and although many of the most successful among us get this principle of not-really-selling-to-sell, more than a few of us, myself included, could benefit from a sales-coaching tune-up every now and again. 

Relationship Selling

Listen Now – CONNEXION Cafe’ Soundcloud – Selling by Not Selling

 And so, at the risk of over stating yet again my continuing infatuation with Apple Computer,  I love what Carmine Gallo, international communications coach, has discovered about Apple’s selling by not selling model and shares in his new book.  Gallo pulls together some great advice, which I am going to translate for you into “designer-eez” – so listen up those of you interior design professionals who want to learn how to make more money by not selling.

In his new book,  The Apple Experience: Secrets to Building Insanely Great Customer Loyalty, Carmine unravels ten things that below average retailers need to know to be able to  sell more. I am going to  make the rest of these ten secrets design-relevant in the next several blogs.  These lessons hold true for anyone selling anything but are especially apropos for us interior designers and custom fabricators who are in and out of clients homes on a regular basis.

#1.  The first in the list is redundant but here goes: stop selling stuff.  If you want to sell more this year than last year, the wrong question to ask is “How do I sell more this year?” or “How can I increase my sales by 5% over last years sales?“.  Yep, those are the wrong questions to ask.

I am embarrassed to say that I fail this first test all the time.  Between Mike and I, this is the question I always ask and he never does. I wake up asking this question and, without some type of intervention, go to bed thinking the same thing.  I sometimes think that Apple somehow intuitively or otherwise knew how to hire only people who had this unseen, magical mindset back in the day because Mike fits the mold completely. No doubt that’s why they hired him.

Inspire them to buy!

Mike never asks “How can I sell more today?”  And when I do, he reminds me without pause with his born-this-way type of internalized response, to take a chill pill.  Keep doing what we’ve been doing,  he says – just help people;  (Well duhh!) one person, one client, one business, at a time and let the results fall where they will.  Enrich lives. as Carmine puts it. This is at the core of Apple’s belief system. It’s the blood that ran through Steve Jobs veins.  Think “what is going to really enrich this persons life?” and stop thinking about “selling” anything for a bit.  Your clients and customers feel a cosmic shift when this happens and they love the feeling of being taken care of. 

If it works for Apple, and it does, it can Apple-solutely work for you!  Stop selling!

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