If you are someone who does not like selling then pre-selling is definitely something you should be looking at integrating into your sales technique. It is one of my favourite Soft Selling strategies.
Sometimes certain things are easier to sell when your prospect has heard about it before, ideally from many different sources. For example, they may have read an article, seen a promotion, and perhaps heard a couple of people talk about it. Maybe someone has raved on about how your services have really helped their business. The prospect at that point is not necessarily interested in buying but their interest is piqued, even if only a little. When we come along and start talking about what we do then the prospect is more receptive because it is familiar and they have heard good things. They are pre-sold.
Referrals, when done well, work on the basis of pre-selling. Someone who the prospect knows, likes, and trusts recommends you to them and sings your praises. When you arrive at a meeting the prospect is already sold on you and your services – at least a little. It makes the whole process easier even though you still need to follow your sales process.
Another way of using pre-selling, which I find incredibly powerful, is selling something that your client cannot buy yet. This is for existing clients where you have a good trusted relationship rather than someone you don’t really know. When you are catching up with a client and they are asking you what you have been up to lately you tell them about a new service you have been working on and pay attention to see if there is any interest. You can tell by the way they respond or if they ask you questions. If there is some kind of interest then promise to keep them updated. Once it is available for sale they are likely to be amongst your first clients!
As long as you are just talking about what you are doing rather than actually selling to them then they won’t feel like they are being sold to.
Pre-selling can also be used for getting referrals and testimonials too. You pre-sell a future conversation about referrals and testimonials just after you have won the sale and check its ok to have a conversation with them about referrals and testimonials once they are happy with your work. If you phrase it correctly you will get a lot more referrals and testimonials and when the time comes to ask you will find it so much easier.
Why not see how you can integrate pre-selling into your sales approach?