In a recent article I wrote for SitePoint, I pointed out the tendency for consultative sales types, particularly web designers, to hide behind a proposal instead of directly asking for the sale … something of which I was equally guilty:
But the fact of the matter is, I would do anything to avoid directly asking for the sale—especially if it meant I had to quote a price. Instead, I took the softer, gentler approach and buried the cost somewhere on page nine of my 10-page proposal. But after a few years, I began to grow weary of the “prepare a proposal and hope” strategy. After some struggle, I emerged with a method more effective than letting the proposal do the selling for me.
In an era where social media, Facebook, Twitter, and blogging are all the rage, it’s refreshing to find someone who actually advocates selling:
…even if you have a great website, good social media, flashy demo, great PR, nice case studies … These things don’t create conversations like they used to. You and your sales need to be a part of it…
In the same way I once relied on proposals to do my selling, companies often use blogs and social media to do their selling—forgetting that these things are actually marketing.