Do you often find yourself in desperation when it comes to hitting your sales target?

Desperation is one trait that never looks good on anyone. As a salesperson, you may think that it may help you generate sales but, it does the opposite. It drives prospects away, hurting any chance of a sale.

So you are probably wondering how you can avoid turning into a desperate salesman as your sales cycle comes to a close?

It is all in the approach you take, it starts with your mental preparation which translates into your action and how you communicate with clients. You will find that when you implement the 10 tips we have highlighted; it will have a positive impact on your sales. Much more than a desperate approach would.

When a customer comes across a desperate salesman, they are automatically put off by the experience. Even if they are selling the best of solutions, the desperation will likely turn the customer away.

Think about it, how do you feel when you go out shopping and you have a pestering salesperson constantly follow you around? You usually end up walking out of the store immediately. This example is referring to a B2C experience. When it comes to B2B companies, the salesman is supposed to be even more professional.

How you interact with your customer is very important to them. The interaction determines whether or not they want to go with you or someone else for the solution. As soon as a prospect will sense any desperation in a salesperson, they will likely ask to be given some more time to make a decision.

That is because no one likes to be hurried into making a decision. So don’t ruin the relationship between you and the lead just because you desperately need a sale. It is better to get the sale at a later point than never…

How to Avoid Being a Desperate Salesman Tip 1: Don’t Think That Every Lead That Signs Up is Interested

You can’t chase every single lead, thinking that they are immediately interested in the solution your company offers. You need to ask the right question to determine what their needs are and take it from there.

Many salesmen make the mistake of assuming that if someone signs up, they are automatically interested in purchasing a service. They go into “sales mode” and try to pitch everything. This makes them appear desperate. It shows the customer that the salesman cares more about making a sale than actually helping them out.

So before you make any sales pitch, ask them what kind of solution they need and what their pain points are? This will help you determine which one of your solution will add value to their business. Which is the only thing the customer is interested in. Doing so will help you build a relationship with the customer and avoid looking like a desperate salesman.

How to Avoid Being a Desperate Salesman Tip 2: Never Rely Heavily on Cold Calls for Leads

If your only way of generating leads is through cold calls, then there is no way around being perceived as desperate. It is just the approach to cold calling that has a salesperson desperately go after sales. While cold calling may be effective, there are other ways to generate leads that are just as, if not more, effective.

The one downside about cold calling is that there isn’t much relationship building in the process with customers. Plus, if you don’t get any interest, you start becoming desperate. That is why you need to open up as many possible avenues for lead generation.

Look into social selling, key account targeting, and other such tactics that will help with lead generation. Once the leads start to flow in, there will be no need for you to become desperate because you will have plenty of leads to target.

How to Avoid Being a Desperate Salesman Tip 3: Know the Difference Between a “Hard” and “Soft” No

A salesperson should know the difference between a “hard” no and a “soft” no. They usually come across the two when they first approach a lead. A “hard no” refers to when a client clearly is not interested in your solution. While a “soft no” means they are either too busy to discuss or need a little more time to ponder over your solution.

The best way to determine which one of the two your client is referring to is to ask the right question. Ask them whether they are too busy to discuss right now or just don’t believe in the value your solution has to offer them?

Whatever their answer may be, ask them for a better time you could call to discuss the actual value your solution offers. If they give you the time, consider it a “soft” no. However, if the lead still says I am not interested, it is better to let them go.

You should never resort to begging them for a time to follow up because, at this point, that will not help. Begging is very unprofessional and will not get you anywhere.

How to Avoid Being a Desperate Salesman Tip 4: Listen and Understand the Client’s Needs

One sure way of looking like a desperate salesman is by jumping to conclusions when it comes to what the client needs. The customer mentions that they have a specific pain point. Rather than hearing them out, you automatically jump to a solution that can help them.

The process of sales has certain steps that shouldn’t be skipped. Clients like to be heard and want to know that you are actually interested in helping them. Never make any assumptions, you need to first understand what their overall needs are. As you listen to them more, not only do you develop a relationship, you can also determine whether a better solution may be more suitable for them. Which can result in a higher value of sale for you.

So learn to talk less and listen to your customers. This will help you develop an understanding of what the lead wants are and pitch accordingly.

How to Avoid Being a Desperate Salesman Tip 5: Never Offer More Than What You Can Deliver

A mistake most desperate salesman make is to overcommit to customers. They usually exaggerate or straight out lie about what is on offer with the solution. All, just to convert the sale. While this may seem like a harmless approach at first, it usually comes to haunt the salesperson later on.

Such commitments give clients higher expectations which usually aren’t met. Which results in them either opting out of the service later on or constantly requesting their expectations are met. In either case, it ends up hurting the organization.

How to Avoid Being a Desperate Salesman Tip 6: Never Issue an Ultimatum

An ultimatum has a similar effect on customers as begging does. When a salesperson has no other avenue they resort to giving clients an ultimatum. That they won’t leave or end the call until the customer decides to purchase the solution.

The relationship between you and the customer is not at a personal level. So an ultimatum will never work. Unless, the organization you work for is the only one that offers the solution the client needs, which is highly unlikely. Issuing an ultimatum will only ensure that the client seeks another service provider for their needs.

How to Avoid Being a Desperate Salesman Tip 7: Becoming More Accommodating Than Required

There is a difference between a salesperson and a servant. While you are there to help the customer figure out what solution can add value to their business, it doesn’t mean you bend over backward to do so. This particular tip sort of ties in with the 5th tip, you should know where your boundaries are and never exceed them.

If you feel a client is asking for too much or expects too much from you, let them know. Don’t commit to things you can’t deliver. You should also make sure that the client respects and values you and your time.

They should stick to the discussed meeting times and if they aren’t available, inform you beforehand. Just because they have shown interest in a solution doesn’t mean they can take advantage of you.

How to Avoid Being a Desperate Salesman Tip 8: Know When to Take a Hint

A sure sign of desperation is not taking a hint. Someone doesn’t want your service, yet you keep bombarding them with emails and calls. The majority of leads you get will probably not end up opting for your service.

No one has a 100% conversion rate.

But don’t ruin all your leads due to desperation. There are still 30-40% of them that you can convert. So you want to approach them properly.

If you constantly email or call a client and get no response from them. It’s time you let them go. You don’t need to waste your energy on leads that aren’t interested. Take the hint and move on. You are better off using that energy on those leads that have a chance to convert.

The difference between a desperate salesman and a good one is that the good one knows how to identify and move on from leads that are not interested.

How to Avoid Being a Desperate Salesman Tip 9: Manage Your Time and Leads Well

A salesperson is only successful when they have exceptional management skills. They know how to manage both their time and leads. They know which leads require their time and which don’t.

Managing their time allows them to make sure they have their priorities in order. So they can achieve their targets well before time, so there is no desperation towards the end of the month or sales cycle.

As far as leads go, they are aware when their lead pipeline is slowly draining. They never let it completely drain out. This is done by employing the right lead generating tactics so there is a steady flow of leads.

Wasting time is a big no, so low-quality leads aren’t given much importance. This allows them to manage their work in an efficient manner. Which results in them never truly turning into a desperate salesman.

How to Avoid Being a Desperate Salesman Tip 10: Have Faith in Yourself

Even the best of sales professionals may come across hard times. You can have all the skills but if a bit of luck isn’t on your side, chances are you won’t be able to hit your target. Which is completely fine from time to time. It doesn’t mean you lose your dignity and beg for sales.

You need to make sure that you don’t compromise the service you provide to the customer. Stick to your guns and if you are constantly missing out on sales then take steps to work on your craft.

Whether it is your pitch or how you approach each customer. Change things up and see how that effects your interaction with customers. That is much more effective than becoming a desperate salesman.

As a salesperson, you need to take all the measures you can so you don’t appear to be desperate. Desperation hurts your chances at a sale and can ruin your relationship with a client. Even if they get the slightest hint of desperation in your tone, they will begin to doubt you, your pitch, and the actual service you can offer.

You won’t find many, if any, customer that actually enjoy working with a desperate salesman. So you want to make sure you follow our 10 tips so you can avoid coming off as one. Doing so will help you excel as a salesperson.


Ollie uses social selling every day to learn and develop new ways to create conversations and reach prospects. Outside of the office he's an avid Liverpool FC fan and regularly watches his local football team play or plays pool every week. You can connect with Ollie on Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.

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