‘Why I won’t buy from you’

It isn’t the economy, low-balling competitors or poor quality keeping your company from turning prospects into customers. Consultant John Graham explains what really causes the problem.

Here’s his open letter to companies whose salespeople dropped the ball — or dropped a bucket of balls.

You’re wondering why I’m not doing business with you.  Perhaps you think I wasn’t serious or was just another “tire kicker” when I gave you an appointment.

Well I am serious and I’m gong to buy – but not from you.

I want you to know why you left me cold:

  • You pushed until you could get in front of me.
  • You did nothing to motivate me to talk with you.
  • Why should I spend time with you?
  • What do you offer that I can’t get elsewhere?
  • You’re not really interested in me or what I want to accomplish.
  • You don’t see me as a long-term customer, someone who will be doing business with you over the next 10 years.
  • You don”t think about what you can do for me.
  • You see me strictly as a buyer, someone to sign the order so you can get a commission.
  • You’ll move on as soon as your make the sale.
  • You only want to get the order and go on your way.
  • You don’t return calls promptly and get me the information I need to make a decision.
  • You waste my time by calling without clear purposes, especially on a busy day.
  • If I were only interested in buying a product or service, I would pick up a catalog and call a toll-free number.
  • I won’t hear from you until you want to make another sale.
  • You’re good at agenda-setting. But it’s always your agenda, not mine.
  • The particular product or service you’re selling is only useful as a means of getting an order out of me. You don’t consider my needs.
  • You’re poor at follow-through. You never got me the information I requested after our first meeting.
  • Your talent is figuring out what I will buy, not what I need to make my job easier or my company more competitive.
  • You’ve taken all the popular classes on how to “psych out” prospects and get them to buy.
  • You’ve learned how to look confident and composed, even when you’re stomach is rolling because you’re ill-prepared.
  • You concentrate on trying to locate my “hot buttons” and then focus your attention on pushing them.
  • You think sales-driven is where it’s at. It isn’t.
  • You’re always looking for good leads, but you can’t recognize one when you see it. A good lead is someone who needs what you’re selling.
  • Good leads are cultivated by spending time understanding customers, communicating your capabilities and continuously educating them to the benefits of doing business with you and your company.
  • Be customer-driven if you want me to buy from you.

0 thoughts on “‘Why I won’t buy from you’”

  1. How does one address the issue of gross mismanagement by the owner of the company? My clients are slowly drifting away due to increased quote and service times. The problems stem from the owner being totally oblivious to the true nature of our market and the technologies we provide. His family have mentioned concern that his mental state is questionable. In the last eight years, the company has lost ten full-time positions and almost all of our repeat client base.

    How do I explain to my clients that the boss has mismanaged several accounts and that the deposits they paid (at times six figures) were used to pay back debt instead of ordering parts? How do I explain that I am able to manage the project up until the checks are cut but out of the loop after that?

  2. Adam,

    I would like to address some of the issues you brought up; including your comment “my clients are slowly drifting away”. Being in sales for a number of years I realize it takes a lot of work to acquire and retain valuable clients some of which over time become close friends, but be careful not loose site that your ability to develop these relationships may have been part of why you were hired on in the first place, “your” clients are also clients of the company you currently work for.

    Most of the successful companies I have worked for over the years operated as a team, when it appeared a member of the team was having difficulties other members would jump in to lend a hand and get the team back on track. It sounds like you have a good insight on your market perhaps somewhat better than your college as you are out in the field, however I would also bet that your colleague (boss is such a isolated word) has equally valuable information that may provide you with additional insight into internal operations and he would probably appreciate any positive insight you or other members have to offer.

    I would highly recommend that you do what you can to help your company and retain the clientele you and your company have so worked hard for, the fastest way to loose both and put yourself out on the street is to “explain to clients that the boss has mismanaged several accounts” whether true or unfounded. Open conversation and brain storming within any organization is vital and I think you will find that most will listen to good ideas and suggestions.

  3. IT all comes down to caring about the customer and giving and giving value up-front without expecting anything in return. Relationships built on giving and receiving value — the key to sales success!

  4. IT all comes down to caring about the customer and giving value up-front without expecting anything in return. Relationships built on giving and receiving value — the key to sales success!

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