dodgy car salesmanIn this article we are going to tell you how to improve the way you sell using online video. The nature of ‘sales’ has changed and we are going to explain those changes and what they mean for you and your videos.

How selling has changed

When we think about selling and sales people, it is quite common to think of the sleaze, cheese, and slime of old school selling. Many of us are afraid of selling and we are afraid to be associated with what we imagine sales to be. These prejudices are based on a few core myths about selling:

1) Pushy people: there is a myth that the people who go in to sales are pushy, aggressive and dishonest. There is also an idea that people go into sales because they weren’t up to scratch for other more skilled, intellectual careers.

2) The myth of ‘natural’ sales people: There is an idea that some people were born to sell. There is no such thing as a natural seller. Selling is made up of lots of different skills which can be developed over time and refined with hard work.

3) Selling is unethical/immoral: We often think of being conned when we think of sales people.

Unfortunately, some of these myths are actually based on a past reality. When information wasn’t flowing as freely as it is now, through the Internet and our many devices, the seller always had more information than the customer. This placed the balance of power in the hands of the sellers, which meant that they could spin information for their own purposes – ultimately to make a sale. It is obvious that this has changed. Now, customers are savvy and aware. They do their research before making purchases and they have more options to choose from than ever before.

The consequence of the shift in information power is that the nature of selling has changed dramatically. As well as for moral reasons, self-interest is also an incentive for sellers to be honest and transparent. Businesses cannot afford to play dirty because disgruntled customers will make them pay for it. Customers now have more power to take action that will affect the reputation of businesses – whether positively or negatively. They can share the good and the bad with their thousands of Facebook friends or Twitter followers, to name but a few examples. So, sellers have to have integrity in how they work with customers.

The new salesperson

Firstly, it is worth pointing out that sales isn’t solely the remit of the people with ‘sales’ in their job titles. We all sell. We do it in our personal lives and our professional lives regularly – we just don’t label it that way.

The new sales person needs a whole tool box of skills. It is not the case that being pushy, persuasive and bolshie is enough to be a successful seller. Firstly, the new sales person talks like a human being and they treat others like human beings. The new sales person can wear their customers’ shoes and see things from their perspective – identifying their problems and quickly identifying how they can design solutions for them. The new sales person has integrity and will negotiate a deal that both parties feel they have benefited from – in other words, ‘win-win’ deals.

How to translate this to your online videos

The big question is: how do you translate this to your online videos?
It is simple when you know how. Your videos need to focus on providing solutions to your customers’ problems. This doesn’t necessarily mean that every video should be a problem solver video e.g. a ‘how to’ video. It may be that you use video to highlight to your customers that you understand their challenges, and that you have the know-how and expertise to support them through those challenges.

The emotional approach

In recent years there has been a lot of focus on the importance of emotional engagement in creating successful online video. It is true that most viral videos do appeal to strong emotions in viewers e.g. humour, love, fear or anger. However, there has been some research to suggest that there is a more productive approach.

The thoughts/interests approach to web video

In his new book, To Sell is Human, Daniel Pink discusses an interesting experiment that adds to this discussion. There were three different sample groups placed in a negotiation setting. The first group was asked to think about what the other person they were negotiating with was feeling when negotiating the deal. The second group was asked to think about what the other person was thinking and what their interests were. The third group was just told to get a deal. The result was that the people who were asked to think about the interests and thoughts of the other person were 50% more likely to negotiate a deal that both parties felt happy with.

In terms of your videos, it makes sense to think about your customers in this way. In business, thinking about your customers in this way should actually be slightly more systematic – e.g. you should be carrying out market research to establish what your customers interests are and what they are thinking (i.e. what are they having difficulties with, what do they need support with?). It is this information that should inform your approach to developing your products/services and, of course, marketing. This is where video comes in.

How not to sell using online video

We thought it would be nice to leave you with a classic reminder of how not to sell! The video owner does not allow embedding so please click on the image below to go to YouTube and watch – and then come back and tell us what you think in the comments.

  • For me the most impressive part is how he didn’t even catch his breath before continuing the pitch after what must have been a very painful experience.

The post Using online video to sell. The right way appeared first on Video Production & Marketing Blog |





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