Urgent Calls to Action

I got a call the other day which was so classic that it was almost laughable. But it inspired me to write this post.

Having been involved in selling some billion and a half dollars of products and services over the past 20 years, I have somewhat of a unique perspective on what it takes to sell products or, said differently, what it takes to refrain from purchasing products you really do not want or need.

Assuming there really is a needs case for a particular product, the single most effective call to action for the sale of the product revolves around a particular set of circumstances in which there is an urgent need to purchase now.

The urgent need might have been positioned under any number of factors, such as:

· Scarcity of product;

· Scarcity of offer;

· External influences such as bankruptcies, foreclosures, RTC, close-outs and the like;

· The offering is a unique opportunity given only to special individuals such as the buyer;

· And so forth and so on.

The bottom line is that the offer needs to truncate the decision making process into a very finite, or immediate time frame. We used to call it the “blue moon special.”

I’m not observing this as a critical third party. I am simply saying that from my experience as an active participant in the process of crafting sales and marketing campaigns, a key element was always a particular need for urgent action.

With that said, a few precautionary thoughts are in order.

1. There is virtually never an urgent offer that actually relates to the product itself. Almost all urgent offers have to do with a sales technique, not the product.

2. While fear of losing out is always a motivating characteristic of human behavior, fear of losing is worse. Hence, don’t allow the fear of losing out to precipitate an action which results in an actual losing.

3. There is no sense of urgency that cannot be calmed by breathing deeply through the nose and suspending judgment, at least for the period of time it takes for you to regain control.

At the end of the day, response to the seller’s urgency manifests best by a respectful desire to evaluate and respond to the seller within a reasonable period of time in order to evaluate the intrinsic benefits of the product divorced from the need to act immediately.

If that is acceptable to the seller, there is a mutual win regardless of the time it took to make the decision. If it is not acceptable to the seller, then it’s far better to let the offer pass and start anew. Said differently, if a quick decision is critical in a purchase and sale transaction, assume your answer should almost always be “no”.