Sell With Your Head High: Differentiation

Sell With Your Head High: Differentiation


Stop Pitching Away Your Assets For Free

I just saw this post, To Hell With The Sell by Blair Enns via my great friend Ken Jacobs who helps PR agencies grow business and develop staff.

This post resonated with me because, I have to admit, it aligns with some of the material in my book, Sales Pitches That Snap, Crackle ‘n Pop, particularly the second, third and fourth points:

  • We will replace presentations with conversations;
  • We will diagnose before we prescribe; and
  • We will re-think what it means to sell.

That last point resonates because it reinforces a timeless adage that great salespeople do not push their product, but instead facilitate the buying process; they help the buyer buy.


We Shall Hold Our Heads High

Following that, Blair moves into high gear with respect to communications and ad agencies.

The overriding theme is that if you don’t differentiate, and if you don’t proactively lead conversations, you will find yourself playing “against” your prospects as foes… and on a slanted playing field, at that.

While Blair and I define pitches a little differently, our approach is aligned.  In my book I actually say that the paradox of a pitch is that it should not feel pitchy. In early-stage opportunities, whenever you can move away from your presentation toward a customer-focused conversation, you should “ditch the pitch!”

So definitions aside (and Blair does use “pitch” in many other blog posts), I highly endorse Blair’s book, The Win Without Pitching Manifesto.

As salespeople in the B2B world, we really should hold our heads high. We should consider ourselves experts in a field where we can best help clients if we take control of the selling process, and don’t chase low-probability and low-profitability RFP’s.

Awesome stuff, Blair. You’re probably not winning all your pitches, but I bet you’re winning a healthy portion of those that are more profitable to operate and more exciting to work on!


Photo/Illustration of Blair Enns from his website, link above.