Sales Language Is an Art- Here’s How to Master It
Which is the most active team in any company? The sales team, no doubt about it. Between making calls and attending meetings, a lot of talking happens. It is natural for this talk to leak into their sales conversations too. Sales jargon is not limited to the board room, it even infiltrates daily life! The reason there are certain words and phrases used in sales conversations is because it is easier to get your message across, but abusing it and using it relentlessly is why they have become so hated today.
Should you be using them at all?
It is really necessary to use technical terms on a sales call? Does it really impact your chances of scoring a win? Does it make you look smarter? These are questions to which there are no definite answers. What we understand is that it is up to us to use them, and to what degree they need to be used. A man who uses complex words and doesn’t know what they really mean is only trying to bluff and distract. This is understood well and good by anyone capable of purchasing anything of importance. So, our take is that if you truly understand what you are saying and know where and when it needs to be used, go right ahead, but, don’t do it to sound knowledgeable and sophisticated. It is only going to blow up in your face.
There are certain trigger words that have a negative impact on your sales call. This is because we really don’t understand their true meaning and the psychological effect it has. For example, the word ‘proud’ is used every time we achieve something or someone else does it, to which we are associated. Do you know the meaning of this word? “A feeling of deep pleasure or satisfaction derived from one’s own achievements, the achievements of one’s close associates, or from qualities or possessions that are widely admired.” Do we realize that it has a self centered ring to it? It is akin to being egotistical and boastful. We can use words such as pleasure, gratification and others to replace it. This is just an example of how words have become so common that we do not realize their real meaning.
Moving on to sales conversations, here are some words that have either been used too much, or used in the wrong context, and how you can replace them with better alternatives.
HOPE- You aren’t sure of yourself when you say this. Be clear about what you want, hoping is not akin to doing.
CHEAP- It is a cheap word, undermining you, your product and your business. Avoid it. Use alternative like lower, viable and so on.
PROSPECT- Keep this word within your board meetings and reports. No one likes to be called a prospect, use personal attributes.
FORBIDDEN- Negative as can be; avoid it fully.
COMPETITOR- This is a highly flammable word. Using this can cause trouble. Instead, if you really do have to use your competitor in your conversation, use their name, and avoid comparisons.
HONESTLY- It nullifies everything you have said up until now as a lie.
OBVIOUSLY- This is seen as condescending and sarcastic at worst. Try to avoid this completely.
TURN-KEY- This is technical and doesn’t mean anything to a decision maker other than making you look like you are trying to avoid explaining something.
MAYBE- Not a good way to establish confidence.
OTHERWISE- Is a warning word, meaning you are stating the prospect will lose or is a fool.
CHALLENGE- This is a high intensity word. Mellow it down.
MANIFEST- Too abstract for a sales call.
There are many such words that are tossed around that don’t make any sense and do not add any reasonable value to the conversation.
The way to go about doing a good job at sales conversations is to keep it simple, easy and understandable. People do not like being spoken to like a child, and they also do not want to hear you trying to impress them. You need to find what they need, see if your product/service is capable of providing a solution and work out a price that works for both of you. Depending on the industry you work in, you need to tune your sales vocabulary accordingly. Use technical words only when it is an industry standard and is clearly understood by the receiver. No matter who is listening, be it the CEO, or the supply manager, everyone is a human. No one remembers you for the big shot words you use, but the ability to solve problems.
Traditionally, the slick salesman was a silver tongued fox who could get into your living room and sell you a sofa while sitting on one. This doesn’t work anymore. People are wary of what you say, and they know exactly what they want. Trying to put up a façade of knowing it all is not going to end well.
If there are any more sales reject words you want to add to the list, please go ahead and let us know in the comments!