"Is this any way to win friends and influence people?"

We’ve all heard the ravings and rantings about how important it is in direct sales, to “relate” – that success must be built on starting and building relationships. Sometimes they call what we do “relationship marketing.” Some say that’s why network marketing is a natural thing for women to do.

Yet, the things people are taught to say to others about their products appear to do the opposite – they tend to drive the other woman away – glazed eyes and all – even one who might have been a good match for the product (or business).

For example, one lady, when asked “What do you do?” by someone, bubbled:

“Ooh, I’m a wellness consultant! We market unique, patented, scientifically proven nutraceuticals, and blah blah blah…”

Your reaction? Read it out loud. Say it to someone else. See how they react. Any wonder people want to get away?

Indeed, hundreds of distributors report that when they say their “product script” most other people’s eyes glaze over, and they make up a fast excuse to get away. Most product scripts sound just like the one above. Full of “seller talk” and techno babble that no one cares about except the person speaking. A total turn off to normal people.

Is this anyway to start a relationship?

(Interesting aside: Without exception, EVERY student in my classes who talks like that to others about their product, the minute someone else reads their script back to them out loud, the student immediately realizes why those other people turned off and changed the subject. Now they can’t believe they’ve been talking like that all this time.)

So what to say instead?

How about telling YOUR story and asking for people like you? And get rid of the idea that you have to impress and convert every person to whom you speak, to your way of thinking about it?

How about this?

“What do you do?” Or “What do you market//sell?”

“Oh…I market a product for someone who has achy knees going up the stairs, like I used to. And they don’t want to use drugs. Do you know anyone who might like to know about a product like that?”

Say it out loud. Compare your reaction (or someone else’s) after hearing these two responses out loud.

Ladies: Doesn’t the second example mirror the “rules of engagement” that women use anyway? We tell one another a problem, and maybe something we did that helped? The script ends by asking if the other woman might know someone who’d like to know about something like that.

Gents: Doesn’t this sound more friendly and engaging to you?

To get the right mind set, try this: Think of presenting your product the way you might be looking for a tennis partner. Instead of trying to impress the other person with what you know about tennis, or insist they become a tennis player, you are letting the other person know you play tennis. And you’re looking for a game – with someone else who plays tennis.

Say you don’t play tennis. Wouldn’t you be suprised if a tennis player suddently tried to sell you on becoming a player if you weren’t one? And insisted that you SHOULD become one, and that whatever sport (if any) you WERE playing now was not as good, as tennis?


Is that how you’re coming across when you present your product to someone else?

How about just asking for people like you, who might already share what is important to you or who might refer someone they know like that?

Shall we stop trying to impress and convert?

Has that been a good way to win friends and influence people?

“Seller talk” and “techno babble” are discussed in the book,
“If My Product’s So Great, How Come I Can’t Sell It?”

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Kim Klaver

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