There is a very thin line company owners walk on when it comes to selling their business and services to their clients; be it B2B or B2C. The natural action of most is to oversell their positive factors of their business, in an attempt to prove that there is no one better than them to handle the job.
As a business owner, your drive and ambition are what make your business successful. However, it is possible for the very ambition that helps you achieve your goals to become a detriment. Overselling is an easy mistake to make – one that can put your business reputation at risk,
Unfortunately what most people do not realize is that the cocky, i can do it all attitude is possibly is probably one of the biggest deterrents their company can face, and quite possibly their downfall, this goes for people knowing when it’s time to move on from your business also.
So many people while trying to sell a service to a client, tend to want to over promise more they can actually deliver, or more than what the client actual wants and needs. The over promising is due to the pressure to impress the client and close the deal. Or it can be as simple as the fact that your ambition simply causes you to overestimate your abilities, thus not being able to actually deliver to the client.
Who does the overselling hurt?
- Your Client:Most likely your client has heard about you and has approached you for a reason, most probably in order to complete a project. That assignment may have certain requirements and criteria that need to be followed, with a deadline. When you set the expectations too high and are unable to deliver on your promise, your most likely hurting your clients project and your reputation at the same time.
- Other Clients: Having not been able to deliver on the first clients work and by blowing deadlines, will most probably put you into overdrive to try and achieve some of the targets, thus hurting your other clients that you have ended up ignoring, due to your unrealistic standards. Therefore, your other accounts will lag as well.
- Your Business: In order to meet those deadlines, you end up with the tough choice of letting your quality suffer or fail to meet the unrealistic deadlines you had placed for yourself. Unfortunately neither of those two options will leave you with a satisfied customer, just like you have the right to receive the agreed upon fees for the job, your client expects you to deliver all that you had promised.
“Avoiding overselling is simple: be realistic, and be honest. Take a realistic look at your current obligations, including those in your personal life and ask yourself: If I take on this project, will I be able to dedicate the necessary time to it? Do I have the qualifications to complete this project to the standards the client expects and deserves?
Being honest with yourself also means being honest with your client. Dont let the pressure to meet or exceed their expectations lead you to agree to take on projects you know you dont have enough time for, or to claim expertise in areas youre only vaguely familiar with.
If you find yourself in this situation, consider referring the client to a follow consultant who you trust as an expert resource.”
We Said This: Most likely when you oversell yourself and do not deliver you’ll end up losing the client indefinitely.