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When pitching to prospects don’t sell your products, sell yourself.

People don’t buy into products. They buy into people. A prospect already knows what your product does. That is why they are there. They have come to gauge the person behind the promises.

Every exchange between people is based on emotion. It is why a prospect will always choose a friend over a stranger when doing business, even if it costs more. Focus on building trust. Show them that you genuinely share their vision and values.

Establish an emotional connection by empathising with their problem. Ask questions that really get to the bottom of what they want and why they are there. It is not simply enough for them to say, we want to boost revenue. Uncover what their real concerns and goals are and demonstrate that you understand their problem better than they understand it themselves.

Show that you can relate to the way they feel by being honest and humane. Embrace humour and don’t be afraid to disagree. They have come to see you in the hope that you can offer new light on the matter. If your honesty doesn’t help to serve them, don’t be afraid to let them walk away.

Clutching at straws has the potential to damage both parties.