… Sales: We are all in the business of selling

Pitching to customers or reporters - you need to be prepped and draft the story they will care about

We are all in the business of selling. In my last in-house job, I was challenged to also „literally“ sell to customers. To B2B customers non the less. Cold calling will never be my favorite exercise, but I did learn a lot as I prepped. Reading about the sales process really opened my eyes to the fact that we are all in the business of selling – if we like it or not. As a recruiter, we sell the company to possible candidates; as a founder, we need to sell it to investors; and as a communicator, we sell constantly: to internal audiences, to press, to influencers and to customers.


An HBR articlabout improving sales skills lead to an “aha” moment for me. With minimal edits, I would be able to use the tips and tricks described for the sales process, in prepping communicators in a media training. Speaking to reporters is not that different to pitching to potential customers after all. Take a look at the sales do / don’t list from the HBR piece:


  • Your research. Figure out what’s important to your counterpart and what business problems they’re trying to solve.
  • Role-play your pitch with a trusted colleague and ask for feedback on ways to improve your presentation
  • Ask permission to move forward after your initial pitch by saying something like, “Are you ready to take the next step?”


  • Tense up. Relax your facial expressions and keep your body language loose.
  • Talk too much — and especially don’t brag. Focus on how you can help your counterpart.
  • Beat yourself up if you’re unsuccessful. Think big picture. Stay in touch and look for opportunities to try again.“

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