A Blog Not Limited

to web design, standards & semantics

Sales Isn’t Just Another 4-Letter Word

May 30, 2012

Published in

30 People Shaping The Web. One Thought Every Day. All Year Round. Sugar For The Mind. The Pastry Box Project

While I have a fondness for most 4-letter words, “sales” has always been pretty offensive to me. I just didn't have alot of positive impressions of sales, both as an employee in sales and marketing departments, as well as a consumer.

When I decided to work for myself, I struggled with sales. In large part due to my negative perception of it. But, as any business owner (eventually) learns, you can't avoid sales.

For my May Pastry Box contribution, I write about some of the basic sales lessons I'm learning, primarily re-defining what true sales really is.

Embracing the Sales-Side of Freelancing

I realized I needed to do something with sales this year. I started by joining some networking groups and, frankly, hating it every step of the way. The schmoozing … the elevator pitches … the suits. It all just turned me off. I liked meeting the people, but the environment is forced. It feels fake. At least to me.

And then we talked with Brad Parscale on EE Podcast. His perspective on sales and how he incorporated it into his business was a wake up call to me: “You're doing it wrong!”

Since then, I've taken time to redefine what sales means to my business and my potential clients. As I write for the Pastry Box, I'm trying a few new techniques that don't make me miserable like networking events do, and it's actually paying off.

Go read it!

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Ross's Gravatar

Ross opines:



Some interesting thoughts.  I am in the same boat, techie background but needing to put more into Sales and change my thinking about it. 

Just wondering what you define a ‘prospect’ as.  Someone who is considering you as an option already or perhaps just someone who has had no previous contact with you, but you consider could have work for you ?



Emily's Gravatar

Emily responds:


@Ross - I define a prospect as both of those people you describe. Any potential customer, to me, is a prospect, regardless of whether we’ve established contact yet. Until I have a signed contract and deposit, they are a prospect, not a client or customer.

I’ve mostly, though, worked with prospects who were already in the market for web work. I haven’t yet had much experience with cold prospects.

Best to you and thanks for reading!

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Emily Lewis

Yeah, that would be me: .

I'm a freelance web designer of the standardista variety, which means I get excited about things like valid POSH, microformats and accessibility. I ply my trade from my one-person design studio in Albuquerque, New Mexico 87106 USA.

A Blog Not Limited is my personal blog where I pontificate about web design, web standards, semantics and whatever else strikes my fancy. Head on over to Emily Lewis Design if you'd like to see my work or, even better, hire me.


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