Skip to content

Selling Sustainability? Start Here

April 18, 2014

Topics like Sustainability and Climate Change are understandably complicated, but not for the reasons you might expect.   Aside from the scientific, economic and political complexities,  populations are also often unsure about the pertinence of these topics to their own affairs.  We humans have a finite capacity for worry.  Most people are understandably preoccupied with near term personal, economic, family and daily situations.  If everyone’s Worry Bucket is always full, how do we make room to discuss  climate uncertainties, let alone selling sustainability benefits?

The Toughest Sales Job Ever?

call rejectionIs it any wonder, then, that organizations promoting sustainability solutions frequently hit a wall with their audience?   Because of my client involvement, I get almost weekly calls from inside salesreps promoting sustainability solutions.  It frustrates me to hear enthusiastic salespeople routinely commit the same amateur mistake of failing to engage or even listen before presumptuously launching into their spiel.

I suspect the rejection rate and the job turnover are unacceptably high, but it doesn’t have to be that way.  Indeed, I wish for their success!  I have helped a number of organizations improve their results in gaining mindshare and market traction.  Our combined experience, aided by the expertise of academic and scientific resources, has led us to conclude that the Sustainability conversation is in fact, er…sustainable.   Difficult conversations, begun well, have the potential to transform and win audiences, but if not begun carefully, they can actually backfire and alienate the audience, and the road back to engagement is arduous.  With so much at stake, we must begin well.

A Way Forward

We have condensed our findings into a series of free training modules, like the one embedded below.  Its begins on the topic of  developing a deep understanding of your audience.  Deep understanding goes beyond simply determining whether a person or entity is ready to listen or buy, to discovering exactly what perspective each individual brings to the discussion.  

Make sustainability sustainable (preview) from Ed Alexander

Every graphic and image in this presentation is hyperlinked to its authoritative source, so in addition to its face value as a training tool, it can also serve as a research guide. If you find it useful either way, you may wish to subscribe to this blog for future chapters and updates.

What unique challenges have you had to overcome in your efforts to engage audiences on sustainability, climate and product issues?  As always, I welcome your questions, comments and contributions. Cheers, Ed

About these ads
No comments yet

Chime in !

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 321 other followers

%d bloggers like this: