Give and Take

Sep 1, 2022 | Acquisition & Sales

My mantra for the paradigm shift in sales: Be helpful!

Give, give and give – and then ask is not only a book title and a recommendation from the social media selling area, but an imperative that fits perfectly with ethical and value-based sales. Give, give and give – for example helpful articles, information, contacts, your expertise to support your prospect’s decision making. Give gladly, even without immediate return. This pays off in the medium term.

However, when negotiating prices for your offer, don’t give without taking!

Why? Giving discounts without asking for something in return from the customer is unethical, because it violates the ethical guidelines of respect and responsibility.

So price negotiations are the moment when you take something: On the one hand, a remuneration for your products or services, on the other hand, a reward for your concession on the price.

When a potential customer, who has made an informal decision in favor of you and your solution, asks you to accommodate him on price, it is first important to understand what the background for this request is. Have you worked well together and understood what the value of your service is to the customer? If the value is clear and yet the request for a price reduction comes, there may be different reasons and, accordingly, different possible solutions.

Here are some examples.

The customer had not planned a budget at all, or some budget shifts happened. Here, for example, you could look together for creative ways to draw on budgets from other departments or to create co-financing.

The customer has liquidity requirements and may not pay in this fiscal year or quarter. You can offer to postpone payment of the invoice until the next fiscal year.

If anyhow less has to be paid, then please never offer a discount without getting something in return. Here are a few examples:

  1. “Increase”. Means you give a discount for the customer buying more volume at once or signing a multi-year order or contract with you. This will save you future acquisition costs.
  2. “Downsize”. Means, for a lower price the customer gets less performance. For example, you can remove certain components from your offer, deliver more slowly, include less service, etc. The lower costs for the service or delivery compensate for the price reduction.
  3. “Reference discount”. Means you negotiate a written agreement to publish a case study with you, make a social media post, or organize a joint event. Of course, the prerequisite is that the client is satisfied. The more discount the customer wants, the more activities on the part of the client to promote you. Please get this in writing, because a contact person is quickly gone.

These first three points are usually negotiated (with) the specialist department. Then there are the buyers of large companies, who have to negotiate a discount, because their variable salary component is measured against it. This small discount always works:

“Immediately and upfront”, means to buy right away and pay everything in advance immediately and get a discount for it, as this will reduce the signing risk for you and increase your liquidity.

More on this topic in the module “Negotiating and closing” of the Sales4Good Implementation Programme.

Dou you want to discuss with me?

Take a look at my LinkedIn Group!

Andrea Mörike is a bundle of energy and burns for social innovations. In her IT past, she used unethical manipulation tricks in sales and felt very far away from her vision of a more sustainable economy, society and environment. Today, she is part of the sustainability movement and the ethical marketing movement, sharing her experience & expertise through coaching and training. Andrea helps impact companies to increase their income and impact without feeling bad, because sales and acquisition can be done differently: ethically and sustainably!

This could be of interest

“… there is penetration, annoyance, trickery …”

“… there is penetration, annoyance, trickery …”

Christian Deiters in an interview with me that was published on (In German Language Only)

Sales is often unpopular with many social business founders. This is understandable, because unfortunately everything in the prevailing sales paradigm revolves around maximising profit, where the main thing is to penetrate, annoy, trick and manipulate the customer into buying, and people will sometimes go to any lengths to achieve this. Did you know that a widespread sales slogan is “FFF”, which stands for “Find, F..k, Forget”? That says it all, doesn’t it? It’s clear that nobody who works for better cooperation wants to be in sales!

read more
#unfuck pitching!

#unfuck pitching!

I am often asked to hold pitching workshops or training sessions and I do so - but with a very critical view of the topic and a different approach to the one I am used to. Here I explain why. A "pitch" is generally understood to be a presentation of one's own services...

read more
The 7 guidelines of ethical selling

The 7 guidelines of ethical selling

The principles of ethical marketing have already been very nicely laid down by the ethical move. The principles of ethical sales are identical in essence: Ethical Sales also focuses on people and the complete acquisition process is characterized by honesty, transparency, responsibility and integrity. Here you will find the 7 most important guidelines for ethical selling.

read more

Always up to date?

You have the possibility to subscribe to my newsletter here. My newsletter will appear irregularly, I estimate 5-8 times per year and you can of course unsubscribe at any time. The newsletter will contain a short overview of the blog articles that have been published in the meantime, as well as other valuable information around the topics of ethical acquisition and ethical sales, scaling business & impact of social enterprises, impact & purpose businesses.