Three Sleazy Sales Tactics to Avoid And What To Do Instead
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Podcast Show Notes

We’ve all been pressured to purchase a product… whether it be a pair of jeans or a new car. And by going through that sleazy buying process we can assume all sales careers mean you need to act that way to make a sale… But that couldn’t be further from the truth.

So today I want to share with you three sleazy sales tactics to avoid and what to do instead. And these tactics pop up whether you are in direct sales, a brick a mortar store, or an online-based business. You’ve seen them all and possibly even done them yourself.

By understanding what to do instead you’ll know how to create a win-win for you and your prospective buyer.

Seller Centered

The first sleazy sales tactic is being Seller Centered.

Which means the SALE is all about you and not the customer. This can be the hardest to overcome because we get into a business to SELL things and turn a profit. But when you can put your heart first and pinpoint the intent behind wanting to persuade your prospect to purchase you can defeat the sales-first mentality.

The last thing your prospective readers want to feel is pressure to buy.

So when you become seller-centered you, in reality, are money-driven. Even if you don’t do it intentionally you keep pushing for the yes.

In return you end up following up too much, you pressure the prospect to say YES instead of putting the customer first. This will damage your reputation as well as waste your time.

Instead you want to put yourself in your prospective buyer’s shoes and understand their perspective. Know their beliefs and fears that are keeping them stuck from saying yes to your product.

Example in my own business

For instance, in my own business, the product I suggest clients start within my value ladder is The Content Connection Playbook™: 7-Day Brand-Discovery Mini-Course.

I believe everyone needs that mini-course because I’ve seen in my own business what happened when I did brand discovery on myself… and the same for my students who purchased it. I stand strong in that product being a MUST for every business owner of any type because it helps you define your core interest, niche audience, and beliefs for content talking points.

So instead of being seller-focused to sell-sell-sell more Content Connection Playbook Mini-Courses – I need to think of the prospective buyer and what’s in it for them.

  • What transformation will they see from purchasing that Playbook Mini-Course?
  • Why do they need it?
  • What impact can this product make for them?

When you can use the right content strategy you can easily overcome being seller centered pretty quickly!


There’s something to say for being persistent… but don’t overdo it by not respecting your prospect’s lack of interest. There are ways to make the sale without being overly aggressive or pushy.

False Advertising

Another sleazy sales tactic is False Advertising.

This could be through false scarcity saying that a product is about to go out of stock when it’s not. Or could be false urgency when you claim your deal is ending soon when again, it’s the same deal you always have available. 

Honesty matters in business and especially more than ever as more and more online businesses pop up. This again is why I teach how to build a brand-focused business … putting a personality into your brand to build deeper trust and connection with your readers.

Above all you must tell the truth. Avoid overstatements, exaggerations, and misleading statements are a big no-no. 

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That’s not to say you can’t ever hold limited-time sales or promotions but make sure they include a limited-time price that actually ends or a special bundle price or maybe even a special bonus when they purchase before a defined time.

What to do if you don’t love a product

Another false advertising tactic is saying you LOVE a product when you actually don’t even use it. This can be seen a lot in direct sales or influencer marketing… since you have an entire portfolio of products to offer you feel the need to talk about all of them and why you love them. 

But what if you really don’t love it? Does that mean you shouldn’t talk about it? Well no. Just because you don’t use a product doesn’t mean a reader won’t fall in love with it.

But when promoting a product make sure you tell the truth. Let your readers know this product isn’t something that’s in your routine or closet, but your friend Sally loves it. Allow your testimony and the testimonies of others speak the loudest. Just make sure they are real and not exaggerated.

Cold Targeting

The last sleazy sales tactic I want to talk about is Cold Targeting.

This is when you try to sell to a cold prospect meaning they weren’t a “lead” before you started jamming your products down their throat.

A lead is someone who:

  • Likes your post
  • Shares your post
  • Comments on your post
  • Expresses an interest in what you have to offer
  • “Raises their hand” to learn more by maybe joining your email list or they download your free lead magnet.

Once you generate a lead, it is OK to reach out to them! You actually are hurting yourself by not. They might turn into a customer or they may not… but it’s important to take a minute to identify and understand their needs.

If you have to start a direct message with vague questions like “Hey, how’s your day going?” or “Is this a good time for you?” you are cold targeting.

We’ve all been approached in the mall by a seller asking, “Hey, how’s it going?” in an enthusiastic pitch.

“Usually, we walk by these people without a second thought. We know the greeting is just a way for them to bridge to the sales pitch. It’s fake interest and it feels a little slimy.” (

So even though it’s a harmless, polite question you are wasting your time and theirs.

Bring leads to you

Instead of cold reach outs produce content that BRINGS leads to you.

When a lead expresses interest then you have free rein to communicate with them whether this is via email or direct message. But you want to craft an opening statement that has their interest in mind.

By knowing all you can about your niche audience you will already know their needs and in return can validate them in your messaging. You can remove the beliefs and fears that aren’t serving them and that are keeping them stuck.

To recap

So to recap the Three Sleazy Sales Tactics to Avoid And What To Do Instead were:

  1. Being Seller Centered. Instead of focusing on more sales and profit… think of the prospective buyer and what’s in it for them if they purchase your product. What impact can this product make for them? When you can use the right content strategy you can easily overcome being seller centered pretty quickly!
  2. False Advertising. Instead of using false scarcity and urgency for limited-time sales or promotions makes sure you have a real sale that you are promoting. Also, make sure to use honest testimonials and if you don’t use a product don’t feel like you need to fake liking it. Your readers appreciate honesty and it makes you more credible. 
  3. Cold Targeting. Instead of relying on cold messaging find ways to bring genuine LEADS to you. Once you master this important step of the sales process you will never again sound like you are fishing for a sale to a cold prospect. Your leads will be wanting to learn more from you about your products and how your product may be the solution they are looking for.

Need help with more leads?

I know many of my listeners are in direct sales so to help you attract new leads, create engagement, and grow your online sales… in less than 30 days WITHOUT using any of these mentioned sleazy sales tactics…

I’ve developed a Direct Sales Guide to Selling on the Web you’ll want to download at Based on my Stay in Your Lane Brand Method it uses the same principles I teach other business owners and brings it to the direct sales industry. To download your copy visit

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Above all create a win-win for you and your prospective buyer. Yes, you need to make an income, I get it… I do too. 

But by being honest, transparent, and knowing more about what your niche audience needs you can ditch your cold targeted sales pitch for a content strategy that has their interest in mind.

Other episodes you may enjoy is “EP 3: 6 REASONS WHY PERSONAL BRANDING IS A NON-NEGOTIABLE



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