Are aggressive in-your-face sales techniques the new norm?
A few years ago, we were walking through a shopping mall in Singapore and this Caucasian guy (or ang moh as we’re called here) jumped in front of me and poured moisturizer into my hand. I was so surprised this happened to me, I actually had to stop and listen to his sales pitch. This was definitely not a normal occurrence.
He was selling facial products (Oro Gold) and this dude was unbelievably pushy, I mean seriously pushy. I managed to get away without a purchase but I was surprised – this sort of tactic just didn’t happen in Singapore. Steve was also pounced on and he was bloody furious about it. It was a brief encounter, but this sales guy definitely made an impact.
So as a sales technique, is it a good thing or a bad thing?
Well I’m going to go out on a limb and say it’s a bad thing, because those shops and their aggressive sales people are popping up everywhere. We got it again today.
Taking the boys to watch the new Ghostbusters movie (bloody brilliant by the way and it was great to watch a laugh-out-loud movie) we walked through a section in Suntec City Mall with two shops selling the same products close to each other. Once again we encountered it - two businesses deploying the exact same in-your-face sales techniques.
It felt like we were under attack. Loud voices, pushy pushy pushy, trying to get the product on us without our permission, standing in front of us so we have to walk around them, and the worst bit – waving stuff right in my face. Can’t tell you how much I hate that…
Let’s just say that one of the things I’ve never enjoyed about having kids is how much stuff they put in my face!! Kids have no bloody sense of how annoying it is, and on a regular basis, I get ‘faced’ by the boys. I don’t like it at all. Not at all.
While extremely annoying when kids do this, I do not expect adults to do it. I also don’t expect sales people to do it.
But it’s all just left me wondering - who is teaching them this technique? The fact that it is consistent across competing brands, in the same field, tells me it is a technique being taught. But how can they be successful?
Are the loud voices supposed to embarrass people into buying, because culturally in Asia, no one wants to be put on public display when doing nothing other than minding their own business?
Is the pushiness and idea of getting the product literally into our hands being taught as a winning strategy that people can’t say no to?
I don’t know, but I’ll tell you one thing. These people are pissing me off and the next person who invades my space and puts something right up in my face is going to get a tongue lashing. I’ve had enough.
Has anyone else had the same experience? And if you’re not in Singapore, are you seeing the same businesses with the same techniques cropping up in your country? If you are, I’d love to work out who the people are that are teaching this. I think they’re in for a good kicking and I’d be happy to oblige.
Let me know?
Yours, without the bollocks
Stop hand courtesy of Shutterstock.