A List Apart

The A List Apart Blog Presents:

Smells Like Design Sales

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Selling our design services is like flossing our teeth: nobody enjoys it (well, almost nobody), but we all have to do it. And yet, for people who are constantly selling, we are curiously mum about it:

We work in a wonderfully open community where ideas and best practices are shared and implemented liberally. Well, except when it comes to sales.

Yesterday, on Cognition, Happy Cog’s business development director Joe Rinaldi challenged the secrecy around design studio sales processes and win/lose pitch ratios, and asked readers to share their sales stories—including lessons learned.

Not one to ignore a flung gauntlet, Fastspot’s president and chief visionary officer Tracey Halvorson has now shared her studio’s sales experiences. Among Tracey’s insights: If you never lose, winning ain’t so sweet.

The conversation continues with a response from Pittsburgh’s Full Stop Interactive, who share what business development is like at a small studio:

For every 10 leads that come in, five are worthless, three disappear before a proposal can take place, and one slips away to an incumbent, a cheaper option, or a better salesman. One, however, that vital, beautiful, fragile one goes on to become a real, honest-to-goodness project that lets us keep the lights on and the t-shirts flowing.

So, how about you? How’s your 2013 shaping up, sales-wise? What tips can you pass along?

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