By Amy O’Connor
Selling your final few of anything is often tricky. From a sales person’s perspective, we are often sick of looking at whatever it is and are ready for our next, fresh batch of widgets to sell.
From an operational perspective, management just wants them gone to focus on what’s next. But to buyers, the final few are often seen as valuable and desirable if we position the sales strategy correctly.
What’s your message to the buyers? Why are these the ones still available?
Notice I use the words “still available” not “leftovers”. No one wants the leftovers.
Any time you are down to your last available of anything, you have to find a way to explain the operational reason that these are the last one remains. Perhaps these became available later than the others or they chose these to be the last available on purpose.
The message is: these are not still here because nobody wanted them. They are still here because we designed it that way on purpose. We always knew these would be the last ones to sell.
Watch your marketing messages.
Sure, we want to create a sense of urgency with buyers to sell the final few. I get it. And one way to do that is through scarcity messaging. And this type of messaging can work for some products under certain conditions, but we can also get ourselves in trouble when we misuse scarcity-marketing messages. For example, “last remaining” can sound like “picked over”. “Hurry in” just sounds desperate. “Clearance” devalues the product. And don’t even get me started on “Final Close Out.”
I’ve always wondered why the marketing message needed to change at all. If you’ve had a marketing message that has been working up to this point, perhaps just keep it. Why risk possible negative psychological implications on the part of the buyer by using product-devaluing language?
Planning your pricing strategy
If your strategy on the last remaining few is to slash prices to get them gone, you might want to reconsider. Dropping your price can actually make it more difficult to sell out. Why? Because buyers equate price with quality and desirability. If they see a bunch of red lines and falling numbers, they may decide that or product or service is undesirable instead of thinking ‘wow, what a great deal’.
When selling the final few, do yourself a favor and think about your strategy not from your perspective but from the psychological perspective of your buyer. What do they need to see and hear to give them the confidence to buy? What marketing messages will be effective and which ones could be damaging? Would a pricing change help or hurt? And finally, what do you want the buyer to feel about your product or service after they buy?