We don’t employ any dedicated sales people at Primate. None whatsoever. Nada. Partly because we don’t believe anyone can talk with the same passion and enthusiasm about what we do as the people who actually do it and partly because we believe that just by being good, really good, we’ll succeed and make it. Or at least that’s what we’re banking our life savings on.
It’s always been our philosophy and guiding belief that if you’re good enough at something and create products that are truly a joy to behold, you will be noticed and appreciated for it and that quality and attention to detail are more important than sales and marketing (he writes as someone with the job title ‘Strategy & Marketing’). Sure, other (very successful) companies and people have taken this approach and thrived because of it (37 Signals are a great example) yet I occasionally still have that little tickle of doubt in the back of mind that makes me wonder if it’s a strategy that’s going to work for us. Maybe just being really good isn’t enough in this day and age of highly competitive digital agencies and web offerings. Maybe we do needs sales people and account managers and some powerful contacts who have fingers in the pies of dozens of companies, oh wouldn’t that be nice, ready to pimp us out at a moment’s notice. These are the fears that keep me awake at night.
I immediately fled to my dark study and wrote a long, bitter blog post about how wrong he was
Now I don’t doubt our work. At all. Call me cocky, arrogant, foolhardy or whatever you want but I have the absolute confidence in what we produce and know deep down that its quality is of an incredibly high standard. And I’m not just talking about being technically proficient either. Our passion for content combined with our enthusiasm, energy and sheer joy for the work we do gives us, in my not-so-humble opinion, a solid edge against our competitors – the problem is finding the right people to get in front off to tell them about it.
My father, in a rather backhand statement once, made a comment that I was of an introvert personality. I immediately fled to my dark study and wrote a long, bitter blog post about how wrong he was… even though he was probably right. None of us at Primate feel particularly comfortable gallivanting around networking events, roaming about them in search of fresh meat to hawk our wares to. In fact, get any of us in front of someone and we’ll probably ask more questions about what they do, too shy (no, really) to talk about ourselves. We are far from salesmen and ridiculously awful at the concept of the hard sale, somewhat by choice and somewhat by personality trait.
We believe though that just by being really good, that just by delivering exceptionally high quality products and great customer services to the people we already work with, we’ll steadily grow through reputation and recommendation. Instead of attacking the market with aggressive sales strategies, we’ll contribute to the web industry with meaningful work and exciting advancements, hoping that the things we produce, the stuff that we say and deliver, will be the most important deciding factor in the future of our business.
So does just being very good mean you’ll eventually succeed? Is it enough? I have no idea. Ask me again in three years. It worked for the likes of Paravel and Stefan Sagmeister so here’s hoping it works for us.