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hard sell

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noun

a method of advertising or selling that is direct, forceful, and insistent; high-pressure salesmanship (opposed to soft sell).

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Origin of hard sell

An Americanism dating back to 1950–55

Definition for hard sell (2 of 2)

hard-sell
[ hahrd-sel ]
/ ˈhɑrdˈsɛl /

verb (used with or without object), hard-sold, hard-sell·ing.

to sell or advertise (something) in a forceful and insistent way: to hard-sell new car models to reluctant buyers.
to convince (someone) in a forceful and insistent way: to hard-sell customers on a new product.

adjective

characterized by or promoted through a hard sell: hard-sell tactics.

Origin of hard-sell

An Americanism dating back to 1955–60
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for hard sell

British Dictionary definitions for hard sell

hard sell

noun

an aggressive insistent technique of selling or advertisingCompare soft sell
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Idioms and Phrases with hard sell

hard sell

1

An aggressive, high-pressure sales practice or promotion, as in Used-car salesmen tend to give you a hard sell. This expression gave rise to the antonym soft sell, a low-key sales approach that relies on gentle persuasion. [Colloquial; c. 1950]

2

A difficult sales prospect, one who resists sales pressure. For example, Those brokers who call us at dinnertime find me a hard sell—I usually just hang up on them. [Late 1900s]

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
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