hard sell


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. 2020

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.