The Force That Drives Buying Decisions
What do people buy?
They don't buy your wonderful presentation.
People buy solutions and visions.
How do you find out what buyer will think that is?
Spend most of your time asking questions of your prospects, and you will have the opportunity to find out if there is a solution or vision that they want to buy.
When I say solutions or visions, here's what I mean. People buy solutions to problems or deep felt pains that they have or fear happening. People also buy visions that represent the means of attaining their desires.
Of the two, most people will have a stronger motivation to solve or avoid a problem than they will to do something to attain a desire. Don't believe me? Just look at how many people claim to dislike or even hate their jobs. Anyone *can* get a new job or start a new career. Most people never do though. Why? Because the fear of going into the unknown or losing their secure paycheck is more painful than enduring whatever pain or frustration they might have in the job they claim to hate or dislike.
Let's say that If you wanted to sell someone on changing careers. You would need to first deal with whatever they feared in the process of changing careers. Only after successfully addressing this you could ever complete this sale and motivate them with the exciting possibilities that the new career offered.
A business might have a need for a particular product or service that offer. You look at this business, and you just know that they need it. It would make real difference to the way they do business, how they treat their customers, how much revenue they take in, or how efficient they are.
None of this matters.
Nope. That is your perception. The only thing that really matters is whether or not the people who run this business perceive that something needs to be changed. Businesses buy something when they recognize that a change needs to occur to fix or avoid a problem, or to realize a vision for the future.
Now, some prospects are walking pain statements. They'll hand you their problem right up on a silver platter and ask you if you can solve it. These tend to be the easy sales. We love these.
Unfortunately for us, there aren't enough sales like this in most industries to make our sales goals off of. Not all people or businesses perceive that they need to change. Not all buyers are aware of the problems, pitfalls, or opportunities that are out there. This is especially true when you sell an innovative or new product, and people are not even aware that what you offer exists.
So herein lies the challenge and the opportunity for us as salespeople (and the reason why businesses have salespeople instead of a stack of order forms in their corporate lobbies). We are paid a lot of money to find the prospects that are unaware of the problems and possibilities, and to show them the consequences that await them.
People are motivated by consequences. This is one of most important things you can learn in persuasion. Consequences are what people fear or want most. This is the root motivation for what people do, or don't do - what they buy or don't buy.
Earlier I said that by asking questions of your prospects you will have the opportunity to find out if there is a solution or vision that they want to buy. I used the word opportunity specifically, because just asking questions is not enough.
You must ask the right questions at the right time. Use questions impotently, and not only will you not learn what motivates your prospect, you'll likely hear "I want to think about it, call in me in a couple of weeks". This in most cases is just the same as losing the sale.
© 1999-2004 Shamus Brown, All Rights Reserved.
Shamus Brown is a Professional Sales Coach and former high-tech sales pro who began his career selling for IBM. Shamus has written more than 50 articles on selling and is the creator of the popular Persuasive Selling Skills CD Audio Program. You can read more of Shamus Brown's sales tips at http://Sales-Tips.industrialEGO.com/ and you can learn more about his persuasive sales skills training at http://www.Persuasive-Sales-Skills.com/
Mindset Over Materials: The Secret Weapon of Sustainable Sales Success
Long-term sales success has less to do with skills or knowledge than you might think. Nor are stunning brochures or excellent products guaranteed to make one iota of impact over time. Unless certain critical elements already exist in the salesperson, providing training and tools in hopes of improving performance does nothing more than giving a PGA golfer's best driver to an amateur. The club itself can't make someone a pro. Yet a pro can take a cheap driver and make a better shot than an amateur with the best and biggest Big Bertha has to offer. Likewise, you probably know one or two standouts who have excelled without classic sales training, without flashy support materials for their products, and even without a superior product to represent. Then what makes the difference? If it's not remarkable closing ability, appealing brochures, outstanding product knowledge, or relentless objection handling... if it's not talent or brainpower or tools that create sustained success, what is it? In more than twenty years studying the top performers in many fields, I've discovered the mysterious X-factor is mindset: a group of attitudes, understandings, beliefs, and resulting behaviors. Whether you're talking about golf or sales or any other pursuit, the same principle applies. Ultimately, the mindset creates top performance, excellent production numbers, and prosperity for both the salesperson and the company he or she represents. Creating a mindset of sustained success requires you to focus on three key areas: The beliefs you have about yourself; The attitudes you have about your customers, product, and industry; The ownership you take of your own success. The Inner Game of Sales You have to see yourself as successful in the inner game in order to be successful in the outer game. When you give that "command" to the unconscious mind -- when you imagine how you'll feel, look and sound when you are producing at the level you desire -- the mind thinks it's already occurred and calls for an encore performance in the real world. The first step to changing your own "mental programming" is to recognize it. Think about it. Think about why you don't do what you know intellectually you should. Then start thinking about what's behind it. What do you have to believe about yourself, your world, your product, your industry, to cause this behavior to occur? Some common underlying beliefs that regulate salespeople's performance are "I need more training and skills before I can succeed." "I'm not worthy of earning more than..." "I am not good at cold calling." "I'm not able to talk to (or get to) the decision makers at the top." Once the underlying belief is uncovered, a new belief must be chosen. The new belief can be the opposite or an "antidote" to the old one, such as "I have unlimited life knowledge and experience." New beliefs must then be "installed." Specifically, the new belief must be supported by both evidence and habit. Start by answering a simple question: What will I have to see, hear, and feel to cement this belief? Then begin vividly visualizing these results at least twice a day. (Note: the mind is most open to suggestion first thing in the morning just after waking and the last thing at night before sleep.) Many people think that results build belief, and in some cases this is true, but it's more often the inverse. Remember the chain: thought/word-image-emotion-action-result. You must be able to see yourself already in possession of the outcome of the new belief. Champions in any field create an unbending belief in themselves, program themselves to continually find evidence to support its truth, then consistently and vividly see themselves in possession of the desired goal. William James, the father of modern psychology, said, "Your belief creates the fact." Now Forget Sales, and Focus on Your Customers Once you've visualized yourself achieving your goals and removed any psychological obstacles, it's time to put those goals aside and focus on the customer. Again, this all happens in your mind, but it has a profound impact on the way you affect your outer world. Today's customers and clients require a new attitude, one that offers something rather than asks for something. In a high-tech society, high touch is highly valuable. The new-school salesperson focuses on giving instead of getting, on service instead of sales. Always a man ahead of his time, Henry Ford captured this mindset eloquently: "Wealth will never be achieved when sought after directly; it only comes as a by-product of providing useful service." This level of service takes some guts. Sometimes you have to tell people what they don't want to hear. Sometimes, you even have to say, "Maybe I'm not the best for you... I'd like to send you to someone who will be." Service means that you're no longer willing to do whatever it takes for the sale. Now you'll do whatever it takes for the customer -- because it's the customer who makes or breaks your business, not an isolated transaction. Old Hat, New Head: Take Ownership of Your Success Have you heard these ideas before? Are you utilizing them as you should? If not, why not? Likewise, are there other, obvious principles of business success you've overlooked? Sales success grows out of a fundamental mindset, based on some ideas that may be "old hat" but require a "new head" to fit you. I operate from the premise that you know what you need to do, and you have what you need to create a six- or seven-figure income. Most salespeople have heard all the "magic bullet" ideas and pitches. But until you begin to think in new ways, you will never apply these time-tested principles. The distinction between short-term flashes in the pan and sustained success is simply doing what may seem obvious to you right now. We might say, "If the hat fits, wear it."
Mortgage vs. Real Estate Lead Generation
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1. When you make your first sale, follow-up with the customer. You could follow-up with a "thank you" email and include an advertisement for other products you sell. You could follow-up every few months.
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If you went to see your doctor, and he mentioned a particular over the counter drug to you, or a particular type of food that was healthy, chances are, you would listen to this advice, than go out and buy the product.
Can Walmart Make You Rich?
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Last minute discounting has become so prevalent that many companies have come to depend on it as their default sales strategy. Employing a go-to-market strategy of being the lowest cost provider is one thing, but dramatic, tactical discounting on every deal will erode your company's margins and leave you digging a deeper and deeper hole in which your company will ultimately bury itself. I don't want to give you the impression that discounting is never appropriate. I can think of three scenarios where it is required:
Voice Mail That Sells
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Six Simple Steps for Getting More Applications
When I first started out as a loan officer, one of the things I found to be the toughest, was taking an application over the phone. I just didn't seem to have the skills, nor did I have a plan. I was literally calling people on the phone and saying something to the effect of; Hello, my name is Jay Conners, and this is what I do, and this is why I am calling, would you be interested? No wonder I wasn't having any success.
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Let me tell you about my friend Peter who has four children. With a family of six, he finds buying cars rather trying.
Open Your Introduction With A Firecracker Moment
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101 Ways to Improve Your Direct Mail Response
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Two Mistakes That Will Cost You Money
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More Cleaning and Janitorial Customers Using Yahoo
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