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How small business can better influence their customers to buy without being salesy

What is it about the word selling that sometimes puts the fear of God into a lot of businesses. They know they need to sell their products and services, but many don’t actually like it. This is usually down to a lack of three things:

  • Knowledge of how to sell
  • Confidence to sell
  • Accountability to get out there and keep selling

Selling is a process that needs to be followed, however there is also a lot that you can do to that support that process and make it less robotic. Understanding what influences your customers to want to buy from you without you having to ask, is key to not being a pushy sales person.

Following your sales process with a more consultative value added approach will make you more successful at selling.

Can any business can add value to their sales process without being too salesy

First you need to really understand why your customer does what they do. What makes them make a decision, or in other words what really influences them.

Understanding what influences a prospects decision making process is key to how you communicate with them and go on to influence their decision in your favour. When a business can truly understand what influences their potential customers, that is when they will succeed at selling.

“Strive not to be a success, but rather of value”

Albert Einstein

The 16 Principles of Influence

American sales performance improvement company, the RAIN Group talks about the 16 principals of influence being key to taking a prospect from “Hello” to “Let’s sign and get going”. I think they are all highly important to remember when selling to prospects to create a win win scenario for everyone.

  1. Attention – You must capture the attention of today’s busy buyers and draw their focus away from other things towards you. If you can’t capture attention, you’ll never get a seat at the table.
  2. Curiosity – After you get attention, keep attention by fueling the buyer’s desire to learn more.
  3. Desire – Desire creates dissatisfaction. Dissatisfaction is the impetus for for action in sales.
  4. Envy – Desire is powerful. Envy is desire on turbo boost – it’s the desire desire for what other people have.
  5. Emotional Journey – People forget what they hear and remember how they feel.
  6. Elicit and develop lasting images and feelings –
take buyers on an emotional journey in your conversations.
  7. Belief – Inspire confidence in the efficacy of your people, process, company, and product or service. When you increase belief, you reduce risk and inspire action.
  8. Justification – People buy with their hearts and justify with their heads. You need to make sure the rational argument that supports why they should buy from you comes out.
  9. Trust – Belief is faith that something will work. Trust is faith in you. Trust is the foundation of sales. No trust, no sale.
  10. Stepping Stones – People are driven to be consistent. Ask them to do something once and they’re more likely to continue to do it and be open to expanding sizes and scopes in the future.
  11. Ownership – Until the buyer takes ownership over decisions, actions, and results, your ability to influence them is limited. You need them to take responsibility for making change happen.
  12. Involvement – When you have a hand in creating something, you’re more likely to be a passionate advocate for its success. Get buyers to become partners in the selling process.
  13. Desire for Inclusion – Inclusion supports people’s needs for validation. If you can show that others are doing it, it will increase envy and curiosity as to what they might be missing.
  14. Scarcity – People value things that are rare and hard to get.
  15. Likeability – People pay attention to, talk to, and buy from people they like. They want to see people they like succeed.
  16. Indifference – You want to be likeable, but you don’t want to need to be liked. Be ready and willing to walk away, and happy to do it if the situation warrants.
  17. Commitment – When people make written and public commitments, they’re more likely to keep them. Gain commitment for every next step in the process, get it in writing, and make it public.

Consider these influences before you reach out to new prospects. Think about the questions you need to ask that will help you find out the answers to what will influence your prospect to make a decision in your favour.