It’s not about selling; it’s about bonding

Dazed and confused. That’s how the majority of the population is feeling right now. Normal doesn’t live here anymore and she’s never coming back. She’s been replaced by massive unpredictability. And with unpredictability comes uncertainty. And with uncertainty comes anxiety. Let me ask you this question:

How worried are you about the next twelve months? How worried are your clients? How worried are you about your clients?

As president of a motivation and persuasion company, I’m seeing a national affliction: it’s called FUD — Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt. No one truly knows what’s going on anymore. We’re living in crazy, scary times. Things that were previously totally unimaginable are now commonplace. And, then, just when we think things are coming together, they fall apart all over again.

So, if you’re nuts enough to make a living as a salesperson, what should you do? Simple. Stop selling. Start bonding. In an environment where people are more afraid than ever of making a mistake, don’t threaten them even further. The moment someone becomes aware that another person is trying to sell them something, their psychic walls go up and their probability of buying comes down.

People hate to be sold but they love to buy. And whom do they love to buy from? People who they love. And whom do they love? People who they can trust; people who make them feel relaxed; people who seem to know exactly what they want and how to give it to them; people who share their values; people who honestly want to do the right thing for them, not just make the money and run.

Like most of us, I’m not sure I really know what’s going on, but I do know this: If you can become someone’s confidant, you stand the greatest chance of getting them to buy from you. The moment that your client gives you permission to enter his private space, you’ve crossed the threshold of success. You’ve become an insider. You’ve become a resource and an ally in the contest of life. You’ve become a source of well being and reassurance. You’re golden.

So here are the five simple steps to becoming a confidant:

Know the most powerful benefit you offer the client. Know your values and live them. Be courageous and radiate this courage to the client.

Understand your client’s values and honour them. Talk his language; share his priorities. Consistently demonstrate your empathy with him.

Expand the role you play in the life of your client. Make the unexpected expected. Pleasure up his experience of dealing with you.

Build momentum daily. Romance the client constantly. Whatever you take for granted gets taken away. Don’t fight, dance. An objection is simply an invitation for you to take the next step.

Follow through fanatically. Let your “”Yes”” mean “”Yes”” and your “”No”” mean “”No””. Make your word your client’s most valuable currency.

Mike Lipkin is the president of Environics/Lipkin, the specialist motivation and persuasion company in the Environics Research Group, one of Canada’s largest research houses. Mike Lipkin can be reached at: mike.lipkin@environics.ca.

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