In my Smart Calling Report (the monthly newsletter for my Inner Circle members with my newest tips, and great training from other experts) last month I presented a number of brief tidbits from my research and observations. Today I’m sharing a few with you here.
I came across an article that cited studies showing that people are more interested in talking about themselves than they are food or money.I’d guess that has always been true to a degree. But it’s amplified today.
Just look at Facebook, Instagram, and other “look at how cool my life is” social media sites.
How can you use this? No shocker here. Ask questions to prompt people to talk about themselves, their situation, and what they plan on doing next.
Then, resist the tendency to tell a “bigger fish” story about yourself, and encourage them to go deeper. You get great info, and it builds their likability with you.
Related to the previous point, want to build rapport quickly and get people to like you more?
Notice, and bring up similarities. You can easily find out some useful info on a person’s LinkedIn profile or company bio if it’s on their site.
For example, “I see we both are from Michigan.” Or, “I noticed you also worked at BigCo Inc.”
The Winnipeg Free Press wrote that Canadian research shows that when consumers share “incidental” traits like a birthday, name or hometown with a salesperson, they’re more likely to open their wallets.
They even brought up the point that someone would be more likely to tip a waiter or waitress with the same name as them.
“Those incidental similarities can actually shape the situation in terms of your desire to buy and associate with the product or company, your attitude toward the product,” says Darren Dahl, a marketing professor at the University of British Columbia’s Sauder School of Business. “It overflows onto the purchase experience — even though, rationally, it really shouldn’t.”
The article went on to point out that at Disney, some Hilton Hotels, (and my country club) employees wear name tags with their hometown. This helps strike up friendly conversations, connection, and increased spending.
Here’s a great way to get people to sell themselves. Ask a question like,
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“How would ______ help you to/affect ______?”
The first part would be the benefit/ result your product/service delivers. The second is what they want to accomplish.
“How would having your sales reps be more confident in what they were saying and picking up the phone to prospect more affect your team hitting their numbers?”
“How would streamlining your shopping cart ordering process from going through five screens to just one help you lower your abandoned cart rate and complete more of the sales that are started?”
Here’s a psychological principle that I’ve suggested for a long time and just saw some scientific evidence to back it up:
When you repeat a point several times, it tends to become more believable.
For example, when you hear a radio commercial, notice how many times a certain point, or the product name is mentioned.
Here’s what I saw in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology:
People have a “… tendency to infer that a familiar opinion is a prevalent one, even when its familiarity derives solely from the repeated expression of one group member. Six experiments demonstrate this effect and show that it holds even when perceivers are consciously aware that the opinions come from the speaker.”
You can use this by presenting your main benefit/result a few times in different ways. That is much better than laundry-listing things they do NOT care about.
Remember, they buy for their reasons, not yours. So repeat the ones they are interested in a few times and you will have more impact.
*About the Author: Art Sobczak works with thousands of sales reps each year helping them get more business by phone. He provides real world, how-to ideas and techniques that help salespeople use the phone more effectively.