Friday, May 16, 2014
"To gain influence over others make them feel that you are more interested in them as a person than as a customer."
Before you can persuade anyone to buy your product or service you must first get past their resistance. If you try to close a sale before you've gained some trust, respect or likeability you will likely fail. The natural tendency is to say no to any proposal that isn't the status quo. No one wants to be sold anything. However we do like to buy, especially if it is from someone we like, trust or respect.
"Your first objective is not to make the sale it is to start a relationship."
Here are 7 ways to make them feel like you are their friend...
1. Use their first name often. Start and end every conversation with their first name. People love to hear their name. It is highly personal. If they hear it being said often enough it will start to feel like you are a friend. Also start and end with their first name if you are emailing or texting them. This is a very powerful tip that I hope you don't discount. That's why I made it the first tip!
2. Always be looking for something to like about the person. If you start liking them they will start liking you.
3. Seek the similarities. It's the things that we have in common with others that is the basis of how most friendships are started. It was my love of boating and being on the water that led me to great friendships with others who shared my passion. We all tend to like people who share our interests and passions.
4. Show interest in what they like. People love to talk about two things; themselves and the things they love. So ask lots of questions about them and their interests.
5. Friends give friends small gifts. So show up with a small gift and watch their resistance melt away. It can be as small a gift as a cup of coffee. Just remember that gifts with your company name on it are considered advertising and do not create gratitude or reciprocity. Don't do that.
6. Greet them and say good bye like you would to a good friend. Big smile and an energetic warm greeting or good bye. Act a little excited to see them and they will be receptive to meet you.
7. Make a commitment to developing a friendship. One meeting just won't do it. You are not going to gain trust with just one meeting. Familiarity breeds likeability. Likeability leads to friendship and friendship begets trust. Trust leads to lots of business and that leads to becoming a superstar!
BONUS...pretending that the person you are about to meet for the first time is a friend causes you to relax and make a much better first impression. Same goes when I am giving a presentation to a group. I pretend in my head that they are my friends and a lot of the nervousness goes away. Try it!