To help a sales prospect who’s someone you’ve just met feel comfortable with you right away, utilize these tips from sales expert Lenann McGookey Gardner.
“What would you say you’d need to do,” queried Gardner. ” ‘Ask about the other person’? ‘Smile’? ‘Talk about common interests’? ‘Make eye contact’? It’s none of those things.”
Dr. Genie LaBorde, author of Influencing with Integrity, says that, while good, those aren’t the most powerful things you can do to help another person feel comfortable with you. Dr. LaBorde’s research says that three of the most powerful things you can do to help people feel comfortable with you immediately are:
1. Talk exactly as loudly as they talk – no louder or softer.
2. Talk at the same speed they speak – no faster or slower.
3. Have a similar physical body posture – that is, a similar degree of alertness or relaxation in your body position.
Notice that this research shows that other people like the same things they are doing! So, you simply make adjustments and do what they are doing in these three areas.
Note that this does not tell you to match others’ accents. That’s offensive to many people. And it does not tell you to match depressed or angry attitudes. Quite the opposite.
“My experience has been that if you can be positive, upbeat, and encouraging, as well as knowledgeable about what you have to offer and willing to listen to another person’s situation — that is, thinking not in terms of closing a deal but of helping this person, you have a successful approach,” says Gardner.
So suppose your prospect says, in a very soft voice, “I’m Fred. I don’t think we’re really looking for anything like this…” You’d respond (just as softly), “Well, hi, Fred. So you’re not looking for anything like (whatever)?” If it’s not obvious what you have to sell, you might try, “Well, hi, Fred. You’re not looking for … what, may I ask?”
Remember, you’re matching the loudness and the speed of Fred’s speech – which you can do easily on the phone, too, and, if you’re physically present with him, you’re adopting a similar body posture
Lenann McGookey Gardner is a Harvard MBA, an American Marketing Association “Professional Services Marketer of the Year” award winner, and a 2010 winner of the “Top Performing CEO” award from her state’s Business Weekly. She has two decades of experience helping services providers to grow their revenues and is the author of Got Sales? The Complete Guide to Today’s Proven Methods for Selling Services. She is also an Executive Coach. Learn more at www.YouCanSell.com.
Other press releases from Lenann McGookey Gardner Management Consulting, Inc.
- Test Your Leadership Qualities with YouCanLeadCoaching.com Quiz - August 26th, 2011
- How To Successfully Conduct Sales Follow-Up Phone Calls - August 16th, 2011
- The 90-10-90 Rule for Selling Successfully - August 3rd, 2011
- Lenann McGookey Gardner Now a Certified Speaking Professional - July 25th, 2011
- Can Scientists Learn How To Sell Their Services? - July 19th, 2011
Contact InformationLenann McGookey Gardner
Title: President/Executive Coach
Lenann McGookey Gardner Management Consulting, Inc.
11024 Montgomery Blvd NE
Albuquerque, NM 87111
Alt. Phone: 505-250-3355
Additional ContactGail Rubin