Direct sales is a very intriguing and very unexpected profession. You might be able to close a deal with zero expectations of closing. On the other hand, you might come across a situation wherein you put in your blood and sweat, have high expectations, and you’re still not able to close the deal. These kinds of situations make this profession both high risky and high rewarding at the same time.
The reason you are here must be that you want to make it less risky and more rewarding. So, let’s jump to the things that brought you here. Whether you’re new to sales, or you’re already an experienced one, there’s something for everyone in today’s blog. After intense research and long brainstorming with some of the top-notch sales leaders of the industry, we have summed the entire knowledge into a nectar of 4 Unconventional points that are going to skyrocket your selling skills and put you ahead of others.
1. Don’t sell! – You don’t like people trying to sell you, so don’t be the one- Just imagine the sales professionals in your day-to-day life. You get a lot of calls who try to sell you their product or service. You go to a supermarket and you find a salesperson trying hard to sell you something which you’re not interested in. You enquired somewhere about some product or service, and now they’re blindly giving you follow-up calls even though you’re no more interested in that. Isn’t all this annoying? You seriously feel frustrated.
Now, the first step is to separate yourself from such kind of salespeople. How do you do that? Simple, DON’T SELL THEM ANYTHING, JUST HELP THEM BUY. Help them make the right choice. Make sure you don’t sound too professional. Doing so will make you a part of those pushy salespeople which no one likes. Sound friendly and help them buy your product by giving them suggestions and makes the feel as if you’re doing nothing but just trying to help them in their decision.
2. Learn and implement The Rhetorical Triangle of Persuasion- Rhetoric is the ancient art of using language (spoken or written) to persuade. If you use it well, your prospect would clearly what you’re saying and will more likely to be influenced by it. The three points on this triangle which you should consider while communicating with your prospect are Ethos, Pathos, and Logos.
Ethos is building trust by establishing your credibility and authority. You need to open the conversation in a way that builds your credibility. The reaction of your prospect might wary. So, you need to make it clear why you’re talking to him. If you don’t, the prospect might think that you’re trying to hide something which would not enable you to build the bridge of trust and you would fail to penetrate your ideas into his mind in the beginning only. Whether you’re selling a product or a service or just giving them a presentation, your prospects would always be trying to figure out your motives, beliefs, and values. This allows them to subconsciously evaluate your credibility and decide if they will trust you or not.
Logos, if translated from Greek to English is Logic. It refers to your logical appeal to the prospect. It refers to the factual and statistical statements that help you build and present a logical argument. Your prospect would be subconsciously looking for different logical arguments and evidences for any logical claims that you make. They might also think about any possible counterarguments. Let’s look at how companies use logos to market their products by taking an example of a company selling its shoes. The company might talk about the material used for making the shoal and how this shoal is more comfortable over others by presenting some facts about the material. It might also present some facts about the fabric to show how breathable it is. Ultimately, you start trusting such an advertisement. This is known as the use of Logos. You may use Logos in your communication with the prospect by using stats or well-known facts, present researches in support of your claims, being as specific as possible, and avoiding generalizing and making logical transitions between the concepts your present.
Pathos is translated to English as Emotions. Pathos in The Rhetorical Triangle simply means appealing to the emotions of your audience. Here, the idea is that you want your audience to feel in a certain way when you talk to them. For example, when you watch a commercial of Surf Excel, you get excited when you see the people happy in their new-like clothes that were super dirty before using the detergent. The happiness in those people evokes your emotions and then you also want to feel happy by wearing those new-like clothes after washing them in Surf Excel. That is how they use pathos to emotionally persuade you to buy their product.
While using pathos, you might need to adapt as per the mindset of your prospect. Based on that, you need to choose the words that you speak to them to appeal to their emotions. For example, if you’re selling to professions, you might need to use more of technical terms and jargons. If you’re selling to regular people, you might need to dumb down your sentence construction to appeal to their emotions. Also, you might need to be careful while mixing up Pathos with Logos as Logos don’t include emotions, and mixing up Pathos with Logos wrongly might decrease the influence of both of these and you might end up losing the sales. Storytelling, sharing acronyms, using dialogues and quotes can be very much effective to bring emotions in your talk. You may also use humor, images, words that provoke their emotions, modulate your voice as per the emotions that you’re trying to impart.
3. The Luncheon technique – This is a less known yet very effective technique for any sales that includes face-to-face interaction. Basically, this technique includes persuading your prospect over a great meal. Whenever it comes to important deals, you may always give it a try. The psychology behind this technique says that we are very likely to get persuaded by someone if we’re having a meal that we like especially if it is offered by him. There are further two major reasons behind that. First, as someone is giving us something, we subconsciously want to give something in return. In simple return, we tend to do a favor to someone who has done us a favor. The second reason is while eating something that we like, we feel happy and we are more likely to say YES to someone asking for something. That’s how this technique is very effective to close important deals.
For example, you may invite your prospect to a good restaurant or hotel for lunch. Just make sure, that the place is not overcrowded and serves good food. Ask your prospect about what he would like to have. Try ordering the same for you. (People like people who are like them) Now, you don’t have to talk about closing until your dish is at your table, just keep beating around the bush and have light and happy talks to uplift the mood of both of you. As you start eating, gradually turn your talk into closing, start putting forward the best of your statements. Use your lethal weapons i.e. Logos and Pathos and try closing the sales. You have now high chances to get a Yes from your prospect. Make sure you have all of your closing talks while eating only. Not before, not after.
4. Dominate the closing – Sales talk is something where you need to be polite, gentle, keep your nerves calm throughout the talk. But the same could be the reason that your talk goes very good but the deal remains unclosed. You were too nice when it came to closing the deal. Most of the time, you would be needing to be a little assertive, a little dominant to close the deal.
The human being is lazy being by nature. This being keeps looking for teeny-tiny chances to avoid efforts. It especially comes true when this being is given a choice. Similarly, many a time, people don’t buy because they want to avoid efforts. You need to utilize this knowledge wisely to get the sales coming into your account. When you gradually move towards the closing section of your talk, start being a little assertive and dominant (NOT TOO MUCH). This simple idea will increase your overall score as a salesperson. This would also save you tons of effort and time including the follow-up calls and meetings. Make sure you don’t give them a choice when it comes to closing, or else they would choose the easier path and won’t buy.
P.S. – This implementation of this idea would vary from prospect to prospect. Some prospects might not like you trying to dominate, they might find you pushy. So, you need to identify it based on your talk and your common sense.
Though there’s no sure trick of sales, and there would never be one, but this is a skill which you can sharpen as you get more experience. The ideas that you read here and there might not work in a given situation and your experience might be able to get you through the situation. So, sales is always a test & trial thing. Keep testing, keep trying, and always stay open to feedback to take your skills to the next level!