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The fundamentals of selling
by Kevin Nunley
Everyone has an opinion about which marketing methods work best. Many experts even take a stand on things like which colors are the most persuasive, which phrases sell best, and even what kind of handshake to use in greeting prospects.
This is all fine and good, and maybe these people are onto something. But what about the fundamentals? If your website is the right color and uses all the right phrases, but leaves out the important basics of an effective sales message, you're not going to see much success.
With all these opinions floating around out there, it's easy to loose sight of the basics; the simple strategies that have worked time and time again. As with anything, you first have to understand the fundamentals of selling before you start dealing with the fluff. There are four fundamentals I want to remind you of.
1. Remember that persuasion is not coercion -- you are NOT trying to force your audience into buying something they really don't need or want. You are offering your audience the information they need to figure out that they, in fact, DO want or need what you're selling. But they must come to this conclusion themselves...with a little help on your part <grin>.
2. You must show the logic of your point. Logical arguments are the most basic type of persuasion. If you can use facts, figures, or basic logic to help show that your product or service is useful to the customer, it is difficult for anyone to ignore. Be prepared to back up your sales message with facts, figures, statistics, and real testimonials.
3. Focus on your customer's emotions. Your sales pitch will always be more powerful if you include things that your audience has strong opinions or feelings about. For instance, if you know that your audience is afraid of losing their jobs or retirement savings (which a lot of people are these days), show how your product will help improve their financial security. You can use the same tactic when discussing your customer's values. We all value the basics of safety, freedom, and family...so try to tie your product or service into these things.
4. You need to inspire trust. It may seem unfair to some, but the kind of person (and business person) you are will affect how your prospects respond to your message. Therefore, you should do everything you can to prove your expertise, your trustworthiness, your kindness, and your passion for what you are doing. Be warm and personable, and know your audience well enough to talk to them on their level.
Any powerful, persuasive sales message incorporates all of these fundamental techniques: persuasion, logic, emotion, and trust. Remembering these fundamental tactics and how to make them work for you will benefit your customers AND your bottom line. You might want to print out this article (or at least the bullet points) and hang it somewhere in your office where you can see it. That way, the next time you find the fluff is getting in the way, you can get back to basics...and return to success.