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Why They Don’t Buy From YOU!

Can you lose something you never had? Careful how you answer.

You see, the “intelligent” response to my question is, “Of course not.” But intelligence has got nothing to do with this. Buying decisions are not logical. They don’t originate in the mind. They are emotional. They’re born in the heart.

Read on. Even if you’re a seasoned salesperson… Even if you’ve taken the ultimate sales course and think you’ve mastered persuasion. There are subtleties about the impulse to buy that can elude the best of us.

So, back to my original question. Here’s how you can lose something you never had. By attachment. This fascinating insight is covered brilliantly in a book I highly recommend called, Covert Persuasion, by Kevin Hogan and James Speakman.

The authors use a great example to drive their point home. They talk about a woman who has to choose between two guys in her life. They both have great qualities. They’re both available. And, they are like night and day. She is torn between them.

Okay. She’s a big girl, and she makes a choice. A good choice. She hooks up with one of them, and he’s a wonderful guy. But here’s the fly in her soup. She can’t let the other guy go in her mind. Actually, he’s trapped in her heart. But it’s her mind that’s playing tricks.

The funny thing is (not so funny for her) that “the one that got away” becomes even more attractive to her with time. This happens even though the man she’s with is wonderful.

What’s this got to do with your success in sales? Everything. Hogan and Speakman point out three bad things that can happen in a buyer’s mind (heart):

  • 1) Buyer’s Regret. We’re all familiar with that one; we’ve probably experienced it firsthand.
  • 2) Anticipated Regret. The person feels anxious about regretting her choice later. You probably know about that one too.
  • 3) Option attachment.

I don’t know about you, but the phrase option attachment was a revelation to me. That’s what our gal torn between two guys was going through.

Here’s how it affects your income in sales. This is a direct quote from Covert Persuasion. “Your customer who thinks too long will feel choosing is losing!”

Two words jump out at me in that sentence – thinks and feel. Mind and heart.

The vital lesson for you is to control the sales process so your buyer does not possess something in her mind that will make her feel regret or a sense of loss later.

When your customer/prospect is deciding between this and that of your product or service, make the decision process fair but fast.

There’s also the scenario when you are helping a person choose between different options. Should they buy leather seats or cloth? Should they choose the all chocolate two-week plan or the vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, one month plan? Make the person aware of the different options. Then, firmly and quickly guide her toward her better choice, and make it clear why the other choice is a no-no.

The subject of persuasion fascinates me. The more you know about it, the more you understand yourself. True persuasion is not manipulation. It is influence in the highest sense of the word. It’s the kind of influence that can help people stretch, grow, and enrich their lives.

You become a master of influence and persuasion when you take a courageous step into leadership. It is my sincere wish that you take that first step, then keep moving forward as you learn, grow, and prosper.