Does anyone remember the days when you walked into a prospects/client’s office and simply stated what you had, what it did, how it did it, why they needed it and when did they want it? I do. I also know if you are doing this, you may not be getting the results you want, or need.
Those days are long gone and I for one am so happy they are. There was no ‘getting to know the prospect’ time. All we wanted to do was walk in, tell them all about the newest thing and get out with an order if we could. The sad part was, we walked out more often without the order than with. Then, things started to change and we began the ‘bonding and rapport’ process.
It was not a miraculous concept, it simply meant we started to get to know our clientele better. We slowed the process down. The end results were more sales orders than before.
All we were doing was building an emotional connection with the prospects or clients. We started doing this in the first meeting. The focus had changed. Before even starting with what we had, we wanted to lower any barriers that existed. Furthermore, we began to set agendas so every stakeholder in the relationship knew what was going to happen, how it was going to happen and what the outcome was going to be.
Simply put, we stopped hurrying. The focus became, and still is, build the emotional connection before starting the actual sales meeting. Science and studies have found without an emotional connection there will be no sale. Period.
It is during this period where your credibility, likeability, and trustworthiness is established. It is where the prospect or client decides if there is enough of those qualities to move ahead to the next step. Obviously, if they are a client, you have already established enough of these. However, this does not mean you stop piling on the things which got you this far with the client.
You must continue to build your trust and likeability. We have said it many times: “People buy from people they trust and like.” There is never too much trust. The more you pile on the more goodwill you establish in the unlikelihood of a sideways scenario where everything went wrong.
In other words, if there is a time where there is a major challenge, they are more likely to forgive it and continue to do business with you.
The only way you can continue to not only build the trust, as well as the likeability and credibility, is to make sure you do not rush the process. Take your time to get to know them as well as let them get to know you in order to foster the emotional tie to each other.
“This takes time.” Yes, I can hear you screaming. You forgot to say: “And time is money.” Could not agree with you more. However, the extra time you take by not rushing increases your win probability. By increasing the win probability, you will decrease the amount of meeting you actually need to be successful. This extra time, can, therefore, be used to do all the pre-meeting steps necessary for the next meeting where trust, likeability and your credibility has to be established.
The old way was not only rushed, but it also had a low probability for a win. The new way is not only easier and more comfortable, but it also increases the odds of the win astronomically.
Therefore, as the old adage goes, ‘work smarter, not harder.’