We all know what it feels like to walk into a shop and are “pounced on” by the shop assistant – suddenly we feel as though we are being sold to which leads us to put up the protective barriers and exhibit classic signs of sales resistance. More often than not we disengage pretty quickly and many of us walk out of the shop shortly afterwards as most of us love to buy but hate feeling sold.
I doubt that too many of the people that are reading this post work in retail but this concept is undoubtedly one that is relevant to all. Our observations from field shadowing in meetings with a variety of our clients too often highlight that there is a lack of awareness around the atmosphere that we create when we sell which means like the shop assistant in the example above that we unintentionally create a selling atmosphere rather than buying atmosphere.
In the 1970s Dr. Albert Mehrabian concluded that communication was 7% verbal (the words we use) and 93% non-verbal (body langage, tone of voice etc.). While these figures are often debated the concept that it highlights is a critical one for any persuasive communicator to understand.
Those of us that are not consciously managing our physiology, our tonality, our speed and all the other non-verbal factors are likely to be delivering potentially valuable messages to a closed audience that is not hearing what we are saying.
Those of you that have attended our courses will probably have heard us talk about this idea and go through specific techniques on how you can create a buying atmosphere including the most important element of a sales conversation; listen before you pitch.
We would love to hear from the community on ways that you are consciously creating a buying rather than selling atmosphere in your meetings so please contribute to the discussion below.
Senior Consultant at SBR Consulting