The psychology of sales is fascinating.
And lucrative — when you understand it.
For instance, in “The Brain Audit” Sean D’Souza writes that if you leave any questions about your product or service unanswered in the buyer’s mind, even if the buyer has never articulated those questions to themselves, you won’t make the sale.
- make the buyer aware of their problem,
- offer the solution,
- address objections,
- provide social proof (testimonials),
- reverse the risk of doing business with you and
- persuade the buyer that you are the one person best qualified to solve their problem.
D’Souza talks about how closing all these loops in the buyer’s mind is like picking up your baggage from the airport. If even one bag fails to come down the chute, you wait.
You don’t leave the airport until you have all the bags.
You don’t make the purchase before you have all the bags.
In my opinion, you don’t always have the luxury of waiting around for all the bags. Sometimes you just got to get to where you’re going. Hang collecting all the bags for now. I think some insurance purchases are like this.
But generally speaking, I like D’Souza’s metaphor. And it does apply to most insurance purchase decisions.
Yesterday I gave you the first three principles of sales persuasion presented by Robert Cialdini in his book, “Influence, The Psychology of Persuasion.” http://insurancemarketingmadeeasy.com/6-principles-insurance-sales-persuasion-must-know-part-1/
The other three are authority, scarcity and reciprocity.
- Authority — Is your agency well established and does it have a strong brand? And what about you? You want to be liked, not pompous, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t let people know of the success you’ve achieved. Do have insurance designations? Have you served on boards? Do you belong to industry associations? Have you written articles, books? People feel confident dealing with people who have established authority in their fields.
- Scarcity — All I can say here is that there is only one you. There’s only one person who can do the job like you can do it, who will do the best job possible and if the prospect can find someone better, they should go for it. Right?
- Reciprocity – Robert Cialdini tells a story about a Boy Scout who tried to sell him tickets to a Jamboree. Cialdini declined but when the Boy Scout then offered him a couple of $1 chocolate bars, he bought them, despite the fact that he doesn’t even like chocolate.
This is reciprocity in action. Cialdini explains the transaction this way. After the Boy Scout got shot down for offering the event tickets he made the concession of offering something of lesser value. Cialdini felt compelled to reciprocate the gesture with a concession of his own; he bought the chocolate instead.
The lesson here is that by offering something of value to someone, even if the offer is declined, you create a reciprocal obligation of sorts. That’s why so many agents, especially agents who sell financial services, put on free seminars. Sending newsletters, especially print newsletters, can also build reciprocity.
Why did I specify PRINT newsletters just now? We’re talking perception here. People get 100s of emails a day. They know it costs next to nothing for you to send email newsletters, so there’s little perceived value in them. Even if they are purely informational and have no sales content, they can seem like a sales pitch. Not so much with PRINT.
The recipient knows you made the effort and paid for printing and postage to send them a PRINT version, when most other agents would have just sent them an email version.
Teach, build Trust and keep in Touch with clients and prospects.