The New Rules of Building Trusted Relationships
You have read several times that to get a customer or prospect to buy from you, you need to get them to trust you. Sales is based on relationships with your clients and those relationships are built on trust. Being persuasive, convincing, aggressive and pushing hot buttons are all part of the sales package, but if you do not win the prospect’s trust, then the sale is not going to happen. Here are a few ways to win a customer’s trust- without going over the top.
Rule number one: be yourself. Yes, when you go out on a sales call you are representing your business and your brand. You will be required to look and conduct yourself in a certain way. But allow some of your personality to show through. Most prospects get turned off by run-of-the-mill salespeople who act like…well, stereotypical salespeople. If you approach the prospect like a new face at a party, and talk to them genuinely and passionately about what you do, chances are, they will be willing to engage with you a lot more.
Everyone enjoys a little flattery. And everyone likes the feeling that they are well-known. Learn about your prospect. Not just superficial learning related to their industry, company or the problem they are facing, but what they are tracking and what they have their pulse on. What kind of conferences and seminars do they attend? What are their go-to sources for information and entertainment? Which media outlets do they interact with and keep track of? Follow what the prospect follows. And when you meet, you will have better insight into who they are actually, and you will be able to connect with them on a personal level- a great way to start a relationship.
BE GENUINE AND ASSERTIVE
You need to be genuine with your prospects and offer them real advice and insights. If you want them to trust you, then you need to make them feel that you value their time and business. You must be able to offer them something worthwhile. So, instead of making each conversation a jargon-laced sales pitch, be curious and spend more time listening to your prospect. When you show people that you are really interested, they will be willing to open up…and this gives you a chance to learn more and make more connections. Spend at least half your time listening to the customer.
Building trust is more about building a personal relationship with the prospect instead of merely conducting business. The more effort you put into gaining their trust, the better your chances of gaining a lifelong customer, no matter what product you sell!