August 22, 2009
Selling is a tough job, and sometimes you may need to appear tough in order to get the sale.
As a salesperson (whether in person or in print) you don't have to appear to the customer as being needy of the sale. Many times, the opposite can work quite effectively, that is, to make the customer think of purchasing your product or service as a special privilege.
Here are a number of ways that you can "bully" the customer into buying from you.
1. State that only a LIMITED number is available.
This is a commonly used technique to push the customer over the finish line. Presenting your offer as limited in quantity nudges the prospect to act now since the offer may not be available later. Companies that manufacture luxury line vehicles often use this technique by manufacturing only in small batches. Think of Harley Davidson motorcycles for example. Only a limited number is manufactured so as to keep the price high.
A limited time offer works just as well, even though it is less compelling since the buyer may still procrastinate depending on the time window that is given. On the other hand, a limited number offer may go at any time. This places a bit more pressure on the prospective buyer.
2. Place pre-qualifications on the prospect before they can buy.
Many business opportunity type offers normally indicate that the company is looking for a "few top leaders" in a particular geographic area. You are then required to call and listen to a recorded message that will further 'qualify' you to work with the company. In this way the rejection is placed on the side of the customer not the seller.
Another slant to this same technique is to simply state that this offer is not for everyone. And only a few special people will recognize the offer for what it is. This of course appeals to the person's ego and pride. Again they are placed in the defensive position not the seller. They are the ones on the rope.
3. Show how most people will grab this offer.
This appeals to the "band-wagon" or "herd instinct" that is common to us as humans. We don't want to be left out of the new trend or crowd. It's all about 'keeping up with the Joneses'. Show how thousands have already ordered and how your operators cannot keep up with all the calls coming in. Any statement which can show that other people are flocking for this offer will work here.
4. Demonstrate very strong credibility in your copy.
By showing all the years of experience you have under your belt and the many authority figures that recommend your products, you can bully the customer into submission. The customer feels that it will be very foolish not to trust you when all these other top authorities do. Having someone whom the potential customer admires and respects endorse your product can create the magic here.
5. Show that you are not desperate for the sale.
This is another technique that can place the customer at ease or on the defensive. Here you want to indicate that you're already doing so well (mostly from the benefits you've derived from the product) that the small investment they are making will make no big difference to you. This may seem at first to be counterproductive but it works! Again if the prospect ever senses that you're just dying to get that sale you can scare them away.
Another way of stating this is to show that you're actually creating competition for yourself by sharing this product with them.
6. Tell them what will happen if they don't get your product.
Most likely your product is satisfying a need or solving a problem otherwise you'll not be selling it. So you can heighten the prospect's awareness of the problems that they'll continue to have if they choose not to purchase your product or service. Here is where you really want to 'rub their faces in the mud'. Spell out, in no uncertain words, the pain they'll endure and the loss they will suffer.
These six approaches are all based on a deep psychological principle that controls us all – Our desire heightens for whatever is denied us or just appears to be denied us.
This reminds me of the story I read some time ago of a small hotel that had problems with guests fishing from the balcony despite clear warning signs to the contrary placed in all the rooms. In a simple experiment, the hotel management removed the "no fishing" signs and the problem practically disappeared overnight! I guess that the thrill of fishing from the balcony vaporized with the signs-fishing was no longer denied.
Try making your product or service appear 'denied' to the casual prospect and see what happens to the dollars 'fished' out of your advertisement account.
It's about time to go out there and be a respectable "bully"!
(c) Copyright 2004 by Chris Coffman
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