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Make a Crazy Request, Close the Deal

When salespeople hope to close a deal, they may try doing favors for the client. In fact, scientists who study human behavior know that the opposite strategy can work: if you can get someone to do YOU a small favor, they are much more likely to grant a bigger one. This has been shown to work in many situations, including one experiment in which people agreed to have a large yard sign installed after first accepting a small window decal. A favor as simple as answering a request for the time of day can lead to granting more complex favors.

In my book Brainfluence, I suggest that a salesperson should ask for a cup of coffee or glass of water, or seek a tiny trial order, as a means of opening the door to closing a sale. Now, a set of experiments performed by Warsaw professor Dariusz Dolinski shows that there’s an even more powerful favor strategy. […]

By |August 7th, 2012|

Business, Sport, & Mark Cuban

Book Review: How to Win at the Sport of Business: If I Can Do It, You Can Do It by Mark Cuban

If you aspire to be a corporate drone marking time until five o’clock, or until retirement, don’t bother reading Mark Cuban’s new book, How to Win at the Sport of Business. If you are, or want to be, an entrepreneur, though, or even a corporate “intrapreneur,” this book will provide inspiration combined with practical advice.
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By |April 18th, 2012|

Nine Words Nearly Double Results

A few years after college, I took a position as a sales engineer. After one customer visit with no result, my boss queried, “Did you ask for the order?” In fact, just about every sales coaching book reminds new salespeople of the importance of asking for the order when the time is right. Similarly, solicitors for non-profits know how important it is to ask for the donation rather than simply providing the opportunity for the donor to do the right thing. A large study used the familiar Salvation Army fundraisers who solicit donations outside supermarkets to show how important the “ask” is. The study compared passive bell-ringing (the standard practice) to asking passers-by for a donation with these words, […]

By |December 19th, 2011|

Lunch: Your Secret Weapon

Top salespeople have often used lunch as a way to help bond with a customer and close a deal. Getting the customer out of the office allows for relaxed conversation and freedom from ringing phones and similar interruptions. Going beyond those obvious benefits, though, there’s research that shows messages are more persuasive when accompanied by food. […]

By |October 25th, 2011|

Sales Secret: The Best Time to Close

Want to close a sale? When choosing a time to meet with your customer, don’t just take the first appointment time offered to you. A recent study looked at decisions by judges, and revealed startling differences in […]

By |August 31st, 2011|

What’s Better Than an Excited Customer?

Think the way to sell more is to have a frenetic pitchman whip customers into a buying frenzy? Actually, relaxed customers are bigger spenders. A new study that will appear in the Journal of Marketing Research found […]

By |August 8th, 2011|

Selling to the Sleepy

Late-night infomercials and commercials often promote subjects like buying real-estate with no money down and other get-rich quick schemes. While these promotions are broadcast in the wee hours because air time is cheaper and more readily available, it turns out there’s solid science behind this timing. In a new study, Duke university researchers found significant differences in the way sleep-deprived subjects evaluated risk: […]

By |March 16th, 2011|

What Color Makes The Most Green?

Could wearing a particular color influence the results obtained by a salesperson? If that salesperson is selling to a buyer of the opposite gender, the answer may be, "Yes!"

By |August 30th, 2010|

Time to Get Touchy?

If you are in sales, do you touch your customers? In these litigious days, perhaps not. But there’s research that shows a woman’s light touch on a subject’s shoulder caused a change in risk-taking behavior. (Sorry, guys, it only worked for female touchers.) Research by Jonathan Levav of Columbia University and Jennifer Argo of the University of Alberta explored the relationship between being touched and subsequent behavior: […]

By |August 3rd, 2010|

Stories Synchronize Brains

An ongoing story (so to speak) here at Neuromarketing is the power of stories to engage readers and listeners. Now, there’s new brain scan evidence that shows a startling phenomenon: when one person tells a story and the other […]

By |July 29th, 2010|