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, […]
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. […]
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: […]
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!"
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: […]
Every experienced sales manager has a trick or two when it comes to hiring the best candidate for an open sales position. After a candidate passes the initial resume screening process, one manager might check out the applicant’s shoes. Another might pay close attention to how well the individual responds to an unexpected question. Here’s a new one: does the candidate talk in a melodic way? […]
What are the ideal characteristics for a person in a sales position? Great people skills? Strong product knowledge? Add confidence to the list. Continuing a discussion started in Convince With Confidence, there’s more evidence that the average person finds a confident demeanor persuasive, even when the confidence may mask a lower level of competence. […]