What Most Sales People Miss

There is a vital ingredient that salespeople often overlook. While they are so exacting about what the pitch will be, how to communicate it from a verbal perspective, often they miss the non-verbals. 

Recently, I presented at a company sales conference. This conference brought together various sales representatives to train them on a variety of issues. In discussions with the management team leading up to the meeting, it became clear that most of their representatives became so focused on delivering the right words that they forgot to pay attention to the customer's cues. 

Most potential customers will leak clues through their body language. Once trained to look for those clues, you will be very responsive to "hidden" concerns. The trained eye can see when that customer hesitates and can use that to evaluate when to give information and when to hold back. 

Photo by  rawpixel  on  Unsplash

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Whether I’m working with pharmaceutical representatives, realtors, or financial planners, the one thing I've often seen overlooked is blocking cues. If a potential client blocks with body language – closes in their arms, moves a book in front of their torso, pulls a notebook in front of them – this can be a sign that they have some uncertainty with what you are saying. When a sales rep states a price, a potential customer will often use blocking body language. 

Next time you are trying to sell your product, look for these blocking cues and see if you can help the customer get past the hesitation. If this is when you tell them the price, use it as an opportunity to explain all the attributes of your product, what goes into every widget, and why it is valuable. The customer will feel that you hear the concerns.

Shelly O'Donovan