Is a Sales Transaction a Logical or Emotional Decision?

By Nancy Stiver

This is certainly an interesting question. The answer is both. The problem is all too often the salesperson’s approach and is presented from a completely logical perspective. Upon first review it seems to make sense to present logical reasons why a prospect should buy your product or service. If what a salesperson is offering to the potential customer is a better option than what they are currently using, many salespeople think that all a prospect needs to hear are the features and benefits in order for a prospect to buy the product they are offering. If only it were that simple. Sadly, this approach often ends as a no-sale or it lengthens the time before a decision is made. Sales is a process and it is the job of the salesperson to guide a prospect through the emotional steps so the prospect can make a logical decision that is good for them.

The mind acts emotionally and then it responds cognitively. The initial reaction is synthesized through the limbic system, or more commonly known as the emotional brain. Most salespeople approach the prospect from a logical perspective at the onset, while the prospect is in the emotional state of not trusting. Trust is an emotion and it must be achieved before there is a sale. People buy from people they know, like and trust. If the time is not taken to bridge the gap from the emotional to the logical brain, there will be no sale.

Studies have shown that the first word that comes to mind when asked to describe a salesperson is overwhelmingly pushy. No one wants to be sold anything, but people do love to buy. If your approach is initially from the logical perspective, and you do not take the time to build rapport and trust before transitioning to the thinking brain there will be no sale.

I will never forget one of my biggest disappointments in sales. It was a lesson that I learned a lot from, and a turning point in my career. I had all the analytics to show a prospect that they were losing money by doing business with my biggest competitor. To me, the facts were compelling, and I was confident that my company would be awarded the business. I started my presentation and made what I thought was a convincing case for earning their business. When he rejected my offer I was stunned, and of course thought the executive should lose his job for not making a good business decision. I kept that opinion until I did more research on the science of sales. I realized I never built the trust. More than likely the prospect stayed in the emotional state of distrust. Had I guided him through the process with better tools, the outcome may have been different. I did learn from this experience, and there is a happy ending. I continued to call on the prospect, and we built a rapport and eventually entered into an agreement to do business.

Instead of approaching the sale logically from the beginning, it is important to understand that the prospect is in the emotional state, and to approach it from that perspective. This really is where the bridge is starting to be built, so that the salesperson transitions the prospect to the thinking brain. How is that accomplished?

The salesperson must give the illusion that the prospect is in control. One of the easiest ways is to get early nos. When the prospect says no they feel as if they are in control. At this point the salesperson can begin to gain trust by asking questions about what is needed or important to the prospect.

Once the question is asked, it is imperative for the salesperson to listen to what is being said, without trying to figure out a way to overcome their objections. If a salesperson listens to the prospect, the prospect will tell the salesperson how to earn the business. To be effective, a salesperson must learn to repeat what the prospect said, in order to fully understand the prospect's needs. By backtracking, one of three things will take place, and all are positive for the process: • The prospect will hear what you say, and may decide that their previously stated issues are no longer a concern • They prospect will be honored that you listened to them and understood • It gives the salesperson time to respond

When the prospect feels understood, rapport and trust will begin to develop. They will feel that the salesperson cares about coming up with a solution to their problem, and if everything is intact, the sales process has much better odds of happening if they think the problem is solved and they see the value in the offering. This happens when the salesperson guides the prospect to the logical part of the mind. The time this process takes will vary depending on the product or service.

If you are struggling in sales, or contemplating a career in sales, we can help. Lavinia Capital Partners have highly successful and experienced sales professionals and trainers who are experts in the field and we offer in-person classes as well as online training courses in sales.

More publications by Nancy Stiver

By Nancy Stiver - Corporate Coach
What does it take to be fearless? Associates of mine have always had the impression that I fear nothing. That certainly is not true. I have never been fearless. What drives me through the fear is an internal voice, a voice which has the power to propel me to success. Equally, my ...
By Nancy Stiver - Corporate Coach
I am sure you’ve heard expressions like this to describe salespeople: “That person is a born salesperson,” or “They could sell ice to Eskimos.” To me those sayings are what is wrong with sales, and why studies have shown it to be one of the least desirable careers to go into. Dan...
By Nancy Stiver - Corporate Coach
Who is on your sales team? The answer goes way beyond the people that are actually on your sales team. Each and every employee in your organization is on your sales team. From the receptionist to the cleaning crew all the way to the top of the company, everyone is selling your bu...
By Nancy Stiver - Corporate Coach
This is certainly an interesting question. The answer is both. The problem is all too often the salesperson’s approach and is presented from a completely logical perspective. Upon first review it seems to make sense to present logical reasons why a prospect should buy your produc...
By Nancy Stiver - Corporate Coach
Being in the business world for over thirty years, I have always marveled at people’s success, and one of my first questions when meeting someone new has been, “What made you select this occupation, or what gave you the inspiration to start your business”? Overwhelmingly, the res...

More publications by Our Staff

Why are willing to pay $150 for a meal at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse but not at Denny’s? Because of perceived value. Consumers are constantly evaluating cost vs perceived value using an undefined formula to arrive at a justifiable price. One could attach a formula to that process to...
Customer defections happen all too often and are often caused by sloppy strategies, a lack of training and poor leadership. A customer makes two decisions, the first is the one to start doing business and the second decision is to stop doing business. When a customer defects, b...
Freud believed that personalities are broken into three components: id, ego and superego. The id being the part of our personalities that provide our animal instincts - things like satisfying hunger or sexual desire, for example. The superego is the component that tells us to do ...
Are you memorable? Is your business memorable? Are your employees memorable? You may very well be memorable, but unfortunately the memory may be negative. The way a customer remembers you is either positive, negative or indifferent. Which type of memory your customer has is entir...
Have you considered how others see you? In business or online? How are you showing up? A photograph is the fastest way to convey a message without words. What I am talking about is your BRAND. The definition of brand : A brand is a name, term, design, symbol or any other featur...
Great ideas are the catalyst for propelling a businesses to success. The evolution of an idea is concept, planning, buyin, implementation, assess, follow up and modification. How often does it happen when you or your team comes up with a great idea for something that will add pro...
Just exactly what is strategy? By definition, strategy is a plan of action or policy designed to achieve a major or overall aim. It has always amazed me that many businesses do not have a clear operating strategy. They exist on what has worked in the past, and that’s good enough....
Emotion by definition is a natural instinctive state of mind deriving from one's circumstances, mood, or relationships with others. Understanding how emotions affect revenue will help you grow your top line and achieve higher profits. Many businesses fail to understand how their...
The keynote at a major sales event in Puerto Rico was to be delivered by the chairman of the board. He would deliver the same speech in a second event for corporate and regional sales-people in New York a month later. Due to a schedule conflict the chairman chose to send his spee...
What's the first thing you notice when you walk into a business, restaurant or home? What do you see? Do you see a place that’s inviting, or a place that needs work? Is what you see professional-looking, hip, trendy, or is it disorganized and outdated? Does what you see meet or e...

Lavinia Capital Partners

Phoenix - Los Angeles - Minneapolis

inquiry@laviniacapital.com
(602) 644-1956