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 Power of Influence


All sales professionals want to convince their customers to purchase from them and also to purchase sooner rather than later. Their level of influence on the customers decision ‘on when to buy’ directly is proportional to the relationship they establish during the sales cycle. In most interactions during a sale, the customer brings and controls their feeling of urgency as to when they make their purchasing decision. How can the sales people win that customer and also shift their sense of urgency to commit? How do the sales people move the customer down the road to making a decision? How do the sales people keep them committed to coming back for more? How do the sales people gain the bonus of the customers recommending them and their products to their acquaintances?
By building stronger relationships.

Relationships are built on three critical factors. They are:

face time, follow through, and the motive of sales person. Let’s address how each of these works to move a customer to making a decision in the sales peoples favor.

The business any sales person has won in the past is directly related to how much face time he/she had with the customer. The number of opportunities the customer allows the sales person to meet indicates the customer’s level of interest in what the sales person have to offer. The more meetings, the more interest. Customers accept a meeting when there is a clear purpose and value in getting together. The sales person earns the right to meet with the customer when his/her message is clear and concise as to the tangible value for the customer in his/her products and services.

For example, if the sales person has a proven track record of how he/she has helped others, customers are interested. If his/her agenda is entirely focused on the customer’s needs and issues, they know it! It’s a very positive sign when the customer is the one to initiate the next meeting. When the sales person use this face time wisely, the customer will come back for more.

Follow through is a huge indicator of character and credibility. Character and credibility strongly influence customer’s evaluation of whether or not if the sales person is the right person with whom they want to build a relationship and engage in ongoing business. Follow through is about putting the customer’s priorities ahead of everything else, and making this obvious to them. Follow through shows the customer what they can expect when they commit to the sales persons products and services. It sets an expectation of how the relationship will evolve as it moves forward. When the sales person start delivering results beyond the customer’s expectations he/she strongly capture their attention. Follow through is about being proactive on the customer’s behalf by doing what the sales person have learned is important to them - without even asking permission. The result is customer delight and enthusiasm.

The last critical factor in building strong customer relationships is the sales person’s motive. What motivates the sales person to close this business? Do he/she focus on the commission or the commitment to giving the customer what is in their best interest? If he/she is committed to solving the customer’s issues, first and foremost, the commission will follow. Customers are good at reading a sales person’s motives. They can see the facial expression and read their body language. How does the sales person respond to a delay in the sales cycle or a new customer objection that needs to be addressed? The customer can tell if the sales person is putting his/her own concerns before their interests. The sales person should clearly communicate that the heart of his/her interest is in continuing to address the customer’s needs. The result is customer commitment the sales person’s services.



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