I’m a huge fan of Simon Sinek’s work…. more than 28 million have watched his TED Talk based on his book “Start With Why” … the third most popular TED video of all time.
I came across another of his presentations recently in which he was looking at how the human body responds to acts of generosity. When someone demonstrates some form of generosity or help to us, the body releases the hormone oxytocin, and it’s this hormone that gives us that warm, fuzzy feeling. It’s the same hormone that helps us fall in love and to form close personal bonds with others.
Now, don’t get me wrong… I’m not suggesting for one minute that we should try to get our customers and prospects to fall in love with us, at least not literally, but there’s still something hugely important in understanding what this means to those of us tasked with selling products and services.
And that something is that buying decisions are made on two levels … logical and emotional. If we simply “pitch” the features and benefits of our product, whilst it might appeal to the prospect’s sense of logic, it’s unlikely to appeal on an emotional level, unless they’re able to immediately see the real value of whatever it is we’re offering.
Let’s take a simple example. We’ve decided we need to put up a shelf to hold that pile of books we have sitting in the corner of the room, but we don’t have the right size drill bit. So we go to the local DIY store, browse the shelves and pick the correct drill bit, take it to the checkout and pay for it. It’s a basic logical buying decision. We’ve selected a product that meets our functional need; a drill bit that’s the right size and is capable of drilling a hole into a brick wall. Sounds straight forward enough but is it the full picture?
Not really. Whilst logic has helped us select the right product, there’s also an emotional angle we might consider; the impact that putting the shelf up might produce. We might feel proud of completing a DIY task (I know some of us hate this stuff), we might feel satisfaction that the untidy pile of books in the corner has disappeared or we might feel less stressed that we’ve finally completed a job that our partner has been asking us to do for weeks. All of these elements appeal to our emotional side. They make us feel good.
Now I’m not for one minute suggesting that DIY stores should start to use this approach in promoting drill bits, but hopefully you get the picture; the more we can help our prospective customer or client understand how your product or service will genuinely help them, the more likely we are to appeal to their emotional decision making process as well as their logical process. This is Simon Sinek’s “WHY”.
In other words, the more we show how we can help our prospects, the more likely they are to want to buy from us.
As the late, great Zig Ziglar once said … Stop Selling and Start Helping.
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