The Last Thing You Want to Be Doing is Trying to Convince Someone to Do Business with You
Heck, when it comes to life in general, the last thing you want to be doing is trying to convince someone of anything!
All you have to do is think about that for about…a second. What happens when someone tries to convince you? Do you just sit there and listen and consider and agree?
Not remotely close.
You dig in. You resist any other perspective that you haven’t already thought of. You know someone is trying to convince you, so you look for all the holes in their idea. You think about why what they are saying is not relevant to you. How they are wrong. You give them more reasons why your current view is better than anything they could ever dream of.
I could go on. This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to all the angles we can use to refute someone’s effort to convince us of anything we are not already convinced of.
And this is in everyday life. Add the next layer of someone trying to convince you to buy something, and you have an entire other bag of reasons and excuses that make it impossible for you to buy whatever it is😊
Given that there’s a need, everyone wants to buy. And no one wants to be sold.
An exception to this is when we are desperate. If we have reached a point where the thing we are struggling with feels like a giant question mark. We feel practically hopeless to do anything about it because everything we tried has failed and we don’t know what to think anymore. This can make us ripe for anything because we are vulnerable and we will grab onto any glimmer of hope.
Having said this, there are people who are absolutely incredible at persuasive communication who can sell the proverbial “ice to someone living in the arctic.” These are people who are incredibly skilled and have spent many years studying the aspects of this way of transacting business. And they do very well in whatever they do.
I can tell you that personally, I don’t enjoy the convincing approach, and I’m not alone. And here’s the cool thing…you can be massively successful in attracting customers, clients, and whatever else you are trying to do relative to business with people, without ever having to be a pro at presenting and persuasion.
You Want to Do Business with People Who WANT to Do Business with You.
Not people you have to convince. The key to making this happen on purpose, is to make doing business with you, THEIR idea.
I’ll give you the pathway for being effective in doing this.
First off, you have to be exampling whatever you are talking about. Ideally, you are already exemplifying the kind of results the other person is seeking, but that isn’t necessary to open the door for someone. As long as you are doing/using whatever it is, and experiencing progress, this is generally good enough for most people. Your personal experience will play a significant role in the pathway. The bottom line is that you have to be a participant in whatever it is. You can’t credibly suggest someone should do something you don’t do.
The first part of the discussion is about cultivating trust. Ideally there is already some level of trust, but maybe not. Telling someone to trust you doesn’t work. You have to behave in a way that invites it.
Assuming you have initiated a meeting, start by thanking them for their time. Then open the discussion by letting them know that whatever they decide in the conversation is fine with you. That your hope is to help in some way. That at no point will you pressure them. Your demeanor has to be friendly and comfortable. Then you set the stage by letting them know that the thing that matters most is to understand exactly what their needs and challenges are. If it is clear that you may have something that can serve them in improving things or accomplishing their objective, you’ll share some perspective and insights, and they can decide if they would like to explore further.
You are essentially letting them know that they are in control, which makes them feel comfortable which grows trust in the moment.
The next thing you do is ask some questions. Your goal is two-fold here. First is to make them feel understood. This is paramount. Only when someone feels you truly understand will they consider anything you have to say relevant. The second goal is to actually understand. This is so that when you share you are doing so appropriately and specifically addressing their issue. The focus is all about them.
The kinds of questions you could ask….
Why are you open to talking with me?
How long has this been an issue?
What have you tried?
You can phrase these kinds of questions, and others, however you like. The purpose is to get them to open up about the journey they have been on to solve the issue/accomplish the objective. You must listen intently. No interrupting. Encourage them to go deeper.
The more you let them talk, the more they will share. The more they share, the more they are trusting you. You are looking specifically for a few things in this conversation. What they didn’t like about their prior experiences in trying to solve the issue. Why they felt it didn’t work. What they are feeling about this. Be patient in this process and it will all come out most of the time. In most cases, this person is grateful that someone is listening and cares, as this is likely not happening in their daily life. Just your listening is creating an opportunity.
Keep in mind that if they weren’t open to a solution, they would not be in a conversation with you.
Once you have invested the time to help them feel understood, it’s time to transition to your sharing. Before you begin, you might ask, if there is anything else they’d like to share, or if there is a question you should have asked that you didn’t.
Once it’s your turn, start by thanking them for sharing, and express some empathy for their difficulty. Then, let them know you are going to share your experience and if they like what they hear, you are happy to further explore any details that are important to them.
Then share your story relative to the thing you believe will help them. You start this by talking about what led you to discover this in the first place. This helps them see why you believe in it and also makes them feel a connection with you.
You had an objective/problem you were trying to solve. Talk about the feelings this caused you (this is a huge trust builder and connecting point). Then share some of the things you also tried in your journey. Then share how you learned about this solution (that you can provide to them) and why you were willing to give it a shot. Then you share your experience with the thing you have to offer.
Many Important Things are Happening When You Do This.
You are telling a story. Human beings like stories. We connect with them on an emotional level. We do not think critically about stories in general, instead we picture them and are touched emotionally.
You are admitting that you learned something/discovered something and by sharing it you are allowing them to discover it to.
You are able to include why it is different from their prior experience by sharing how it is different for you, instead of saying something like “this is different because…” (which feels more like you are giving them reasons they should do something, i.e. convincing language).
Your discovery, having come at a time when you were looking for answers, is giving you results you weren’t getting before. This gives them hope. Hope is a powerful emotion. The hope comes from their emotional connection to the story and their process of considering could this happen for them too. An important thing to note here, is that your experience doesn’t have to be exactly like theirs. It is the fact that you had a struggle, which connects emotions, and then you solved it, that matters.
When you finish sharing, you simply ask if this is something they would like to learn more about. More often than not, the answer is yes and then you can talk specifically about what they want to know.
At this stage, you are now “sitting beside” them to show them what they want to know. You are guiding and helping them.
This is an incredibly effective way to transact any kind of business. Yes, there are nuances depending on what it is, but the general road map is easy to do for anyone, and enjoyable for everyone.
It’s easy to learn, enjoyable to do, and it works.
There is more depth on this in The Process. While this was written specifically for the home business industry, it has been used by people in all types of businesses to build sustainable success, because it is built on proven and broad-based fundamentals.
I hope you found this helpful.
Many Blessings, Todd
P.S. If you are in need of coaching or training for your organization, reach out to me.
P.S.S. The first order of priority in 3 Circles Living is physical health. A key aspect of this is complementing your diet with the best quality nutritional supplements you can find. If you would like to order the best, at wholesale prices, check out my 3 Circles Living online shop. If you have any questions or would like to address specific areas of need, shoot me an email and I’m happy to help. This has been an essential part of my health journey for 27 years and I’ve helped lots of folks along the way.