The "Sameness/Difference" Sales Technique
Do you know customers that have been in the same job since time began? Or that have the same lunch every day? Or lived in the same house for decades? In sales psychology terms we call them 'sameness' people. They simply don't like change, certainly not in the contexts mentioned.
Then again you may know customers who revel in change - at work, possibly at home, again it can depend on the context. We call these 'difference' people. There is no right or wrong - but if you can identify these particular characteristics in your customers, increasing sales is easy!
How about you?
When you think about buying new clothes for work do you think about getting clothes like the one so and so is wearing....or do you think about getting something that's different from the clothes they have?
Or how does your current job relate to what you were doing five years ago? Do you focus on the similarities or the differences? How about your current car...how does it relate to your previous one? Is it the same make - or totally different?
Have you got a feel yet for your own 'sameness' or 'difference' preference?
How does this help your selling skills?
If you can ascertain whether your customers are 'sameness' or 'difference' orientated, then you can tailor your language accordingly. You'll connect and engage with customers more deeply, more quickly - and achieve sales success.
Ask them a question such as "What's the relationship between your work this year and last year?" - an innocuous question that will elicit a reply which should provide you with some real nuggets of information. Your question needs to be worded in the correct context i.e. in this case work. And always use the word 'relationship'. Never substitute this for say 'difference' as to do so would corrupt their answer.
If their answer revolves all around how similar things are, then they are 'sameness' orientated, whilst if they talk along the lines of thing being completely different then they are 'difference' orientated.
Any ongoing conversation will help you decide their leanings. And remember they could lean a little to both camps i.e. "it's like before but ...."
What to do with the information?
To a customer with a 'sameness' preference: Begin by helping them identify commonalities and similarities before moving on to how your service or product is better. When talking about the differences frame them as small, gradual and evolutionary.
To a customer with a 'difference' preference: Talk about newness, uniqueness, how your product or service is different from things they have tried before. Introduce commonalities and similarities casually.
The main thing is to use language that will light up your customer - irrespective of your own natural tendencies.
Please ask if you would like to know more about this wonderful sales psychology technique.
Until next time...