Sales often gets brought up here and pumped up as essential but rarely supported by any content. This is a quick crash course to break down the mechanics involved in the selling process
Why Learn Sales
If you're early career you might not view sales as an important skill, but it will become a factor if you progress further in your career. In fact, most career paths progress into some form of sales responsibilities as you climb. Selling isn't just selling a product on a shop floor, it can be selling a multimillion dollar contract of services from business to business. Most industries and corporations are driven by such sales.
If you plan on starting a business, the selling will be 100% on you. It's not good enough to know how to do the job if you can't create the opportunity to do it
Sales skills are highly transferable. You use the same techniques to land jobs during interviews, in persuading others, and with girls too. It shouldn't be surprising that lots of old PUA stuff is picked straight out of sales training.
People love to buy. People hate to be sold to.
How many telemarketers or door to door sales people have you coldly rejected? Being sold to puts up people's defense. In the same way you can't walk up to a girl and convince her why she should fuck you, you have to make her want to fuck you. The buyer has to have agency over the decision.
So Why Do People Buy?
There's lots of buying motivators but I'd say the following 4 capture 90% of situations
1. Price. If it's the cheapest thing that does what it does many will buy it. But don't focus on price. People often mistake this as the most common buying factor but I'd say it's the least common, especially for higher value sales. Why do people use Uber Eats rather than go buy it themselves? Or why do so many people get car finance at the dealer when they can get better if they shop around? Because of...
2. Effort. Most decisions are made to avoid effort. Humans can only handle making so many decisions a day, making decisions, even trivial ones add stress. Studies have shown at a point the brain starts to shut down it's decision making process once you've hit your limit. We are wired to avoid making decisions and it is a conscious effort to not do this
3. Approval. They buy things because of other people. A guy buys a motor bike because he thinks it will make him look cool. He buys a minivan because that's what his wife wants. He buys a house in a certain neighborhood because his family likes the area. They buy a new IPhone because they want to fit in/keep up with their coworkers
4. Quality. Similar to approval but doing it for themselves. They genuinely want a sports car because they like to drive and not because they think others will like it, they buy furniture or artwork because they appreciate the craftsmanship, they buy the golf club that lets them hit further, etc.
How To Have People Communicate Their Buying Motives
Talk to them. duh. From the moment you see a person you should be looking for cues as to what type of person they are and what motivates them. If you're selling a house and they bring their family to the inspection then approval is important. If they are pedantic about every detail then effort is not. If they show up in an expensive car they're probably not buying because it's the cheapest.
A few tips on this though
Open Questions vs Closed Questions. Fact Questions vs Feeling Questions
A little side note on getting information from people. Don't ask closed questions.This isn't just about sales, if you have trouble with conversation flow, you are probably asking too many closed questions. A closed question has a yes/no answer, and open question forces them to put it in their own words.
Closed question: Do you like Summer?
Open question: How do you feel about summer?
This is more for girls than sales but try ask more feeling questions than fact questions otherwise it will turn into an interview
Fact question: You go hiking? Great, where do you hike?
Feeling question: You go hiking? How do you feel when you get out?
Connecting the Dots
So during your time with the person you should have collected enough information to determine their buying motivators. Next step is move it onto how that relates to a product. Your sales pitch has to focus around what THEY think is important, not what you think is.
Using a caryard as an example. If a guy is looking at a sports car because he's in a midlife crises then talk about your young buddy who has one with an awesome lifestyle. If they came in looking for a car with their wife and kids, don't try flog them off a 2 seat coupe. Show them a family car but also talk about how the features have been designed so it can be enjoyed as a family car. If you learned earlier about their concern of budget then talk a lot about how that choice will have a lower insurance premium or save on fuel economy rather than how many HP it has. Your goal is to validate their reasons to buy are good reasons and the product is the best at fitting their reasons. Forget what car you like.
Whether you're selling a cigarette lighter, a house or a billion dollar service contract you need to follow 3 steps
Validate their own buying motivation
Finally, same with girls, not all customers or contracts are meant to be, and you might not have the thing that suits them. That is OK. There's not need to plow. Just let it go and move onto the next one.