Home > Social Influence > Sell More Today! Top 10 Methods of Manipulation

Sell More Today! Top 10 Methods of Manipulation

Have you ever felt manipulated by a customer or prospective customer? Have you ever felt that you could sell more today if only the customer or prospective customer would be more honest and straightforward? I am here to tell you that you are not alone.

Let's list the top 10 methods of manipulation by customer's or prospective customers and find ways to prevent or stop if from happening. - by Thomas
Have you ever felt manipulated by a customer or prospective customer? Have you ever felt that you could sell more today if only the customer or prospective customer would be more honest and straightforward? I am here to tell you that you are not alone.

Let's list the top 10 methods of manipulation by customer's or prospective customers and find ways to prevent or stop if from happening.
Thomas, my answer would be no to your first two questions. That said, I think in the early days of my career, I had occasion to feel that frustration.

I will however share a method of manipulation by a prospect that I have run into several times. It is the one where a prospect attempts to negotiate a low price based on an impending major volume purchase--and then with the unit price in hand, places an order for a small fraction of what had been discussed.

How do you prevent from getting stung? Don't bite. To be more specific, the key is to turn discussion immediately into the facilitation of the large purchase. It will usually smoke out the real intent behind the manipulation.

In many trades, buyers that do that acquire a reputation, and word spreads to the point where sellers become less vulnerable. - by Ace Coldiron
Have you ever felt manipulated by a customer or prospective customer? Have you ever felt that you could sell more today if only the customer or prospective customer would be more honest and straightforward? I am here to tell you that you are not alone.

Let's list the top 10 methods of manipulation by customer's or prospective customers and find ways to prevent or stop if from happening.
Thomas

I don't have one of your Top 10 but, I can tell you what I do to find out what the prospect is thinking so that I am not being manipulated...I listen. I listen and ask questions. No matter who it is people what to be heard so, if you listen they will tell you anything you want to know. It is very hard to manipulate someone that is listening to you intently. Ask questions and listen, when you do people have a tendency to more open and less manipulative.

warmest Regards - by MPrince
Right on Martha. - by Jim Klein
Thanks for the example Ace.

Martha, I listen to prospects. I even listen between the lines because I have to because the average person's communication skills stink and I mean that. Last weak I was standing in line at a convenience store. The guy ahead steps up when it's his turn and forcefully says to the clerk, "15". The clerk looks at him for a couple of seconds, smiles and says, "Ok, you want a receipt for gas on pump #15 right?" The guy looks at her as if "15" couldn't mean anything else, takes his receipt and walks away. This pissed me off and I don't even work there. I said to her, "You are good. How did you get all of that out of "15"? She said the pump's receipt machine broke last week and she's used to if by now. For someone like me who didn't know that how in the hell would I have connected the dots?

I strayed, back to my point. Some people are going to manipulate you whether you listen or not. Nobody says, "I'm going to call up that company with the intent of gleaning the information I need to get the job done myself... unless they listen to me." The sooner salespeople realize that customers and prospective customers can and will manipulate to serve their own purposes the better prepared they can be. Forewarned is forearmed. - by Thomas
The sooner salespeople realize that customers and prospective customers can and will manipulate to serve their own purposes the better prepared they can be. Forewarned is forearmed.
The real answer, I think, is that, in most cases, salespeople can't prevent customers from serving their own best interests.

But we can become better at selling so that it doesn't matter so much.

Skip - by Skip Anderson
But we can become better at selling so that it doesn't matter so much.
Why would it not matter as much? - by Thomas
The real answer, I think, is that, in most cases, salespeople can't prevent customers from serving their own best interests.

But we can become better at selling so that it doesn't matter so much.

Skip
I totally agree Skip! - by MPrince
Why would it not matter as much?
Because when focuses on something they can't change, and resists accepting the reality of a situation, they will burn up their energy, become negative, become less effective, and eventually be their own worst enemy.

But if one is selling successfully, while still recognizing that prospects will pursue their own best interests, all (or most) of the negativity doesn't play as big of a role, therefore, there is less of a propensity to become negative, less propensity to become less effective, and less likely for one to become their own worst enemy. - by Skip Anderson
Because when focuses on something they can't change, and resists accepting the reality of a situation, they will burn up their energy, become negative, become less effective, and eventually be their own worst enemy.

But if one is selling successfully, while still recognizing that prospects will pursue their own best interests, all (or most) of the negativity doesn't play as big of a role, therefore, there is less of a propensity to become negative, less propensity to become less effective, and less likely for one to become their own worst enemy.
Since in most cases, salespeople can't prevent customers from serving their own best interests how should the salesperson prepare and if necessary respond? - by Thomas
Thomas, my answer would be no to your first two questions. That said, I think in the early days of my career, I had occasion to feel that frustration.

I will however share a method of manipulation by a prospect that I have run into several times. It is the one where a prospect attempts to negotiate a low price based on an impending major volume purchase--and then with the unit price in hand, places an order for a small fraction of what had been discussed.

How do you prevent from getting stung? Don't bite. To be more specific, the key is to turn discussion immediately into the facilitation of the large purchase. It will usually smoke out the real intent behind the manipulation.

In many trades, buyers that do that acquire a reputation, and word spreads to the point where sellers become less vulnerable.

As general operating procedure, I'm as open as possible about the variables that go into my pricing. If a volume-based discount is offered, I make clear both the level of discount from our standard pricing as well as the fact that this price is contingent on their commitment to that volume.

Terms of a deal (price, volume, standards, payment terms, etc.) should all remain fluid and in flux until everything is locked in. If they change a variable, you have the right to change a variable.

To remind myself of this, I use the acronym TACOW - Tentative Agreements Contingent On the Whole.

This concept should help keep you focused and hopefully transparent about your process with your customers. It's saved me from being manipulated many a time.

As another tip, I don't recommend making "concessions." Instead, look to make value-based tradeoffs. Should they push back on price, don't just reduce yours - remove something of value from the proposal. The choice is then theirs which package to take.

Best,
Stephen - by sfrenkel
Since in most cases, salespeople can't prevent customers from serving their own best interests how should the salesperson prepare and if necessary respond?
I agree that customers lie. It's a fact of selling.

How do you "prepare?" You be a good salesperson with good skills.

First is acceptance of the reality of lying customers.

Second is skepticalness, developing your own sales wisdom, perceptiveness, ability to ask proper questions, get agreements before proceeding, trial closing, closing, etc.

A magic pill doesn't exist, but good selling skills are the best bet in dealing with realities of all types, imo.

Skip - by Skip Anderson
I agree that customers lie. It's a fact of selling.

How do you "prepare?" You be a good salesperson with good skills.

First is acceptance of the reality of lying customers.

Second is skepticalness, developing your own sales wisdom, perceptiveness, ability to ask proper questions, get agreements before proceeding, trial closing, closing, etc.

A magic pill doesn't exist, but good selling skills are the best bet in dealing with realities of all types, imo.

Skip
That's what I'm talking about. thmbp2; - by Thomas
I agree that customers lie. It's a fact of selling.

How do you "prepare?" You be a good salesperson with good skills.
Or just call the customer on the lie.
Customer: "XYZ dealership gave me the exact same vehicle for 1000 dollars cheaper."
Response: "Really Mr. Customer? Just curious, why is it you didn't buy there?"

Customer: "XYZ Dealership is giving me 3000 more on my trade."
Response: "Great!!! Who did you talk to? Let's call them up and have them cut you the check, then we don't have to worry about the trade."

First is acceptance of the reality of lying customers.

Second is skepticalness, developing your own sales wisdom, perceptiveness, ability to ask proper questions, get agreements before proceeding, trial closing, closing, etc.
TOTAL AGREE! Get minor comitments through out the deal to lead up to the major comitment of the purchase.

We showing a customer out the door price of $24000, he counter offers with a price of $20,000.

"So just to make sure I understand you, if we can get you the vehicle for $20,000, we have a deal? Were you looking at paying with that cash or check? Make the check out to......... Now Mr. Customer I am not sure I can get you the $20k but let me see how close I can get you to that ok?"

A magic pill doesn't exist, but good selling skills are the best bet in dealing with realities of all types, imo.
Skip
No shortcuts to success!! You mean I have to work for it? Aww man! stcktng; - by jrboyd
This discussion look like it has run its course so I am closing the thread. - by Jeff Blackwell
Weekly Updates!
Questions and Answers about Selling
Subscribe to our mailing list to get threads and posts sent to your email address weekly - Free of Charge.