Home > Consumer Behavior > It's decision time.

It's decision time.

Here's a scenario that is extremely useful for clearing the thoughts.

One corporate buyer. (only 'corporate' to help with the scenario)

Let's assume her company is in the market for whatever is being sold and wants to make a purchase.

She's had two presentations.

The products are about the same.

Nothing too much different price wise.

Both companies have similar reputations.

Features and benefits neck and neck.

Customer service and company reputation very similar.

In fact each product pretty well identical.

Who does she decide to buy from?

The answer will tell you more about sales than almost anything else you'll ever learn.

Have fun - by helisell
She is going to buy from the guy/gal who makes this sale a benefit to her because she will be able to free up her time or her bosses time from having to think about this sale's completion. It could be delivery, color, timing savings, storage of product, whatever, she is going to buy from the person who makes her more valuable to her company. Her importance to her company, or her boss.

In my opinion anyways.... :)

Aloha... :cool: - by rattus58
Here's a scenario that is extremely useful for clearing the thoughts.

One corporate buyer. (only 'corporate' to help with the scenario)

Let's assume her company is in the market for whatever is being sold and wants to make a purchase.

She's had two presentations.

The products are about the same.

Nothing too much different price wise.

Both companies have similar reputations.

Features and benefits neck and neck.

Customer service and company reputation very similar.

In fact each product pretty well identical.

Who does she decide to buy from?

The answer will tell you more about sales than almost anything else you'll ever learn.

Have fun
All else being the same she'll buy from whomever it is easier to buy from... ie. less hoops to jump through... salesperson who is more prompt... whoever asks for the sale first and makes the purchasing process seamless and clear to her. - by Andrea
The person she likes more. - by Ace Coldiron
It's about the relationship (trust, belief, etc.) between the buyer and the seller. - by Swamprat
Ace....Ive decided I want to have your babies - by helisell
Here's my next question.

If one of the products/company's was slightly superior but the salesperson was less likeable.....who would be more likely to get the sale? - by helisell
Here's my next question.

If one of the products/company's was slightly superior but the salesperson was less likeable.....who would be more likely to get the sale?
If the difference 'slightly superior' didn't make THE difference, again it would hinge on the relationship (trust, belief, etc.) between the buyer and the seller. - by Swamprat
Here's a scenario that is extremely useful for clearing the thoughts.

One corporate buyer. (only 'corporate' to help with the scenario)

Let's assume her company is in the market for whatever is being sold and wants to make a purchase.

She's had two presentations.

The products are about the same.

Nothing too much different price wise.

Both companies have similar reputations.

Features and benefits neck and neck.

Customer service and company reputation very similar.

In fact each product pretty well identical.

Who does she decide to buy from?

The answer will tell you more about sales than almost anything else you'll ever learn.

Have fun
Here's my next question.

If one of the products/company's was slightly superior but the salesperson was less likeable.....who would be more likely to get the sale?
That's a strategic issue, helisell--specifically involving the strategy principle of IMBALANCE.

Here, you might not get the answer you're looking for from me, but I know you'll appreciate what I'm saying because of your own advanced level.

The strategic answer is that the sale will most likely go to the person who ACTS on the imbalance, having recognized it.

Strategically, that means turning small advantage into bigger advantage with the introduction of a surprise to tip the scales more. Surprises should always come towards the end of the process. It must have value, and it could take many forms depending on the UNIQUE circumstances present.

Key words here: Imbalance, ACT, Introduce, Surprise. - by Ace Coldiron
Mmmmnnnnn.....too late to 'act' on anything in my imaginary (though oft witnessed from both sides of the fence) scenario.

Presentations have been made.

Salespeople involved are now totally reactive and are very unlikely to be allowed further input into the decision making process.

Where does the smart money go? - by helisell
If you want to get down to brass tacks it really comes down to the buyer's Values. Since everything else is off the table it has come down to the relationship between the buyer and the seller. The buyer will do business with the person he wants to do business with based on his own personal values (what's more important).

Think "what's in it for me" and "need satisfaction". - by Swamprat
I've had a chance to look at this again, and Ace probably hit it best, all else being equal, who she likes the most, but ASSUMING she likes both the same, it more than likely it's going to come down to TRUST. That and who provides the most "What's in it for me as I mentioned earlier".... :)

Much Aloha.... :cool: - by rattus58
Here's my next question.

If one of the products/company's was slightly superior but the salesperson was less likeable.....who would be more likely to get the sale?
I like the thread and I'll hold fast with the person she likes more.

But as an aside, I don't accept your imaginary scenario of it being too late to "act". However, that's not the point and I like where you're going with this. - by Ace Coldiron
If one of the products/company's was slightly superior but the salesperson was less likeable.....who would be more likely to get the sale?
In my experience people like to buy from people they know, like and trust. The prospects don't have to like you, they could hold a neutral attitude, but if they Dislike you then you have an uphill battle ahead of you. - by Vito
Helisell, as it relates to your hypothetical example what's your opinion of what others have posted about Like/Neutral/Dislike, Know-Like-Trust, Values-What's in it for me - Need Satisfaction? - by Vito
Looking at . . .
Know
Like
Trust

What about these combinations.

If they like you but don't trust you = No Chance
If they trust you but don't like you = Also No Chance
(I've personally witnessed multi $mill deals be placed with a competitor because the salesperson simply was not 'liked')

A function of 'knowing' you is whether they like and/or trust you.

It's starting to look like trusting and liking are of equal importance?

I think we have to take trust out of the equation because it has to be a 'given'

It looks like.....'liking you' is an extremely important factor......

I would go further and say it outranks knowledge (product and competitor/market), it outranks closing ability, activity, price, value.......call me insane if you wish but......

Removing negative emotions and replacing them with posistive ones (we call it making friends) is the most fundamental part of ANY sales process.

Without that...it don't matter what you got....they won't be having it. - by helisell
Helisell, I agree that "dislike" can and most likely will result in "no chance" however I can't imagine taking "trust" out of the equation or worse making it a "given". Customers don't have to like you, they can hold a neutral attitude, however they must trust you at least to the level of the transaction. - by Vito
It is GIVEN that they HAVE to trust you.

The scenario is 2 presentations have already been made.

All else being equal who has more chance
the one they feel neutral about?

Or the one they 'Like'? - by helisell
It is GIVEN that they HAVE to trust you.

The scenario is 2 presentations have already been made.

All else being equal who has more chance
the one they feel neutral about?

Or the one they 'Like'?
If the question is as simple as who will get the deal a salesperson the buyer likes or a salesperson the buyer dislikes with everything else being equal then I believe the answer is obvious. However, rarely is all else equal because buyers are people with personal needs.

EXAMPLE:

The presentations have already been made and everything relating to the offer can be assumed to be more or less equal. The business needs are satisfied with either option. Now the decision is who to give the business to.

Buyer "likes" Seller A.

Buyer holds a "neutral" attitude for Seller B.

However, Seller B is good friends with the head of the membership committee at the private golf course the Buyer has been trying to become a member of and thinks Seller B might be able to help him get that memebership. In addition to that, Seller B is the son of a long time friend of the Buyers and awarding the business to his son might earn him points with his friend. In the mind of the Buyer these are both high Value personal needs.

Give the business to Seller A and only the business needs are satisfied.

Give the buiness to Seller B and the business needs AND possibly two high value personal needs are satisfied.

Now, who get's the business? - by Vito
If the question is as simple as who will get the deal a salesperson the buyer likes or a salesperson the buyer dislikes with everything else being equal then I believe the answer is obvious. However, rarely is all else equal because buyers are people with personal needs.

EXAMPLE:

The presentations have already been made and everything relating to the offer can be assumed to be more or less equal. The business needs are satisfied with either option. Now the decision is who to give the business to.

Buyer "likes" Seller A.

Buyer holds a "neutral" attitude for Seller B.

However, Seller B is good friends with the head of the membership committee at the private golf course the Buyer has been trying to become a member of and thinks Seller B might be able to help him get that memebership. In addition to that, Seller B is the son of a long time friend of the Buyers and awarding the business to his son might earn him points with his friend. In the mind of the Buyer these are both high Value personal needs.

Give the business to Seller A and only the business needs are are satisfied.

Give the buiness to Seller B and the business needs and possibly two high value personal needs are satisfied.

Now, who get's the business?
This gets down to the "what's in it for me" realm in my opinion and I believe that if you recognize personal benefits try to exploit it if its reasonable to do so.

Much Aloha... shds;;bg - by rattus58
If she likes seller A best...then more than only business needs are being met. - by helisell
If she likes seller A best...then more than only business needs are being met.
Let's say that "personal needs" are being satisfied, as you are suggesting, then it would come down to "Values" (Which needs are more important?) and "Value" (Which choice offers me more of what I want?). - by Vito
I wasn't suggesting that personal needs are being met by her liking salesman A.

I was suggesting that more than just business needs were being met. - by helisell
I was suggesting that more than just business needs were being met.
Would you care to elaborate? - by Vito
The ultimate decision to buy or not buy will be based on many factors.
The importance of the 'like/not like' factor is much much higher than it is credited with.

It is a very important factor . . . . yes?

I keep reading about cold call funnels, closing techniques... 'double half nelson' 'ask back' 'Winston Churchill' 'Abraham Lincoln' technique . . .etc etc

None of them worth a hill of beans if the human bond of niceness and likeability are not present...it's all a waste of time.

I've spent many years managing sales staff 'live' on the phone whilst they were with business clients for some big ticket products.

My standard conversation is always:
'Where 'exactly' are we up to?'
'Are you talking to the decision maker?'
'Do they like you?'

After many thousands of these conversations, the third question was always the deal maker/breaker......ALWAYS. . . . No Exceptions - by helisell
The ultimate decision to buy or not buy will be based on many factors.
The importance of the 'like/not like' factor is much much higher than it is credited with.

It is a very important factor . . . . yes?

I keep reading about cold call funnels, closing techniques... 'double half nelson' 'ask back' 'Winston Churchill' 'Abraham Lincoln' technique . . .etc etc

None of them worth a hill of beans if the human bond of niceness and likeability are not present...it's all a waste of time.

I've spent many years managing sales staff 'live' on the phone whilst they were with business clients for some big ticket products.

My standard conversation is always:
'Where 'exactly' are we up to?'
'Are you talking to the decision maker?'
'Do they like you?'

After many thousands of these conversations, the third question was always the deal maker/breaker......ALWAYS. . . . No Exceptions
Great post. A powerful post for people who come to SalesPractice wanting to know sales so they can do the best for themselves and their families. It's a wonderful profession but it takes understanding. - by Ace Coldiron
Thanks Ace.

I only take the 'Socratic' route with my posts if I think it will help . . .

An interesting point from your last post ...'themselves and their families'

Does the customer come first?
Or someone else?

For me they are all important people but always in this order of importance

1. Me
2. My kids and partner.
3. My employer (they pay me ultimately)
4. The customer

The customer is obviously of extreme importance to me ....but they are still 4. on my list.

This is a great profession as you say, and we can only be of great benefit to our families if we take the trouble to learn it.

Hear! hear! - by helisell
Post Deleted by Moderator - by Vito
Post Deleted by Moderator - by helisell
Post Deleted by Moderator - by Vito
Post Deleted by Moderator
Dear Moderator, for some reason my post was deleted. Helisell and I were having a very friendly and informative conversation. There was nothing about our conversation that went against the spirit or the rules of this forum. If you have your own personal rules that you are moderating by would you be kind enough to let everyone else in on them so that we can play by those rules too? - by Vito
Dear Moderator, for some reason my post was deleted. Helisell and I were having a very friendly and informative conversation. There was nothing about our conversation that went against the spirit or the rules of this forum. If you have your own personal rules that you are moderating by would you be kind enough to let everyone else in on them so that we can play by those rules too?
Vito... Don't sweat it, move on. If you've only had one deleted, feel blessed and learn from your experience, as it took me much longer to "get it".

We're here to learn so just rephrase your answer to be more specific, if that is what's needed.

Much aloha.... :cool: - by rattus58
Vito... Don't sweat it, move on. If you've only had one deleted, feel blessed and learn from your experience, as it took me much longer to "get it".

We're here to learn so just rephrase your answer to be more specific, if that is what's needed.

Much aloha.... :cool:
Will do! Thanks for the tip. thmbp2; - by Vito
Dear Moderator, for some reason my post was deleted. Helisell and I were having a very friendly and informative conversation. There was nothing about our conversation that went against the spirit or the rules of this forum. If you have your own personal rules that you are moderating by would you be kind enough to let everyone else in on them so that we can play by those rules too?
7. Flaming

Please be respectful of each other. It's not uncommon that some members will have differing opinions on a topic. Do not post any messages that harass, insult, belittle, threaten or flame another member or guest. Personal attacks against people, or sites will not be tolerated. If you have an issue with someone or their site, take it up with them personally.


To attempt to insult another member and obvious professional who is in disagreement with you by asking for a definition of the verb "to like" and the noun "likeability", which are words familiar to first graders, is an insult, and an attempt to belittle that member.

That is the reason your post was deleted, and the reason why future posts will be deleted, or your membership cancelled, if you continue with that behavour.

It won't be tolerated.

Now drop it and move on. - by Ace Coldiron
To attempt to insult another member and obvious professional who is in disagreement with you by asking for a definition of the verb "to like" and the noun "likeability", which are words familiar to first graders, is an insult, and an attempt to belittle that member.
Yes, I did ask for clarification. Call it a bad habit. As a sales professional I know that two different people can have drastically different meanings for the same word. The same way that two different people can have two different perceptions of what is being said. With that said, my question for clarification was not an attempt to insult or belittle Helisell.

Back to the original discussion... I personally believe it is a HUGE mistake to give salespeople the impression that "being liked" is essential to success in selling. Credibility - trust, respect? Sure. Of course, as I mentioned earlier "being disliked" is a huge problem but it is not one or the other because there is a middle or neutral ground. - by Vito
This thread has been closed by request. - by Jeff Blackwell
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