Home > Approach > Hypnosis in sales?

Hypnosis in sales?

In a recent newsletter post on this board there was an essay on the use of hypnotic suggestion for persuasion.

My question is A) Do you feel employing hypnotic suggestion is ethical in selling?, B) Do you feel the buyer will feel good about his/her desison long term if they were sold in this manner and C) Would you, as a professional salesperson feel good about yourself and your sales if you personally employed this method of selling?

Just curious.

The idea of using hypnotic suggestion in the sales process *really* rubbed me the wrong way, maybe it's just me. I don't know alot about hypnotic suggestion but I can't imagine it sticks long-term, and I would think that a buyer may have misgivings conciously or subconciouly about thier purchase that would affect future business.

I also feel that even if I was skilled at this - employing it on purpose in selling efforts just doesn't seem right personally.

Anyone feel different? - by TommyMac5
A) Do you feel employing hypnotic suggestion is ethical in selling?
I don't view it as unethical.

B) Do you feel the buyer will feel good about his/her desison long term if they were sold in this manner?
I don't think it will make a difference.

C)Would you, as a professional salesperson feel good about yourself and your sales if you personally employed this method of selling?
Yes. - by AZBroker
I also feel that even if I was skilled at this - employing it on purpose in selling efforts just doesn't seem right personally.
When you think of this as just highly structured communication how does that change things? - by Milton
TommyMac5

Just as a point of discussion I wonder if any contract signed while under any form of hypnosis or hypnotic suggestion might be voidable.

If someone is under the influence of alchohol or drugs there are court cases confirming the issue of voiding the contract.

Do I see hypnosis as ethical? No.
Buyer feel good about the decision? No. I think they would feel duped, so, no.
Would I feel good about using this method? See answer #1.

Interesting post. - by Masteri5
Just as a point of discussion I wonder if any contract signed while under any form of hypnosis or hypnotic suggestion might be voidable.

If someone is under the influence of alchohol or drugs there are court cases confirming the issue of voiding the contract.
Where did you learn to view hypnosis in this way? - by Milton
When you think of this as just highly structured communication how does that change things?
I guess it's a question of intent. Did you go into the sales meeting with the intent of making a sale by using hypnotic suggestion as the tool. I think that gives you an unfair, and in my own mind, unethical advantage over your client. - by TommyMac5
I guess it's a question of intent. Did you go into the sales meeting with the intent of making a sale by using hypnotic suggestion as the tool. I think that gives you an unfair, and in my own mind, unethical advantage over your client.
I agree with your comment about "Intent". What is it about hypnosis or hypnotic suggestion that you feel gives you an unethical advantage over your client? Are you thinking that hypnosis is something that is done against the other person's will? - by Milton
Milton

I hope you did not think I was implying that hypnosis has any connection to drugs or alcohol.

My point is that courts have made voidable contracts negotiated while the purchaser is under the influence of those. I am just wondering if someone who later finds out they were under the influence of hypnosis or hypnotic suggestion could make the same argument. - by Masteri5
The keyword here is "finds out they were under the influence ". Milton, if I understand you correctly, you don't feel that Hypnotic suggestion is overly manipulative, whereas I do. maybe thats the gap that needs to be bridged.

I do agree with AZ on this too, I would think purposly using this type of pursuation could jepordize a deal potentially. - by TommyMac5
I am just wondering if someone who later finds out they were under the influence of hypnosis or hypnotic suggestion could make the same argument.
What do you think their argument would be? - by Milton
Milton, if I understand you correctly, you don't feel that Hypnotic suggestion is overly manipulative, whereas I do.
What is it about hypnotic suggestion that you find overly manipulative? - by Milton
Milton
[What do you think their argument would be?]

I am not an attorney but perhaps one reads these forums and can offer an answer.
I would think something along the line of "diminished capacity" or "duress" for starters. - by Masteri5
The idea of using hypnotic suggestion in the sales process *really* rubbed me the wrong way, maybe it's just me. I don't know alot about hypnotic suggestion but I can't imagine it sticks long-term, and I would think that a buyer may have misgivings conciously or subconciouly about thier purchase that would affect future business.

I also feel that even if I was skilled at this - employing it on purpose in selling efforts just doesn't seem right personally.
Have you ever asked a client to "remember" something from their past? Have you ever asked a client to "imagine" himself in the future enjoying the benefits of using your product?

If you did... do you consider that as overly manipulative? Do you feel that you had an unfair and unethical advantage over your client? - by SalesGuy
Have you ever asked a client to "remember" something from their past? Have you ever asked a client to "imagine" himself in the future enjoying the benefits of using your product?
You've got the idea. When the client turns their attention inward to "remember" or "imagine" that is hypnosis. - by Milton
First, even if I could do this, I don't think I'd want to employ such a method.

However, here's a new wrinkle in the discussion. A good friend of mine is a psychiatrist by trade. As part of his professional development, he did learn hypnosis and has found it to be an interesting tool, and uses it only ethically.

Here's the thing in terms of this discussion... He said it is completely impossible to use hypnosis to make someone do something they wouldn't normally be able to do. So in other words, he couldn't hypnotize me to rob a bank, because my values system wouldn't allow me to do it under normal circumstances, so therefore I could NOT be hypnotized to do such a thing.

SO.... in the context of this thread, if you WERE to use hypnosis to, say close a deal... then you know that you haven't forced your buyer into doing something they wouldn't normally do anyway.

Does this make it ethical? Heck if I know. In fact, I have to say that it may simply prove that you've used hypnosis to make someone make A purchase... does that mean that person would not have normally made THAT purpose.... or ANY purpose?

I've successfully managed to confuse myself... thanks! - by Coda1108
My understanding is that people go in and out of 'trance' all day long without anybody's assistance. So if you tell a story and the person goes into trance what is unethical about that? Sales trainers have been telling us to use stories for years. - by Jolly Roger
I think this brings up the same points I raised in one of the other threads on the same or similar topic. 'Hypnosis' as described in this practise seems to have little or nothing to do with what most lay people, psychologists or psychiatrists consider hypnosis to be. It seem more like an analogy to hypnosis. But perhaps just calling it visualisation and suggestion wouldn't 'sell' the approach as effectively.... It might be an idea to give a little background before discussing specific techniques that are embedded in an alternative practise like NLP. Then the meaning of terms is established and less like to confuse. IMHO what you use hypnosis to mean here is by no means what most people here would understand it to mean. - by theglyphon
As A sales professional and a CHT. I would have to say that the views of hypnosis that I have read here are from watching too much stage magic.

Hypnosis, is no more than getting in a deeper sense of rapport with your client. Getting connected on a level that is congruent with what the client wants.

If you are thinking of hypnosis as a form of manipulation than you are accurate in your statements of it being unethical.

And if a person has learned hypnosis to try to sell. I got to say that is the worst time to try to do hypnosis. And it would make selling harder. Not easier.

Not to mention people will not stay under hypnosis for long periods of time outside of doing something that they congruently believe is right for them. And when they come out if you have manipulated them they will not have anything to do with you again.

So Hypnosis to manipulate is harder to sell with and has long term negative repercussions.

Hypnosis to help the buyer feel more comfortable with what they want to do already easy to sell and a good tool to use.

Just like hard closing using it to manipulate - harder to sell with long term negative repercussions.

But closing to help the buyer to come to the decision to buy something that they already want- easy to sell and a good tool to use.

Just like need analysis that is used to manipulate - " "

Needs analysis that is used to help the client buy something that they want or need - " "

Just like so many other aspects of the sale. If you use it to manipulate it makes it harder and kills the repeat biz. - by R Leisure
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.