One of my clients who works with real estate agents as referral partners went to a few open houses recently as a prospecting activity. He was in the market for a new home and figured he might as well kill two birds with one stone.
He went to several open houses and had actual conversations with only four of the real estate agents, and what he discovered was very surprising to him.
Not a single one of those real estate agents asked him what he did for a living. They didn't ask him what he was looking for or even if the house was within his budget.
They just went through the features and benefits of the house, followed him around, and made light small talk. My client even baited them a bit—he mentioned that he worked in the area, just up the street—and none of the real estate agents asked any questions to get to know him any better.
All they did was give him the same spiel they give to everyone. And what was the result? My client won't be purchasing a home from any of those real estate agents, and he won't be developing any referral partner relationships with them, either.
They didn't make an emotional connection with him. And they won't be doing business with him, either.
When you sell something that's a very personal item, or an expensive one, you need to be able to make an emotional connection with your prospects. If you're selling gum or water bottles, sure—it doesn't matter if your customers know you or like you.
But whenever you sell something that's complex, expensive, or personal, that emotional connection becomes extremely important. People do business with people they know, like, and trust. And if prospects don't feel any of that toward you, they won't be purchasing from you.
What if you don't sell something that has an immediate emotional draw? Purchasing a home usually involves some pretty powerful emotions. What if you sell B2B, though, or sell something less obviously emotional?
You'll need to look for the emotional appeal of what you sell, in that case. You can't rely on your prospects to find it for you. But let's say you're selling insurance. Nobody buys insurance because they want insurance. They buy insurance because they care about what that insurance is protecting.
Or maybe you sell B2B. How does what you sell help someone do their job better, grow their business, provide for their family, or impress their boss? Focus on the positive results that you can provide for your prospect.
You have to make it about them when you're selling. Don't drone on about your features and benefits to every prospect.
Find out what pain your prospect is dealing with and how you can resolve it. That's how you build the emotional connection that makes people want to do business with you.