Guest Post By: Jay Jones
So you have the perfect sales script, you know it really well and you are still struggling in your sales process. Have you ever stopped and taken the time to pay attention to how you are saying what you are saying? This seems to be the elephant in the room with many salespeople. Quite honestly, after years of coaching many salespeople, I have found that this is one of the least developed skills in a large number of people across all industries. People often fail to realize the power of their non-verbal communications.
Albert Mehrabian is well known as one of the leading pioneers in the understanding of communication. Mehrabian’s research showed the following:
7% of communication is in the words that are spoken
38% of communication is in the way that the words are said (tone, volume, timing, etc.)
55% of communication is in the facial expressions and body language (which often changes the tone, volume, etc.)
It is important to note that Mehrabian’s findings specifically applies to the communication of feelings and attitudes. So the questions that I have for you are: What is your attitude and your feelings that are being projected onto the prospect when you are in the sales process? Do you have a strong conviction about the value that you bring? Are you confident in who you are and your ability to deliver an amazing product or service? Are you excited about your product and services? Are you selling with a servant’s heart or can your prospect smell your commission breathe through the phone?
It is often important for sales people to do a gut check to determine where they stand internally. Sales is a transference of emotion. If our beliefs are creating emotions that are not in alignment with what we are saying, the prospect will know. People buy from people that they like and trust. If you were on the receiving end of your sales communication, would you like and trust you?
Here are a few suggestions that can improve your non-verbal communication:
1. Audio record or video record yourself prospecting over the phone or giving your sales presentation. Often we can watch and listen to ourselves and immediately hear or see the areas in which we need to improve the way we sound or look when selling.
2. Hang up a mirror for phone prospecting. This is an old technique, but still a really good one. When watching our own facial expressions while on the phone, we often start to smile and project our voice better.
3. Role play with someone that will give you “honest” feedback about how you sound and look when selling.
4. Work on your self-talk. You need to work diligently every day on what you believe about yourself, your company and your product and services. If you don’t have conviction, enthusiasm and confidence in what you are selling, how can you expect your prospect to be confident and enthusiastic to buy.
5. Do vocal exercises. Even though you may not plan on trying out for American Idol, it will be helpful to have a pleasant tone and quality about your voice, especially when phone prospecting.
6. Either own your accent or work to minimize it. If you are someone that has a thick accent, you must learn to articulate your words clearly. Especially on the phone, people get frustrated often times when they cannot understand what you are saying.
7. Get clear on the self-image that you are trying to project. If you want to come across as a dynamic salesperson, then work to project that self-image though the way you sound and look while on the phone and in person.
Jay Jones is an expert in lead generation and business development. He has worked extensively in the mortgage, real estate, insurance, telecommunications, healthcare and financial services industries. Jay is a dynamic speaker and regularly speaks for company and industry events.