3 Sales Techniques For Everyday Influence

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3 Sales Techniques For Everyday InfluenceRecently, I was reading The Cheat Code to Life in Wired Magazine’s July 2013 issue and came across three sales techniques that they pose as viable solutions to everyday influence. I thought they were worth posting because their value extends far beyond manipulating people for personal gain. I believe that we can all learn something about human interaction and persuasion by exposure to techniques like this. In addition, it is important to understand these triggers to protect ourselves from manipulation through them. Enjoy!

You and a friend are going to a party. You want her to drive; she says she’s exhausted. How do you get her to take the wheel? Simple. Just swipe a few tricks from that Best Buy salesman who got you to purchase a 75-inch flatscreen—and left you thinking it was your idea all along. These techniques, culled from sales gurus who would prefer that you buy their book or six-DVD set, will have your pals willingly doing your bidding in no time. —SARA BRESELOR

1. Solution Selling

HOW SALESPEOPLE USE IT ON YOU: They’ll frame the product as something that solves a problem. Every time a salesperson asks for background info—Is this cabinet part of a larger remodel?—they’re looking for a problem their product can solve. HOW YOU’LL USE IT ON YOUR FRIEND: “I know you’re tired, but if you drive, you’re in charge, and we can leave as early as you want.”

2. Provocation-Based Selling

HOW SALESPEOPLE USE IT ON YOU: They’ll target your vague underlying angst. You bring your car in to get the brakes checked and the mechanic offers to detail the interior to get rid of “that moldy smell.” HOW YOU’LL USE IT ON YOUR FRIEND: “You do look exhausted, and those cocktails aren’t going to improve the bags under your eyes. Are you sure you don’t want to drive so you don’t end up overdoing it like last weekend?”

3. Strip-Lining

HOW SALESPEOPLE USE IT ON YOU: They’ll agree with you in a way that makes you feel insecure about your decision. You tell a salesperson you can’t afford that outrageously fancy digital camera, and instead of pushing it, he says, “Yeah, you probably don’t want something this extravagant. This is a camera for someone who wants professional quality. You can probably get by with a point-and-shoot.” HOW YOU’LL USE IT ON YOUR FRIEND: “You’re right. You’ve been strung out lately. I’ll drive so you can get as crazy as you want.”

While I’m not a huge fan of the specific examples presented, the value is present none the less. So, next time you are looking for a little extra oomph behind that pitch, remember these three techniques.

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