📄 How to not imprison your buyers
There’s a reason why imprisonment is the punishment of choice across the world.
Not because it’s necessarily effective, but because as punishments go, it does one of the worst things you can do to someone:
To remove a person’s autonomy.
For someone to no longer be a free agent, to not control their own decisions, is horrible.
And in selling your work, removing the other's autonomy is pretty much the worst possible thing you could do.
Right? Who in their right minds would ever want to tell a buyer what they should do?
I'll bet you agree, and yet:
It’s staggering to see how many people (unwittingly) end up removing the buyer’s autonomy.
Now you probably think “Yeah, but that’s not me”.
Are you sure though?
When you try to persuade someone…
When you try to convince someone by making a powerful argument…
When you try to overcome someone’s objections, fears, or doubts… and you continue to make your case…
That’s when you are in fact, in a subtle way or not, removing a buyer’s autonomy. The more you argue your point, the more you're signalling "My being right is supposed to be the rule here, if only you would see that".
Which makes you the authority and they lose autonomy. And because that’s the worst thing you can do to a human being, it’s not very likely to result in a sale - and if it does, chances are you’ll end up dealing with buyer’s remorse or other problems.
It’s never a good idea to push someone into a sale (or, indeed, a point of view).
What is a good idea though, is to invite someone in.
Invite them to consider a viewpoint.
Invite them to consider a purchase.
Invite them to ask you questions, or even better:
Invite them to tell you what concerns they have.
Inviting people to go along with you has the opposite effect of pushing people:
Instead of them putting up barriers, they’ll lower their guard and consider what you’re telling them, they'll tell you what they want and what their challenges are.
And if at some point they accept the invitation to buy, they do so under full control and autonomy, and you bet that’s a way to buy that people love.
Any time that something feels like an uphill battle with people, you're probably trying to push your agenda - so stop that, and instead start inviting.
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