|Vice President—Content/Editorial Director, Ruthanne Terrero|
I recently visited the Verizon store on Madison Avenue in midtown Manhattan. I was deciding between a new iPhone 5 and the Samsung Galaxy. The style of one of the salesmen there blew me away. Here are some of the things he did. It was all very “Sales 101” technique, but in this case, it worked.
1. He approached me in the showroom, even though I’d already spoken to another sales rep about the iPhone 5. When I asked her about the Samsung Galaxy, she’d pointed me to it, leaving me to walk solo into his realm.
2. When he began speaking he asked for my forgiveness if I felt he were delivering a salesman’s pitch, but he just wanted me to know the pure facts of the phone’s benefits.
3. He kept likening himself to me. “I used to be a writer myself," he said, "So I liked having a phone with a physical keyboard. But I got used to not having one, and here’s why it’s better not to have a virtual keyboard.” Then he did it again. “You wear glasses like me so you’ll like a larger screen.”
4. He kept touching my arm. A bit way too much for my taste, but it was clearly one of the things he does to make clients feel he is relating to them. I give him a B+ for trying in that department.
5. He threw in a bit of personal information about himself. He was just returning to work from back surgery. He was feeling much better, though still had some slight pain, but was happy to be back in the game. I went briefly into his world, felt sympathy for him, but then he returned me promptly to the reality of the phone and its benefits.
6. What I am glad he didn’t do? He didn’t ask my name and keep dropping it into the conversation repeatedly. That sales technique should be removed from all Sales 101 manuals. Thank you.
7. At the end of it all, when he gave me his card he acted as if it were a very special thing he was doing, as if he doesn’t give his card to everyone. “When you’re ready, call me,” he said. He may have even winked at me. I took the card and tucked it into a safe place inside my purse.
8. As I left, he artfully approached another store customer. I realized then that he was treating the showroom as his own domain, of which he was the host. He wanted to know the needs and desires of everyone who had walked through his threshold. Or so he would have us believe, and that was good enough for me.
9. When I left, I was over the moon about having decided which new phone to get. The huge weight of deciding between the Samsung and the iPhone had been lifted from my shoulders by this knowledgeable sales person. I was all but singing as I made my way up Madison Avenue.
10. That’s when I realized the top attribute a good sales person should have. They should make you feel exhilarated about what you’ve decided to purchase even before you’ve gotten your hands on the item. You should also feel as if there is no doubt in the world that you’ve made the correct decision. No angst, no second thoughts.