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18 2011

Business Rapport is Not Social

Syndicated from: Fearless Selling Blog ~ Increase Your Sales

I can honestly say that no topic has generated more feedback, emails and comments than my recent posts about establishing rapport. Several people vehemently disagreed with me and emailed their comments, often without reading the article(s). They said that building rapport with people and developing relationships were factors that were instrumental in helping them achieve sales success. I don’t disagree with them. Establishing rapport is still important. Unfortunately, many people still believe that rapport consists of making social chit-chat, discussing areas of commonality, or talking about a photo or some other item of interest in a prospect’s office. But… The approach to establishing rapport has changed. Today, business rapport consists of demonstrating that you have done your homework, researched the company you’re calling on, presenting the most appropriate solution, and focusing on business issues rather than personal ones. When you execute these concepts, you don’t need to discuss non-sales-related topics. Some of the people who disagreed with me stated that they sell primarily to consumers, not B2B. I contend that the same approach is still effective. You can still develop a high level of rapport with people but you should do it AFTER the initial sales conversation is done. Even though I am a social person, I don’t like it when a salesperson tries to develop rapport with me until I know they can solve my problem. Once that is achieved, I am much more open and willing to talk about things that are more personal. That’s because they have earned my trust. Here’s a suggestion… For one month, use a more direct approach by saying something like, “I know your time is valuable so let me ask you a couple of questions…” Then get to the point of your meeting, your sales call, or your presentation and take care of business. AFTER you’re finished, talk about personal things (assuming the other person has time) and see how people respond. I’m willing to bet that you won’t notice a difference in your results AND you will have saved time AND differentiated yourself from the other sales people your customers and prospects deal with. Looking for a dynamic speaker for an upcoming conference? Let’s have a quick chat about your goals & objectives to determine if I can help: 905-633-7750 Tweet This

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