Rapport Building is one of the MOST IMPORTANT things you do as a B2B Sales person. Without the ability to gain rapport, you miss out on the things that really matter in the sales process. Think I’m kidding here? More sales have been lost because the sales person working an account had no credibility with the decision makers. Why? Because they had lousy people skills and did not think that rapport building was important!
One of the major reasons that rapport building is critical to your sales success is rapport building is the starting point for building trust. And, without Trust, there is no sales, no business, and no renewal business.
Buying decisions are made over 80% of the time based upon this concept of trust. Let me put it another way, if a customer or prospect does not have any trust in you – they will not buy from you. It really is that simple.
Are you good at building trust? I find a number of sales people have become quite arrogant and believe that it is all about the product and service. This leads to competitors enjoying the success of winning sales – at your expense if you are one of the arrogant ones!
There are many things you can do to gain rapport. Here is a short list of rapport building steps…
- Listening – Actually it is active listening to the customer or prospects point of view about things.
- Limit Assumptions – Since errant assumptions is the leading cause of poor judgment and bad decisions, limiting assumptions is important to gaining real rapport with others.
- Ask Questions – Asking more AND better questions will lead to increased rapport because the customer will find you more interesting! That is correct. The more the customer or prospect talks, the more they like you and feel you are a great conversationalist. And, the better questions you ask, the better information you will get from the people that count – the customer.
- Use Mirroring Techniques – Truthfully, this is one you must practice and be careful to use good judgment in its execution. Learning how to use posture, breathing patterns and word usage are all critical to allowing a customer or prospect to feel comfortable around you. Learn more about how this works and you will win more often.
- Use Style Flex – This technique will immediately allow for greater levels of understanding in the critical area of communication or effective communication. It seems there is a lot of communication going on in sales – it is sometimes lacking in effectiveness. (Our workshop on Flexible Selling is based upon having effective communication with customers and clients.) The key is learning about your style, recognizing your customer’s style and flexing during your meetings to gain an opportunity for objective discussion and effective communication.
- Pace – Closely related to mirroring, this technique recognizes the actual spoken pace of the customer and you match it. Always remember that the pace a person speaks is closely related to the pace they listen. Match their pace and they will hear more of your message – especially the important parts.
There are other keys to building rapport, yet, these are the major ones that you will need to master for greater results in sales. Learn these techniques and you will be a sales winner. It shows the customer ,client or prospect that you are a serious professional who values the relationship. It begins the building of trust for the customer – which is so vital to your ultimate success.
If you have any questions or concerns about rapport building, please contact me and let’s talk about how to improve your rapport building techniques and skills. Call me at 902-757-4434. May the trust building begin.
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