Today I want to cover four key non-verbal techniques to improve your rapport building with both customers and potential customers.
You know that I’m a big supporter of gaining rapport with people to build trust and credibility. Plus, you know I’m also a bigger believer in the use of the right combination of words to ensure proper meaning relative to your audience.
That being said, there are also key or critical skills of the non-verbal type you will need to know and master. While there are possibly hundreds of non-verbal clues and techniques, I want to focus on four key techniques for you to begin using today.
There four key non-verbal techniques include…
I’m not talking about the childhood game of mimicking another person – that would be a disaster. Here I’m talking about observing your contacts movements and posture. After reflecting upon their movements and posture, begin to reflect a similar posture and match their movements in speed and positioning, Your goals is to show agreement and receptivity using non-verbal techniques with your contact.
- Calibrating State
This is referring to the contacts personal State. Is this person interested in what you are saying – they can express this without saying a word. How? By doing things like looking away or down at papers, or clashing their hands in front of you – these are negative signs of disinterest. Use your verbal skills especially questioning skills to re-engage the contact. Positive clues are things like sitting forward and actively listening, nodding their head regarding important comments, and breathing normally during the entire meeting. Eye contact is the main issue here so pay close attention to the contact’s eyes and where are they looking. You goal is to have them making genuine eye contact throughout the meeting.
- Crossover Mirroring
If you have an issue with mirroring, then use crossover mirroring techniques. These are used to match the general gestures made by the contact without doing the exact same thing. One of the easiest examples is if the contact crossing their arms, then you cross your legs. Again, the key here is to avoid an identical gesture, yet, match with a similar gesture. This shows you are receptive to their ideas and builds the level of trust between you.
- Matching Voice Patterns
Truthfully, this is more of an advanced technique and it will take practice to master. Yet, I have had sales people tell me after learning this technique that they practiced with their spouse or family member. To their amazement – it worked better than they thought it would – and it will work for you too. Here we are talking about things happening when you are talking, yet it is not about the words you are using. It involves modifying your normal volume, pitch and speed of delivery to match the speech patterns of the contact. When you modify these techniques, you will find more rapport with the contact and surprise – a willingness to share more important information with you. However, this is something you must practice to get it right. Start today with a friend or someone in your family (use someone that has been difficult to talk with in the past to measure real improvement.)
There you have the big four non-verbal techniques. Pick one and use it today until you feel very comfortable using it. Then pick another one and do the same thing until you have mastered all four non-verbal techniques.
By then, I will have shared a few more techniques for you to use. Or, you can contact me using the contact form page on this website and I will be happy to share a list of books or articles for you to learn more advanced techniques.