Are you working hard without seeing results? Constantly spinning your wheels on how to better your selling process and increase your bottom line? If you’re putting in the work but aren’t getting a steady stream of referrals or generating sales, it could come down to trust.
When people get to know you and get to like you, people start to trust you. What it boils down to is that the solid base of a strong prospect or customer interaction is a real relationship. And relationship building starts with building rapport. Not only is building rapport crucial in forming relationships, but it also works to enhance them. If a prospect is having a difficult time making a decision, building rapport and gaining trust can decrease any uncertainty.
Building rapport is where it’s at. It’s the cat’s meow. It’s what the cool kids are doing.
Consider taking a fresh look at how you connect with your clients by stepping up your rapport game.
Find common ground
Finding common interests is something we do almost every day without even realizing it. We look for those things we have in common like people we know, where we live, the age of our kids or our favorite restaurant. It helps us break down that invisible wall to establish an instant friendliness vibe. Finding common ground can be as simple as asking open ended questions like, “What did you do over the weekend?” Inviting a detailed answer can spur on further conversation.
Match their energy & body language
Actions speak louder than words. Have you ever noticed how friends and family adopt each other’s behaviors? They tend to talk to one another at a similar speed and volume while using similar facial expressions, posture and gestures. The same goes for your prospects and customers. In fact 70% of our communication is perceived nonverbally and can have a much greater impact than saying a single word.
Also look out for their communication style. Pay close attention to how your customer prefers to communicate and get in step. Do they like to engage in small talk or get right down to business? What do they find interesting or funny? Do your best to match your customer’s body language and energy to minimize perceived sales pressure and—you guessed it!—build rapport.
Don’t be “one of those” people
Don’t be contrived---make it a point to always make a sincere connection. When it comes to those initial meet-and-greets, and with any interaction, tread lightly. Don’t be too “salesy” and remember to see each prospect as an individual with individual needs. Pushing the sale like a used-car salesman won’t get you very far. Have real and relaxed conversations so they see you as a human and less like a sales robot. Connect, engage and have a meaningful “human” conversation.
Don’t dominate the conversation
One of the quickest ways to obliterate building rapport is to dominate every conversation. Instead, amp up your active listening skills. Take notes, listen attentively, engage and avoid the temptation to interrupt. Use these 6 phrases to demonstrate active listening from HubSpot.
Once you’ve established building rapport and trust with your prospect, the hard part is behind you. It doesn’t matter how knowledgeable you are or if you’ve mastered 38 closing techniques: if you don’t earn their trust and confidence you won’t make the sale. Period.