Social Selling Tips of the Week: The Psychology Behind Social Selling

Get into your prospects’ heads to understand exactly how to close the deal.

July 22, 2016

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At its heart, social selling is about people. Social sellers connect with prospects, clients, and contacts by sharing meaningful insights and personalized solutions. But how well do you actually know your audience—or what really drives them?

The power of social selling isn’t just that it creates more business opportunities—although that’s true. No, the real power of social selling is its ability to reach beyond the cold call and sales pitch to reach individuals on a personal level. And today’s top performers know exactly how to connect with people.

This week’s top social selling tips are about reimagining and reconnecting with the people behind the prospects. Let’s dive in.

Starting a Revolution Inside Your Head: The New Reality of Neuro-Sales

This week’s first post addresses the psychology of risk aversion and its vital role in the sales process. Essentially, it’s about understanding human triggers to make better first impressions and build immediate and long-lasting rapport.

In a Pulse article, inspirational speaker and coach Tim Dingle points to recent neurological research that argues that we’re all programmed with an Inherent Threat Detector (ITD). The ITD’s sole purpose is to assess potential threats—i.e., everyone we meet. Successful salespeople know how to identify and disarm this roadblock on the way to closing a deal—but Dingle makes the case that this usually only happens through “intuition” or “trial and error.” He suggests a more scientific approach.

Quoting neuroscientist Antonio Damasio’s statement that, We are not thinking machines that feel; we are feeling machines that think,” Dingle argues that successful social selling hinges on one simple guiding sales principle: people buy from people they know, like and trust. Understand how to get by people’s ITD and you’re on your way to closing the deal.

How Sales Reps Can Qualify Prospects Like Doctors

Our second article this week takes this thought a little further and actually asks salespeople to diagnose prospects just like a doctor interviews patients. It’s an enlightening exercise. Ryan Neu, Director of Sales at Hubspot points out that, “Doctors have aced the ability to qualify and disqualify with slim margin of error, and we all have a lot to learn from them.”

Neu attributes doctors’ diagnostic abilities to a combination of open-ended questions, inherent authority, prescribing next steps, and even admitting when they don’t know the answer—then shows how sales reps can benefit with the same approach.

What if Sigmund Freud Was Your Sales Manager?

This week’s final post challenges sales associates to imagine what Sigmund Freud would ask if he was their manager. Steve W. Martin (not that Steve Martin), argues that Freud would only have one simple question for everyone on his sales team: “Why are you in sales?”

It’s a fascinating look at the subconscious desires that drive today’s modern salesperson. How would you answer?

As we said, social selling is all about people. Before your next social action, take a minute and investigate not only what drives your clients, but what drives you. The answers may be all you need to succeed.

For more insights and exploration about successful social selling techniques subscribe to the LinkedIn Sales Solution blog.