Some people are easy to trust. Have you ever noticed that?
Upon first meeting them, you just feel they are a trustworthy, upstanding person. And they may prove you wrong later, but initially you feel they are someone you can trust, divulge information to, and even take their advice.
As a salesperson, if you appear trustworthy, and prove to be over the long haul, you will sell more than those who aren’t. There’s no way to argue that.
While a lot of people possess the intangible qualities that lower people’s walls, they don’t come easy to everyone. If you find yourself struggling to connect with people you first meet, try these 3 tactics:
1. Make solid eye contact
Matthew 6:22-23 says, “The light of the body is the eye.” The Bible also says, “the eyes are the window of the soul.”
The quickest, surest way to build a connection with anyone is to first connect with the eyes. Hold eye contact a little longer than you would normally. But not so long that things get weird.
2. Extend a firm handshake
There’s nothing that shows a greater sign of weakness, and lack of social awareness, than a wimpy, limp-noodle, unconfident handshake.
When you meet someone, reach out, take the lead, make sure you shake his or her hand all the way back into the web of the thumb, and squeeze slightly harder than they do. Do that every time, and you’ll never have a bad handshake.
3. Repeat their name back to them
In his famous book How to Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie says the most important word to anyone is his or her name. So, when you first meet someone and learn their name, repeat it back to them.
First, this shows them you respect the importance of them, and their name. Also, it will help you remember it.
Nothing turns people off more than having a great first interaction with someone new, only to have them ask prior to departure, “What was your name again?” Bad form. Don’t be one of those people.
4. Speak slightly louder than you need to
It’s a proven fact that people who speak louder are perceived as more confident, more credible, and more trustworthy. Speaking slightly louder than you need to displays a high level of confidence.
When people are soft spoken and don’t project their voice very well, it’s a sign of weakness. People don’t necessarily think you have something to hide. They just won’t take you as seriously, and you won’t make a strong enough impression.
On a final note, these tactics can help you establish trust quickly, but they won’t help you keep trust. If your end goal isn’t truly to help the people you serve, eventually they will sniff you out, kick you out, and never let you back in.
If you aren’t a trustworthy person, and you don’t tell the absolute truth 100% of the time, you are giving yourself, your family, and your company, a bad name. Your goal should be to build trust quickly, because you are a trustworthy, honest, hard-working person, and because you are someone people should work with, for the long term.
That can be Bonus Tip #5: Always tell the truth.
The path to sales success is always easier when you start on the right foot. By following these steps, you can build trust with your prospects quickly and maintain it forever.
What are your best strategies for building trust with prospects?
Bret Barrie was a Hall-of-Fame and Presidents’ Club-winning sales rep and is a top-producing sales leader in the medical device industry. He is also the author of The Selling Edge: How to Reach the Top in any Sales Industry. A baseball enthusiast and fitness junkie, he is happily married with three children and lives in the greater Sacramento area. For more information, visit bretbarrie.com.