Building Trust with Skeptical Prospects
Adapted from blog a written by Joe D'Ambra
The skeptical person is one who does not believe a thing that any salesperson says, or anyone else for that matter. Aside from the obvious, he is also difficult because he does not say much or disclose much. Typically, this attitude comes from a combination of experiences and disappointments which have brought him to this state. It is you who must understand these traits and find a way to build trust.
Start off by connecting with him on small, noncontroversial issues--anything from the weather to minor points about your product or service. Then, move from those minor points and expand the areas of agreement. This takes a bit more time, and can be most effectively done by asking questions. Ask questions that are open-ended, and give the prospect an opportunity to express the uniqueness of their life and situation.
As you move into the phase of matching your product or service to the individual's unique needs, do not exaggerate. Err on the side of understating the effectiveness of your service - be careful not to overstate it. Understated points show respect for a person's skepticism. Once a person starts to feel understood, trust can germinate.
Lastly, help the person emotionally engage to the idea of using your services by connecting with other satisfied clients who are like him/her. This is commonly done through testimonials and stories, but you can also use referrals ("How about giving these previous clients a call and learning about their experiences…"). If he/she happens to already know one of the referral sources, that's all the better.
Most people who are skeptical have a right to be, whether they are correct in that skepticism or not. It is their nature. What is important is that you recognize it and deal with it properly.
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