Loyalty Leader Quick Tips

How Do You and Your Customers Behave?

August 30, 2016

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Have you ever left a store vowing never to return? If you answered, “yes,” did you leave because of the way you were treated? Most customers stop doing business with a company because one employee treated them poorly.

Have you ever met a salesperson you did not like? If you answered, “yes,” did you buy from that salesperson? Most customers have met a salesperson they didn’t like and chose not to buy from that salesperson unless it was a product or service they could not get anywhere else.

Customers and sales are lost every day because of a lack of understanding of the customer’s behavioral style. People tend to conduct business with people they like. But style differences often create barriers that can prevent you from building positive relationships with your customers.

My husband and I have very different behavioral styles. When I decide to buy a car, I wait until I can afford a brand-new model. I select the style and color first and I only test-drive the vehicle once. I need to be excited about the vehicle. If I like the way it drives and I think I’ll look good in it, the decision is all but made. Once I’ve responded on an emotional level, it’s unlikely that I’ll shop around. I prefer working with a friendly, outgoing salesperson who likes to chat. Finally, if the car’s in my price range and has a decent safety record, I’ll probably make the purchase.

My husband only buys used cars that get great mileage. He reviews Consumer Reports to check out safety reports and equipment ratings. He will shop for months and test-drive several vehicles before he makes a purchase. He is turned off by pushy salespeople and would rather be left alone when he’s shopping.

Because your customers have different behavioral styles, they are going to like different things.

Some customers want:

  • you to get to the point fast and not waste their time.
  • you to schmooze and chat with them for a long time.
  • to buy products with cutting-edge technology.
  • considerable time to think before making their buying decision.
  • risk-free products with a proven track record.
  • to buy based on an emotional response such as excitement.
  • to feel like you’re their best friend.
  • reassurance and a feeling of security.

Research conducted by Target Training International, Ltd. has proven that:

  • People tend to buy from employees who have behavioral styles similar to their own.
  •  Salespeople are more likely to sell to customers who have a behavioral style similar to their own.
  • Employees who are aware of their own behavioral style and learn to “blend” with their customer’s style are able to increase sales and customer satisfaction.

We all have certain behaviors that make us unique. Learn your own behavioral style to help you understand how other people perceive you. There are behavioral style analysis tools that have been around for many years to help you analyze your style. These tools are used extensively by businesses in sales training workshops and they’re very accurate. The style analysis assessment tool that I prefer uses a system called DISC® .

According to the DISC® system, developed by Target Training International, Ltd., you can determine your customers’ behavioral styles by looking at the characteristics of each of the four styles:

  1. High D individuals are fast-paced, assertive and strategic thinkers. Their motto is “I want it done now and I want it done right.” Other styles perceive them as being too demanding and impatient. Your “high D” customers make buying decisions based on status, cutting edge technology and bottom-line results.
  2. High I individuals are relationship-oriented. They are outgoing, love to chat and may even give you a hug when they greet you. They’re optimistic, enthusiastic and adapt quickly to change. Other styles perceive them as poor listeners and unreliable because they don’t pay attention to details. Your “high I” customers make buying decisions based on emotion, personal image and testimonials.
  3. High S  individuals are soft-spoken and good listeners. They are organized, dependable and loyal. Others perceive them as weak because they will say “yes” when they mean “no.” These folks do not like to make waves. Your “high S” customers make buying decisions based on trust, stability, reliability and guarantees.
  4. High C individuals are analytical and detail-oriented, priding themselves on accuracy. They tend to be quiet and hold their emotions inside. Because of this other styles often perceive these individuals as being cold, aloof or too picky. Your “high C” customers make buying decisions based on research, facts and cost-effectiveness.

Recognizing and understanding the behavioral styles of your prospects and customers will help you to do a better job of meeting their individual needs. Honoring behavioral style differences will help you develop solid relationships with your customers, resulting in higher retention and sales. These solid relationships will set you apart from your competitors and serve as magnets for attracting new business.

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