Buying On Emotion

Buying on EmotionTraditional wisdom says, “People buy on emotion and justify with fact”. But which emotions exactly?

Sales reps understand facts. They present them quantified (ROI), certified (ISO), and verified (references).

But facts are after the fact.

Customers have already bought on emotion by the time they’re looking at the facts. What do sales reps do to get customers to that point?

Do sales reps motivate customers? Is that where customers buy on emotion, because they’re motivated to:

  • Approach (going towards something they want more of)
  • Avoid (going away from something)
  • Attack (eliminating something they don’t want )

Customers may need to be motivated but sales reps can’t do “motivation”, reps can’t act on it. They can’t sit in a conference room and push customers towards something, or away from, or kill what customers want eliminated.

Motivation is the customer’s response. Their action to their emotions. It is what a customer does because of what they are feeling.

So that leaves sales reps trying to reach customers’ emotions
– which drive customers’ motivations
– which drive customers’ actions
– which result in customers buying sales reps’ offers.

Emotions that Motivate Customers to Buy

So, we’re back at the beginning: Which emotions motivate customers to buy?

The emotions we’re talking about fall into two groups:

#1) Emotions that motivate customers to buy from anyone
#2) Emotions that motivate customers to buy from you

#1) Emotions that motivate customers to buy from anyone

At first glance, these emotions may not seem helpful because who wants customers to buy from their competition? But knowing which emotions motivate customers to buy, gives reps the opportunity to act. (I’m also listing over-simplified actions reps can take to move customers towards those emotions.)

Lastly, these emotions aren’t all that pretty. As a matter of fact, they look more like manipulation than legitimate sales tactics. Here goes, this is what sales reps want customers to feel, so they will be motivated to buy.

Customers will buy if they feel:

* Frightened of inaction (reps can threaten or scare them to it)

* Courageous to make a decision rather than status quo (reps can encourage)

* Ashamed to hide away from change or improvement (reps can shame or tease)

* Empowered to contribute to their company’s success (reps can praise)

* Confident in their choice (reps can agree)

* Powerful to deal with challenges (reps can acknowledge)

* Capable of overcoming obstacles (reps can assure)

* Responsive to threats facing their business (reps can warn or alert)

* Amused at absurdity & silliness of life & work (reps can joke or laugh with them)

* Safe & in control (reps can reassure or comfort)

#2) Emotions that motivate customers to buy from you

Sales reps not only want customers to feel emotions that motivate buying, but emotions that motivate customers to buy from them in particular.

These are the golden emotions, the ones that count – but they’re a lot more complex to generate, especially in a short period of time.

Customers will buy from you if they:

* Trust you – to steer them in the right direction for their benefits before yours

* Like you – enough to give you their time, and enjoy being with you during and after the sale

* Rely on you – to do what you’ve promised and make them look good

* Respect you – for your knowledge of how to deliver value for them

* Love you  – for who you are in relationship to who they are

One Final Question

After identifying which emotions motivate customers to buy, you’ve been asking yourself: “How do sales reps get customers to feel these emotions?”

What’s your answer?

Please share how you do that by posting a comment up here.

Questions or Ideas?

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