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Four Tips to Selling with Confidence

Written by: Frank Ferrara, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

 

Imagine having the sort of confidence that would allow you to sell to anyone.

Before we begin to look at these four tips, let’s be clear about this - that this information isn’t for everyone. This information is only for those who want to grow personally and professionally as their first order of priority.

See, to be effective in selling, you must be able to influence people. And to influence people, you must first be able to control yourself and your behavior at any given point in time. This is why personal and professional development MUST be at the top of your list.


So Who Are These Tips For?

  1. You love what you do and have been doing it for a long time.

  2. You want to get even better at delivering value to new & existing clients.

  3. You want more opportunities, and you want to win more of them.

  4. You want to share your message with the world for greater impact.

  5. So if we all agree and can identify with these points, what else can we do?

Confidence Is An Emotion


Let’s start with an understanding of what confidence is. Confidence is a feeling, an emotion, and it starts in our mind and transcends through our body as language. This is great because we can use our bodies and minds to create and control our confidence levels.

Why Should We Control This Emotion?

Confidence is contagious. If I project confidence in how I communicate, I will pass that same feeling onto my audience. Have you ever watched a nervous speaker and felt the same level of nervousness or awkwardness yourself? Or conversely, have you listened to a brilliant speech and come to life from the experience?


Or if I told you right now that these four tips would undoubtedly boost your confidence, would you feel a shift in your confidence?

The feelings that are created in these moments are important to create certainty. Certainty is important because it is an essential human need. When you are certain and create certainty in your prospect, you will significantly increase the probability of buying. Conversely, if you do not create certainty, then your prospects will be confused. Confused prospects will not buy.

Not only is confidence contagious, but it will also empower you to get in front of as many prospects as possible. If you don't already know this, sales is a numbers game. The best performers in business are the ones that confidently communicate to the biggest audiences.

The final point to make about the importance of confidence is that it demonstrates leadership. Leadership is the first step to creating your own brand, your own following, and ultimately your success.

Let's look at these four simple tips to building your confidence:


1. Be Perfect


We are our own greatest critics, and we often project those thoughts onto others. Because we judge ourselves, we often believe that others are judging us in the same way.


The reality is that people spend the great majority of their lives thinking about themselves and what is immediate in their world. They do not devote any time to think about whether what you said or did was perfect. These, at most, are fleeting moments of judgment before people go back to doing what’s important to them.

Perfection is a paradox, a contradictory proposition. We cannot be perfect, and yet we are perfect just the way we are. The first step to building confidence is to accept yourself. If you lack confidence in any area of your life, then working on your self-acceptance and your own identity is the place to start:

I am.


How do you describe yourself? Does your choice of words empower you?

If not, change your language, including your inner voice. Our inner voice often tries to protect us with language that disempowers us and reduces our confidence. There is nothing unusual about this. By the way, it’s simply a legacy of the wiring in our brain that acts as a survival mechanism. This is an emotion that comes from the oldest part of our brain, from the days when our top priority in life was survival. It still serves us today because if we need to jump out of the way of a falling object, we need to act fast, and this part of the brain assists us. Everyone experiences this, and the good news is that by changing our language, we can increase our confidence level.

As we have evolved, however, our new brain can make many complex assessments and decisions. So if we think about it, there's no ousting or eviction into a wilderness of savages and hunger in a sales conversation or presentation. We now have the chance to silence that inner voice when it doesn’t serve us and replace it with empowering language.

So we can now condition our brain, and we are using our new brain to train our old brain to understand that we are perfectly fine and there is absolutely nothing to fear.

Exercise: Write down three identity statements right now that reinforce your perfection. Now say it out loud, say it with feeling, sing it, say it in front of a mirror. The more emotion attached to the language, the deeper into your old brain you will condition it.


2. Be Familiar


Here’s another little golden nugget of information extracted from our old brain: What we value even more than survival in our primitive brain is familiarity. Our sense of belonging to a community, a cause, a group, a tribe. By creating familiarity, you will also create confidence.


So ask yourself:

  • What do I already know about my prospect?

  • Or what could I learn about him/her? How can I find out?

Asking questions before constructing your message is very powerful; become familiar with who your audience is, what they're thinking, and what is important to them. With this knowledge, you are going to be more confident that you can serve them.

The next step to familiarity is instant rapport. Most likely, you already know how to do that:

You smile, you raise your eyebrows, you use a soft tone. You already use these things to create.


Familiarity and thus suggesting, “I'm like you.”

I want to make two other points to reinforce this idea are the importance of body language & tonality.

Body language and tonality combined make up most of our communication in the first moments of our sales interactions. It’s really important to get these right to establish familiarity.

Now the good news is that because you already know how to use these modes sub-consciously, I will ask you to use them consciously. Rehearse them, plan them, especially when your prospect is unfamiliar to you.

3. Be Still


Inevitably, when you deliver your message, it will likely be met with some level of resistance. In sales, these can take shape as objections. When you learn to better deal with objections, your confidence will sky-rocket!

When a prospect says no, or anything similar, they are not rejecting you. They are not aligned with your point of view. This is perfectly normal. They are not you, so how can they possibly see things exactly the way you see them?

The treasure in this step is that the more no’s you deal with, the more knowledge you will gain about your prospect.

So let's break it down:

When you get a no, ignore it. Don't try and force your perspective, and don't retort before they've finished speaking.

Let them finish, take a breath to buy you time, and the deeper the breath, the better; the extra oxygen will calm your emotions and give you space to think. This PAUSE is only a few seconds in real-time.

I will warn you, this small window of time can be uncomfortable. Whoever learned to do anything in comfort? So practice your pauses.

Once you're composed, then keep holding your ground and ask a question.

A question you might ask is,

  • "Okay, can I ask a question?”

  • “What is it specifically you don't like?"

  • "I hear you; what do you think the best next steps would be?"

  • "Right, and so can I ask, does what we've covered so far make sense to you?

Effectively, instead of objecting to their objection, or worse, not dealing with it at all, we have asked for more information out of curiosity for a greater understanding.

We've done this by acknowledging them and by asking permission to go deeper. And from there, we can now build on this new information.

4. Be An Expert

Final Tip — and the easiest because it only uses half our brain - the logical half. I am a bit biased here because my natural style tends to be logical instead of emotional. Regardless, it can still be learned.

Here it is, collect facts and become the expert on what you are selling.

The more expertise you have, the more confidence you will have in the sales process. Here are a few questions you can ask yourself to gain this expertise:

  • How has your product or service helped others? For example, get feedback by asking your existing clients what they liked best about your product or service.

  • Where does the product or service come from? For example, what is your company's experience, history, research, or development?

  • What does it do that makes it so good? Make sure you can list the benefits.

  • When did it make its mark? What’s the history? Is it generational, or was it a hallmark moment that brought it to life?

Some of these latter questions are great ingredients for stories you can tell your audience.


Conclusion


Confidence can be learned using these four simple tips. With confidence comes certainty. With certainty comes clarity about how your audience can benefit from what you have to offer. With this formula, you can sell to anyone.


For more information, follow me on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and visit my website!

 

Frank Ferrara, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Frank is a Sales Trainer & Coach with over 20 years in customer service, sales, and sales management.


His previous career was in the electrical industry, selling to contractors, wholesalers, engineering consultants and facilities managers. He spent five years in Sydney running an electrical wholesale operation, which under his management grew to become the most profitable branch in the company. This opened the door to run bigger businesses in Melbourne. He delivered major growth for 3 separate businesses there, increasing sales

  • from $6m to $12m (100% growth in 3 years)

  • from $6m to $30m (500% growth in 5 years)

  • from $8m to $26m (325% growth in 7 years)


Frank now applies everything he learned in his own business, providing sales training and coaching to help business owners grow their customer base. Since founding Stellar Education less than two years ago, he has helped over 50 businesses build sales pipeline, shorten sales cycles and increase conversion rates.

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