How To Sell Without Selling – The Complete Story

Here’s your biggest opportunity if you are in sales.

It begins if you understand what’s behind the almost universal truth that, as consumers,  “WE LOVE TO BUY BUT HATE TO BE SOLD”.

Which means that “sales” is essentially about a buying process and not a selling process.

If this is true (and it mostly is) why would a salesperson ever try to SELL anything to anybody?

Instead of selling, just focus on discovering the other person’s BUYING process and, then, get out of its way. That’s the challenge.

You can help yourself by understanding the 4 real BARRIERS to BUYING – the reasons why people don’t buy.

The good news is that there are only 4 REAL BARRIERS. They are:

  1. No Trust

  2. No Need

  3. No Help

  4. No Hurry

Even though these barriers might be complicated, essentially there are ONLY 3 THINGS  you have to focus on.

A) What each of the 4 barriers looks like

B) What causes the barriers to buying

C) How to overcome them.

Focusing on  these 3 things effectively becomes your biggest opportunity to increase sales.  Here’s the first one.

A)  The First Thing. What Each of the Barriers LOOKS LIKE

  1. “No Trust” looks like this.  They don’t return your calls. They keep you waiting for a scheduled meeting. They don’t invite you to sit down. They allow distractions and interruptions while you’re in the meeting with them. They object to things you say.

  1. “No Need” sounds like this. ‘We don’t need this right now’ or ‘we’ve got it covered’.

  1. “No Help” sounds like this.  ‘I can’t see how this is going to help us’ or ‘we’ve already got something that takes care of that.’

  1. “No Hurry” looks and sounds like this. They don’t return calls or emails. They make excuses such as ‘It’s with the board’ or ‘We’re looking at our budget’ or ‘I’ll have to discuss this with my manager’ or ‘We are going to wait until the 3rd quarter on this’.

B)  The Second Thing. What CAUSES Each of the Barriers

  1. The major cause of “No Trust” is relationship tension which leads to discomfort over time which leads to ‘no trust’. That’s it.

Relationship tension is the natural tension between human beings when they aren’t comfortable with each other. This tension is usually manifested in inappropriate behavior, lack of competence and commonality, and misinterpreted intent.

  1. The major cause of “No Need” is that they can’t see the need for the product or services you are talking to them about. It’s that simple.

  1. The major cause of “No Help” is that they can’t see how your solution or offering can help deal with, solve, or satisfy the need they have identified or expressed.

  1. The major cause of “No Hurry” is that they aren’t hurting enough. In other words, the consequences of meeting their identified need aren’t severe or punishing enough for them to make the decision NOW. And, this can happen even if they have acknowledged that they trust you, that they do have a need, and that you can help them.

One thing to keep in mind. Even though No Trust is always the FIRST barrier to deal with, it remains a watermark in the buying process and, therefore, trust has to be maintained even while dealing with No Need, No Help, and No Hurry.

C)  The Third Thing. How to OVERCOME Each of the Barriers

  1. How to Overcome “No Trust”.  (Relating process)  To overcome “No Trust”, you must build trust as quickly as possible. Since trust is the end result of comfort over time, you must have the buyer get as comfortable with you. The key is to reduce Relationship Tension as quickly as possible.

As noted in “Causes” in B2) above, Relationship Tension is the natural tension between human beings when they aren’t comfortable with each other. This tension is usually manifested in Inappropriate behavior, lack of Competence and Commonality, and misinterpreted Intent.

So, comfort goes up when Relationship Tension is lowered. You can directly influence this by behaving Appropriately and Competently, using Commonality (sometimes this is as simple as liking the same team), and empathetically demonstrating that your Intent is to help them.

  1. How to Overcome “No Need”. (Discovery process) To overcome “No Need”, you must identify and surface two needs. It’s easy to forget that sales involves completely identifying and surfacing both kinds of needs – the tangible and intangible.

TANGIBLE  needs are ‘task’ needs and deal with the issue or problem that has to be addressed or solved. INTANGIBLE needs are ‘personal’ needs are about how this personally impacts the buyer.

It is critical to surface both the rewarding and punishing consequences on the company and the buyer if the needs are met or aren’t met.

  1. How to Overcome “No Help”. (Advocating process)  To overcome “No Help”, you must present and/or demonstrate how your product and/or service will completely meet both their tangible and intangible need (already covered in the Discovery process in point 2 above).

Your presentation must give a Solution (what it is), an Advantage (how it works), and a Benefit (how the buyer will personally feel as a result).

  1. How to Overcome “No Hurry”. (Supporting process) To overcome “No Hurry”, it is important to recognize that the speed at which the buyer will make a decision is usually directly proportional to the negative/punishing consequences (tangible and intangible) of their identified need not being met.

So, to overcome ‘no hurry’, you have to have done a really good job of finding out what their needs actually are (in the Discovery process in point 2 above).

If the punishing consequences of not making a decision now outweigh the rewards for not making a decision now, you will overcome the “No Hurry” barrier.

As you’ve noted, sales (or what we call ‘buying’) is a complicated process.

If you’d like to know more, please post a comment below (where we’ll answer it for everyone to see), or contact us directly to help you or your organization.