Culture of Character vs Culture of Personality.
It’s a subject we’ve looked at before and how everything changed after 1920. It’s a fascinating read and you should really look in-depth at the character traits here.
Often when it comes to sales and doing business, we often assume people are rational.
We assume that surely the business with the best service, delivered by a person with a strong work ethic, that goes above and beyond and hence has glowing customer reviews will win.
It often isn’t the case.
People aren’t rational with how they buy goods and services. There are so many forces at play and some of this might be hard to read.
When people say that people buy from people, they certainly aren’t wrong.
Let’s look at Why People Aren’t Rational When Doing Business
When I started Altrincham HQ, I weighed nearly 20 stone.
If you’ve known me for a long time, you’ll know that to be true … and if you’ve only seen me on social media over the past 4 or 5 years ago you might be entirely surprised.
I can say with absolute fact that when I started my weight loss journey my sales increasing.
Not just increasing by a small amount, but by an extremely large percentage.
My ability to do my job hadn’t improved (apart from natural improvements which come with more and more hours doing the job).
The reality is despite protestations (and I know you’re saying but I never ever would) – all other things being equal if there are 2 people up for the job / contract they’re going to choose the thinner person over the fatter person. The good-looking person over the ugly one.
Remember I said – people aren’t rational.
Now despite the fact that 70% of my training clients are women in business, I know that some women will never buy from me based on what I have between my legs.
There are women who will only ever buy from / refer to / engage with other women in business.
There are men who will only ever buy from / refer to / engage with other men in business.
Throw in other demographic factors like class, race, sexuality and so on and you’ve got a whole range of influencing factors.
Naturally geographical factors play a part in the make-up of an area for local businesses.
Take a look at the service providers you’ve used. Your clients as well. I suspect the majority are from exactly the same demographics as yourself.
Is there something in your life journey that brings you closer together?
A difficult childhood?
An immigrant in the UK?
Studying at the same university?
When we buy whichever service we’re buying, from accountancy to social media training; graphic design through to photography; financial advice to business coaching … are we really buying just that?
Or are we buying the person that’s selling the service?
Is there something in their story that resonates with us that matters more so than their qualifications or skills?
The shared experience is a powerful thing.
Sometimes the connection gets discussed naturally. Sometimes people tell their story so often it becomes part of their sales process.
Why are there so many build your business to 6 or 7 figure gurus out there?
It’s not realistic or rational that someone earning less than £10,000 a year is going to be a millionaire overnight.
And yet people pay thousands to buy into the aspirational journey / the dream / the myth that they can do this.
If they were thinking rationally, they’d buy from the person with experience who says “This is where you’re are. If you work hard after spending time with us you can grow your income from £10,000 to £30,000 and this is how”.
We get caught up with dreams of the lifestyle, holiday home, the private jet, the swanky hotel and more.
Aspirational sounds more attractive than reality and hard work.
Confidence and assertiveness sells.
It doesn’t always mean the person can back up the bravado, but it does make you listen.
I know from my own industry that there are social media trainers that can speak on video with absolute conviction about a subject and yet everything they’re saying is either A) Not True or B) backed up by their own actions.
You can probably think of someone similar in your industry right now.
I really hate to see intelligent hard working honest people not prosper because they lack confidence.
I’m naturally an introvert (although it might not seem that way from our social media) – but confidence and assertiveness are skills that come with practice and time.
“I am the one and only
Nobody I’d rather be
I am the one and only
You can’t take that away from me”
I’ve got you singing there and also showed your age at knowing Chesney Hawkes.
The one thing that separates people out from their competitors is their interests.
I can only be me, which is why you’ll see me talk about vegan food, running, rock & roll (as well as books and Netflix and cinema trips).
I’m aware that those interests will either turn people off or pull people towards me.
It’s rational to buy from us because I have 500+ reviews, have won a number of awards for our work and have been in business for over a decade.
It’s less rational to buy from us because “I need social media help and Alex is a vegan runner who loves music like me” – but I know people have done that as well.
Is a gut feeling rational?
We’re always told to “Always trust your gut. It knows what your head hasn’t yet figured out?”
And often it does turn out to be right.
That gut feeling when you meet someone at a networking event and you just don’t like them.
That gut feeling when someone follows you on social media and it’s only a matter of time they reveal themselves to be a complete idiot.
What makes us feel this way?
Is it the right way to do business?
Has your gut feeling ever been wrong and you’ve regretted making a snap judgement?
SO …. ARE YOU ENTIRELY RATIONAL WHEN IT COMES TO DOING BUSINESS?
You’ve read the above and if you’re honest you know it’s true.
If people so often aren’t rational when it comes to doing business – how do you think that affects your marketing?
Can you introduce more you and more emotion into marketing?
Or will facts and figures and the truth be enough?
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