In this blog we’re going to teach you how to recognize a buying style by listening to your prospect talk, courtesy of Creative Partner Dr. Nancy Zare and her AlikeAbilityTM sales system. If you’re in the tough spot of needing to connect with other businesses and increase your sales, but not feeling very comfortable with networking, keep reading!
Nancy’s system puts the prospect at the center of the universe, making the sales process all about them. By focusing on how they buy (and their emotional and logical buying habits) you can then mimic their buying/selling style—by making your selling style compatible with their buying personality, you cut down the natural resistance people have to being sold—and enable an open, clear conversation where you can both communicate easily. And when that happens, trust, the most vital ingredient in the sales process, goes way, way up.
Here’s a quick breakdown of the basic buying personality types. You can have elements of more than one style, but for most people, one style tends to be dominant.
Nancy’s buying personality system is called LENS—Learning-Energizing-Networking-Stabilizing.
Intelligent and logical, not emotional thinkers who are lifelong learners. They’re very precise and accurate (the people who find spelling errors). They have a great deal of value for expertise, confidence and self mastery. This is the person who takes a deep nose dive into information and wants to become the expert. They appreciate science because it’s a constant source of new information (and they love the internet for the same reason). What sets the Learning Style apart from others is that they see the big picture of situations.
The Energizing Style values freedom with no rules. Nobody can tell them what to do and they don’t do bosses, ceilings, or limitations of any kind. They’re flexible and spontaneous and will do whatever is expedient and works to get things done. They think it’s just better to do five things while simultaneously having a conversation on their Bluetooth. These risk takers are willing to take big chances if the reward is large. Exciting, enthusiastic and fun—these energetic people will broadcast their buying personality with their high energy and feeling tone. They love competition, but more than that, winning competitions.
The Networking Style is not like the Energizer at all. They highly value authentic, harmonious relationships and have a strong sense of ethics. Personal growth has significant value to them, and they encourage it in others. They truly long to do something that matters, contributes and makes a difference in the world. They are team players who like to work with others. They give to charity when they can, but more importantly, they volunteer, believing that giving of themselves is the best gift they can give.
The Stabilizers value structure and systems. They do not like changing things up—but they balance that out with their deep sense of responsibility, a good grasp of the logistics of situations and always keeping their word, period. These are the people who stick to budgets, follow directions and abide by the rules, even in situations where people think there are no rules. They believe in credentials and tradition. Unlike the Learning Style, Stabilizers tend to zero in on the details and ignore the big picture.
Spot a Buying Personality a Mile Away
If this all seems a little too intimidating—how are you supposed to remember all those personality quirks, let alone figure out if the business owner you met five minutes ago at your Chamber mixer is a Stabilizer or a Learner?
By listening to them talk. That’s it. You can quickly and easily figure out a complete stranger’s buying style by listening to them talk for five minutes. Take a look at Nancy’s LENS for the vocal characteristics of buying styles. Find your style, figure out the style of a few people you know, and the next time you go to a networking event, come prepared to listen and match your prospect’s buying style.
Vocal Characteristics of Buying Personalities
The Learning Style speak at a slow rate with low volume. They tend to pause (because they’re thinking) and stop speaking abruptly. They ask thoughtful, intelligent questions.
The Energizing’s fast speed and full volume tends to drown out any inflection. They love acronyms and interrupt as soon as they know (or think they know) what you are saying. They love texting and may bring out their phones while talking to you.
The Networking Style’s vocal characteristics are moderate speed with full volume. Their warm tone of voice is peppered with inflection. Unlike the Stabilizers, Networkers interrupt to communicate that, “I identify with you.”
Stabilizer’s use moderate speed and low volume in their speaking style. They have some inflection and speak in full sentences—even complete paragraphs. They don’t interrupt conversations and do not appreciate it if you interrupt them.
Planning to try these techniques at the next event you go to? Let us know what happens!