Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Spot Pot Pot the the Hard Hard Sell Sell; Are You a Sucker for Sales Patter? Consumer Expert David Craig Tells CONSUMER Expert David Craig Tells MARION MCMULLEN How to Spot 10 of the Most Common Tactics So You Can Avoid Falling for Them

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Spot Pot Pot the the Hard Hard Sell Sell; Are You a Sucker for Sales Patter? Consumer Expert David Craig Tells CONSUMER Expert David Craig Tells MARION MCMULLEN How to Spot 10 of the Most Common Tactics So You Can Avoid Falling for Them

Article excerpt

Byline: MARION MCMULLEN

next time you're face -person trying to get you to part with your THE next time you're face to face with a salesperson trying to get you to part with your hard-earned cash, be it for home insurance, clothes, new phone or anything else, there are certain tricks and traps you should look out for - here are 10 of the most common.

1 any salesperson they'll usually ask you a few questions. These have two main goals. Most obviously, thePROBE ON your first contact with any salesperson they'll usually ask you a few questions. These have two main goals. Most obviously, they're trying find out what you're looking for. But they're also aimed at finding out how serious you are about buying. For example, a car dealer would want to work out if you're a tyre-kicker (someone who is just looking around but not intending to buy that day) or a fish (someone who can be caught and reeled in).

2 THE PSYCHOLOGY TEST TO be successful in selling to you, a salesperson must quickly work out what kind of a person you are so they can adjust their sales pitch accordingly.

If you're a positive, extrovert, glasshalf-full person, then they'll probably try to sell the dream - stress how what they're selling will improve your life.

If you're more of a glass-half-empty worrier, then the seller will sell security - focus more on the features and performance of what's being sold.

3 THE 'TRUST ME' PERSONA MANY salespeople are trained to portray themselves as trusted advisers helping us make the right buying decision rather than being seen as commission-hungry vultures.

4 THE MAKE-A-FRIEND THEN MAKE-A-DEAL THESE will have many tricks to make us like them as the more we like someone, the more likely we are to buy from them.

One of the most frequently used techniques is called active listening. With active listening the seller will One of many ways of achieving this is the same side of the table. Rather than standing or sitting opposite the customer creating a situation where the seller and buyer are like adversaries facing off, the seller stands or sits almost beside the customer as if they're working together to solve the customer's problem - which house, car, TV, phone or insurance to buy.

use all kinds of non-verbal gestures such as leaning forward, inclining their head slightly to one side, widening their eyes, pursing their lips thoughtfully and stroking their chin to show their interest in us.

Some sellers even sit in front of the mirror at home practising their active listening skills.

THE 5THEPERSUADERS HAVING managed to get us interested in buying something, the seller then needs to get us to make the decision to move ahead.

To put pressure on us, they might try the closing door - a tactic suggesting there's only a limited time to get the deal they're offering; or the phantom buyer - telling us there are other people interested in buying what we want even if this isn't true; auction fever - use other real or phantom buyers to make us feel we have to offer a higher price if we're to get what we want; or even the deliberate mistake - when adding up the price of something, they deliberately "forget" some small part so that the buyer, thinking they're smarter than the seller, rushes to complete the deal. …

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