6 Rapport building tips to make more sales
6 rapport building tips.
Sales are made as a result of effective communication between buyer and seller. Building rapport lies at the heart of effective communication. Therefore, knowing how to develop rapport is key to your sales success and performance.
Below are 3 body language related and 3 general tips to build rapport with prospects in an effective way.
If you have not had much formal practice in understanding body language yet, don't worry. We are all natural experts, but often just not aware of it yet. So have a go after reading these tips. They really work.
Observe your prospect’s body movements, facial expression, arms and hands. What posture is the prospect assuming? What are they doing with their arms and hands? Is the person leaning forward or backward? How do they look at you?
Observe, and then match their posture and gestures.
If for example, the person is reserved in using their hands, there is no point in you gesticulating frantically to make your point. Instead show the same level of reservation.
Look at this fabulous example below showing US President Barack Obama and UK prime minister David Cameron building rapport at world leader level. They both carry their jackets over their shoulder. They are clearly in tune with each other.
- Energy level
What is your prospect’s energy level? Reserved or extrovert?
Observe their energy level and match their style.
If your prospect is wordy and engaging, then be the same. If your prospect is to the point and factual, then do the same when asking questions and presenting your products.
- Tone of voice
What is your prospect’s tone of voice? How fast do they talk?
Listen and match their style.
A softly spoken prospect will respond better to you when you match their style. Do the opposite and rapport building has just become much more difficult and the sales opportunity may disappear.
You may be interested to know that hostage negotiators across the globe have been using these techniques as a matter of life and death for years.
Here are 3 additional rapport building tips related to the sales profession
- Be yourself
The prospect will have just two questions in mind: "Can I trust him/her?" and "Can I do business with him/her?" By being yourself you will show your genuine interest in your prospect's business success. That is a good way to build rapport.
- Be on time
Start with setting the standard of product delivery by being on time for the meeting. 15 minutes before the appointment time will work well. And if you are late, call the prospect personally. It is a great rapport building opportunity!
- Look the part
Show respect for your prospects by looking smart from hair cut to shoes and even that clean car. You are the company representative. Respect and rapport go well together.