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Sales Psychology - Understanding People | 100W

Feb 25, 2020 10:14:02 AM / by Stefanie Schweizer

It is worthwhile to take a closer look at the language of a person. Because it reveals a lot about the subconscious thoughts and feelings of customers, partners or employees. Sales psychology helps to understand the psyche of target market.

Definitely it can be a decisive advantage for you to know them. After all, you can enhance the satisfaction of your customers and thus build loyalty to your company.

An authentic and optimal customer approach is therefore important for the success of your company, because it makes your customers feel supported and personally well looked after. In the following article you will learn how sales psychology makes it possible to strengthen the relationship with your customers and what role personal communication plays in this.


Sales psychology - why it is important

People usually make decisions based on social and unconscious processes. This process makes it possible, for example, for customer A to buy a product immediately, while customer B needs more time to think about it, ultimately decides against it or needs additional creative incentives.

For you as an entrepreneur, human decisions like these are equally important and interesting. By knowing the unconscious goals and developments of your customers, you can lead your product, your service or your service to maximum success. In this way, you can take even better care of the concerns of your customers or strengthen the acquisition of new customers.

Sales psychology deals with exactly these human decision processes. It defines various factors that influence people in such situations and ultimately make them act - or not act. Among the most important factors in sales psychology are the so-called motive and the focus. While the former focuses on the motivation behind a decision, the latter focuses on the willingness of a customer to innovate. In simple terms, the two parameters therefore address the following questions:


- What is my customer's goal? (motives)

- How open is my customer to the challenges of innovative solutions? (focus)


Of course, this is a highly simplified representation of a very complex theory of psychology. However, the short excerpt already serves its purpose. Because the information it provides will help you to understand the basic idea of sales psychology and the benefits it can bring you. This way, products, their performance and the associated advertising can be examined and finally optimized.

However, in addition to its use for goods and merchandise, there is also the possibility of effectively applying the theory of sales psychology for good communication with your customers. After all, the factors of sales psychology are just as goal-oriented and effective for a successful conversation and a better exchange with customers.


Basics of sales psychology: Motivation

Basically, a customer's motives express implicit desires and goals - from an innate need to eat like something to a personal dream of admiring the northern lights once in a lifetime. Therefore, sales psychology distinguishes between three primary motives:


  1. The performance motive (for example, the idea of wanting to be better today than yesterday)
  2. The power motive (for example, the need to guide or care for people)
  3. The connection motive (for example by cultivating community and positive relationships and avoiding isolation)


These motives are differently pronounced in each person. However, the weighting of the individual motifs in human language and their use by a person can be seen. This means therefore: So the more important it is for a person to improve, for example, the previous day's performance, the more clearly this aspiration is reflected in an unconscious choice of words. You can use these social insights to respond to the implicit needs and goals of your customers in a profitable and optimal way.

Imagine the following example: A customer writes you an e-mail regarding a business matter. Indirectly, however, by choosing his words he also conveys how important successful cooperation and good teamwork are to him in order to solve the matter. Now you recognize this development and, thanks to sales psychology, you simply react to it. This is why you choose to communicate with this customer, for example, by using more "we" messages. These convey a strong sense of community and emphasise your desire to find solutions to the problem. In this way, you make use of the logical possibilities of science and continue to accompany your partners and customers on both a social and linguistic level in all their projects.


Basics of sales psychology: Regulatory focus

But not only the motives of your customers are important for good communication. In sales psychology, the so-called regulatory focus is also a profitable factor in understanding people. Correctly interpreted, you can also easily draw added value from the focus for better conversations with your customers. Sales psychology differentiates between the so-called Promotion Focus and the so-called Prevention Focus:


- Promotion Focus = also a tendency to approach: puts the well-being of a person in the centre of attention so that the person ultimately bases his decisions on maximum reward.

- Prevention Focus = also avoidance tendency: Emphasizes especially the effort to avoid unwillingness, so that the customer directs his actions primarily to the choice of positive solutions within his comfort zone.


Ultimately, therefore, the regulatory focus also makes it possible to develop improved communication for the respective customer approach. For example, customers with a high level of initiative and willingness to perform (=Promotion Focus) feel addressed by expressions that roughly suggest the prospect of profit and success. This is because the linguistic consideration of the customer's respective focus promotes the feeling of a successful partnership at eye level and therefore results in greater satisfaction.


Utilising sales psychology to understand your customers

Sales psychology clearly shows one thing: The motives and the preferred focus of a customer are ultimately revealed in his choice of words - even if subconsciously. But what does this actually mean for the strategy of your company?

Use the psychological insights to your advantage by working for your customers and partners with a well thought-out strategy. This allows you to use an individual language to accompany your customers in a targeted manner and to respond dynamically to their plans. Ultimately, the attention to your customer's language has a positive influence on the customer experience and creates a close relationship between your customer and you.

How exactly this works and how the innovative use of language can lead to success is shown by various psychological experiments such as the one conducted by Baaren et al. in 2003. The scientists' results can be summarized as follows:

Waiters who repeated the exact wording of the guests when taking their order were tipped more than those who recited any phrase.

Paying attention to a customer's focus and motives creates satisfaction, security and forms the basis for a successful partnership. Both the focus and the motive of a person can both be actively considered linguistically. This gives you the opportunity to use sales psychology to perceive the implicit wishes, goals and feelings of your customers and to respond to them in detail.


Sales psychology for the optimization of your communication

We now offer you the opportunity to create the basis for an even better, more trusting cooperation with your customers. For this we use an innovative strategy based on the findings of sales psychology. With our two-tier model, you can communicate precisely and personally. This allows you to set new standards in customer relations.

With our solution consisting of Social Mimicry and Psychological AI, you and your team start the linguistic optimization for your customer loyalty by taking care of the communication with your partners. Our competent team will also accompany you on the way to understanding your customers even better.

The principle of our strategy is very simple and easy to understand: Based on sales psychology, we have developed several authentic customer profiles for you. We have designed these in such a way that each profile represents a person who, however, pursues different motives and prefers focus. Our innovative two-tier model generates unique linguistic recommendations. And all this in the form of cloud-based software.


If you would like more information, please click Sales.

Alternatively, we can of course also offer you a personal meeting:

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Our recommendations:



Felser, G. (2015). Werbe-und Konsumentenpsychologie. Heidelberg: Springer.

Baaren et al. (2003) Mimikry for Money. In: Journal of Experimental Social Psychology


Tags: Motive, sales psychology, sales skills, motive analysis, customer acquisition

Written By Stefanie Schweizer

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