If you deliver your presentation the same way to each of your customers, you are leaving money on the table.
Think back to your last three customers. One may have been talkative and forthcoming, while the other was quiet and guarded. Perhaps one of your customers lit up when you were talking about the big picture while another only showed interest when you got to the numbers. Even customers in similar industries or roles can have dramatically different personalities. And these Buyer Styles – and how you react to them – can determine whether your meeting is successful or not.
Adjusting your presentation strategy to buyer styles doesn’t have to be as daunting as it sounds. Once you learn how to identify specific personality traits and understand what adjustments you need to make in the way you present, you will have a distinct advantage over your competition.
Below are 4 customer styles based on Social Style Theory and DISC. You’ll learn how to identify different customer styles and what specific presentation strategies are most effective with each type.
4 Buyer Styles and Presentation Strategies:
1. The Amiable Buyer (High S in DISC)
Often the most confusing personality salespeople encounter. Amiable buyers are engaged, ask good questions, seem interested, even make promising statements – and then the deal goes nowhere (to their complete surprise.)
Traits to look for: Friendly and conversational. Agree to meetings even when not a specific need. Responsive. Hates conflict and has trouble saying “no.”
Presentation Strategy for the the Amiable Buyer:
- Verify needs, objectives and timing. Reflect back what the buyer told you.
- Watch for inconsistent body language and probe accordingly.
- Make it easy for the buyer to disagree (“Some customers feel that this is something that they can put off…does that describe you?”)
- Gain agreement on a specific, measurable call-to-action
2. The Analytical Buyer (High C in DISC)
Like it says in the name, this buyer likes to analyze. Buyers in certain technical or financial roles often fall into this category, although you can find them within any organization.
Traits to look for: Detail-oriented. Skeptical of vague statements and general or overzealous claims. Deals in facts. Likes to analyze and compare. Risk adverse and takes time making decisions.
Presentation Strategy for the Analytical Buyer:
- Build your case logically and methodically.
- Provide details and examples along the way.
- Limit the hyperbole and stick to the facts.
- Have sources ready. (These are the customers who will ask to see or want to double check your math!)
- Use metrics and success stories to reduce perception of risk.
3. The Expressive Buyer (High I in DISC)
Many salespeople are also expressive personalities, which makes it easier for them to relate to this extroverted, outgoing buyer.
Traits to look for: Assertive and outgoing. Shorter-than-average attention span. Big picture person. Can be impulsive and makes decisions quickly.
Presentation Strategy for Expressive Buyer:
- Break your topics into smaller (2-3 minute) chunks. A long monologue will lose this buyer right out of the gate.
- Use a variety of engagement techniques (stories, questions, whiteboard, etc.) to maintain the Expressive Buyer’s attention.
- Stay out of the weeds! Focus on the “what” not the “how.”
- Summarize succinctly and often.
- Get immediate commitment to the next step before you’re out of sight and out of mind!
4. The Driver Buyer (High D in DISC)
The higher you go in an organization, the more likely you are to find yourself seated across from a Driver. Direct and to the point, Drivers can be intimidating for inexperienced or unprepared sellers.
Traits to look for: Assertive. Not afraid to state his opinions or expectations. Places needs above relationships. Time-sensitive. Likes to be in control. Tough negotiator.
Presentation Strategy for the Driver Buyer:
- Cut to the chase. Start with what is most important or of interest to your customer. This could be a Key issue, an Insight or Benefit
- Focus on facts and results.
- Be assertive. Stand your ground with a Driver or they will chew you up. (Not comfortable with drivers or lack confidence in this area? Click here for some specific things you can do)
- Use good eye contact.
- Get comfortable with silence.
There are many variations of each style, but likely one of these personality styles will be dominant in your customer. Learn to recognize what Buyer Styles you’re working with and use these presentation strategies to help you communicate more successfully and improve your chances for success.
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