VUSSC/Content/Entrepreneurship/Selling and the Customer/Persuading the Customer
Persuading the Customer
Persuading the customer is not a new concept to you as an entrepreneur. What is your understanding of customer persuasion? There are several ways of persuading customers. Which are some of these?
In entrepreneurship, it goes without saying that the purpose of selling is to make a profit. Salespersons who sell successfully have to develop the skill of persuading the customers who patronise their enterprises. Basically, there are two ways of persuading the customer.
- Good public relations
The way you interact with your customers determines whther they will come to buy your product again. Public relations involves many things, including how you handle customer complaints, and how the entrepreneur helps the customer to make informed decisions when they buy.
This is a paid form of influencing the customers. It can be done through the radio, newspapers, posters, etc. We say it is a paid form because money has to be paid for an advertisement to go through. Advertising includes sales promotion, for example, two products for the price of one, free samples, discounts, etc. To persuade the customer, there must be friendly relationships between the customer and the salesperson.
It is worth noting that persuasion is not a verbal battle. The ability to persuade can be acquired. Any salesperson who thinks that salesmanship is 'beating the buyer in a verbal duel' is misguided. Hard intensive selling is often necessary, and a salesperson has to put her case over, but the prospective buyer must be induced by persuasion to change her mind - sometimes to change lifelong habits or an established order of things.
- Apart from its use in a salesperson's comments, how can suggestion be used in selling? Support with examples from your business.
- State the advantages a salesperson gains by training herself to recognise the broad classification to which her customers belong.
- Why should an entrepreneur always try to ascertain their customer's motives for buying?