Every sale whether to a customer or to an investor starts by understanding the person on the other side of the table, offering a compelling value proposition, and importantly creating a sense of urgency in order to close. Following the thread from last week's post about Time Wasters, that sense of urgency is crucial even for the low hanging fruit because without it, the close never happens.
It's not just about giving people a reason to buy, but a reason to buy NOW. It's by far the most common friction point in any sale and is the primary reason the most successful companies are those addressing "need to have" types of problems. Because let's be honest, it's really freaking hard to find a lucrative addressable market, solve a genuine customer problem, develop a competitive value proposition, and employ an often expensive and sophisticated marketing strategy just to have 80% of your likely prospects say "hmmm let me think about it."
And that's not a made up statistic! According to Forbes the average online shopping cart abandonment rate ranges from 70% - 85%. All of that effort gone to waste for no other reason than because customers are naturally hesitant to try something new. 9 times out of 10 there is no logical reason for this or at least not one where the customer truthfully requires deeper consideration about the purchase. It's an emotional response. It's a discomfort with: making quick decisions, unforeseen consequences, not wanting to fall for a "slick salesperson", or just simple procrastination.
Fight emotion with emotion! The only way to address this friction is to introduce a sense of urgency to buy. You don't do that through a series of logical connections but rather by evoking a fear of missing out. The best way to do that is authentically, for example reminding them of the value being left on the table everyday they don't have your product. Since that can be difficult to pull off in a repeatable fashion for many products, companies will often create their own artificial sense of urgency. ecommerce companies are the best at this because their entire business depends on it. Limited time offers, free shipping in the next 24 hours, and perhaps one of the most effective of all time is Amazon's one-click buy option. While the convenience of that is certainly a big factor, the true power of one-click buying is that it skips most of the stages in the buying process where buyer hesitance sets in.
So how do you create a sense of urgency in your sales process? Hubspot offers a great list of options among countless other ideas you will find online. The bottom line here is to find empathy for the person across the table, use that to establish a feeling of trust, and tap into what motivates them as an individual. Lamborghini dealers don't use test drives as a way to get people in the door. Most customers know everything they need to know about the car to make the purchasing decision before they even walk in the door. The test drive is simply a means to tap into the emotional reasons to say yes and close the deal.