All customers are liars.

If you have ever sold anything, you have been lied to. That’s because all customers are liars. And, being that you and I are customers, we are liars too. 

Very rarely do we tell a salesman, “No, I don’t want to buy your shitty product because I have no use for it.” Instead, we make up a lie, the most common being, “I can’t afford it.” 

While I wish the world was more honest, it’s not. So, it is our jobs as salespeople to get our prospective customers to tell the truth. Or, if they refuse to tell the truth, discover what truths their lies are covering up. 

In reality when a customer says, “I can’t afford it”… what they are really saying is, “I am not willing to risk my hard earned money on your product that I am uncertain about.”

Now, some people reading this might make the argument that some customers really can’t afford the product you are selling, to which I would agree. 

But, to which I would also argue that a large chunk of the United States can’t afford the iPhone X but this hasn’t stopped them from buying it. 

How come they can’t afford it? Because customers find a way to cough up the money for things they really want. Zig Ziglar sums this up well in his book Secrets of Closing The Sale.

People buy what they want when they want it more than they want the money it costs.

Write that down. It is applicable to anyone, whether you are selling snow globes, helicopters or SaaS products. 

Now, let’s rewind. When a customer looks you in the eyes and says, “I can’t afford it”… what they are really saying is, “I am not willing to risk my hard earned money on your product that I am uncertain about.”

To this answer, you need be asking yourself two questions:

How can I remove all risk in buying my product? 

How can I remove all uncertainty in buying my product? 

Pause. Before reading any further, take a moment and think about how you yourself would go about answering these questions. Keep them in mind as you continue to read, I will be curious to know if we thought up similar solutions. 

Now, let’s continue. 

I consider myself a creative individual but when you are face to face with a customer, creativity isn’t the first tool you should reach for in your toolbox.

However, logic is. 

When you understand that your customers buy because of emotion but justify their purchases with fact… you realize that it is your job as a salesperson to give them the facts. Or, rather, help them through the buying process in a logical way. 

I believe the best way to do this is by removing both risk and uncertainty like I mentioned previously. 

I would do this by:

Offering a two-week money back guarantee or a free trial and in turn, remove all risk from trying the product or service out. 

Show them previous cases where the product or service has worked wonders for individual more impressive than themselves. 

One was pretty self-explanatory, but I think it is important we talk more about two. 

Why do you think websites include testimonials of high-caliber individuals? It’s because when customers come to visit their website and see that Jeff Bezos said this product was the bee’s knees… they will believe it is the bee’s knees. 

In other words, if it worked for someone like the Prince of Amazon, it has to work for me. Right? 

While all customers are liars, all customers also have truths their lies are covering up. It is our jobs as salespeople to uncover these truths and then provide a logical fact driven answer to them. 

“Oh, you can’t afford this Greg? Well… what if I gave you a couple weeks to try it out? Jim down the street did and he still uses it to this day.”

By Cole Schafer. 

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