The end-of-year sales are a big deal if you’ll excuse the pun. The Black Friday Sales – adopted from the US and End-Of-Financial-Year sales (EOFY) are highly anticipated by many consumers. In real estate, the time to sell is Spring because it is the time of year that people can be ready for Christmas and the new year.
6 Principles of sales psychology
Humans are social animals and are very influenced by others. You may not think so but we prefer to blend in rather than stick out. The clothes we wear, the way we socialise, and behaviours we prefer, etc are all part of social influence.
We do, however, love to compete. Sales offer an opportunity for us to blend in and brag about our latest acquisitions bought at a bargain price. Influence is an interesting phenomenon because you cannot be influenced unless you want to be. In other words, only when you are interested to start with will you be tempted. For example, someone disinterested in handbags won’t be bothered going to an Oroton end-of-year handbag sale.
Sales are competitive, social and fun and there are six universal principles of influence in sales. Robert Cialdini a psychologist, conducted scientific research on influence and six principles were derived from his work. He examined what leads people to say “Yes” to requests. The results of his research and his ensuing articles have led to the adoption of sales principles embraced around the world. These are what influence people to buy.
Reciprocity. An internal pull toward repaying what another person has provided us with. This is when sellers give you something to entice you to buy.
Commitment and consistency. Once we make a choice, we consistently work to behave in line with that decision in order to justify it. People love brands and loyalty is an example of this.
Social proof. When people are unsure then we look at what others are doing following that direction or action. This rationalizes our decisions – auctions support the notion that paying the amount is correct.
Liking. We have a higher tendency of agreeing with people we like. This is why celebrities are used to endorse sales.
Authority. We are impressed with those that have the authority or that have great expertise, knowledge, or experience.
Scarcity. We always fear when there is shrinking availability. This is the biggest driver in real estate and why auction is such a successful sales tool.
So, as we head toward Christmas and the Black Friday sales next week take a moment to reflect on how good the sales psychology is. You may even ponder what your contribution is when you buy goods and services. As humans, we are very affected by what is going on around us and we in turn are affecting other people.
Real estate practice is often maligned and sometimes this is justified. However, the power of a crowd should never be underestimated and is in large part what is creating the highs and lows of all sales activity.