Getting potential customers to choose your roofing company rather than the competition comes down to more than just a name or reputation. Because consumer buying decisions are based in human psychology and emotion, you need to know how the brain interprets information so you can adjust your sales strategy accordingly.
To help close your next big roofing job, try incorporating some of the following psychology-based strategies into your advertising and sales pitch.
Use the Framing Effect
Consumers hate to miss out on opportunities.
For example, consider these two statements:
Book an appointment online and receive a discount!
Book an appointment online before August 1 and receive 10 percent off a new roof installation!
Both offer essentially the same proposition — book online to save some money. Put the first one on your website and you would get a few responses. Use the second appeal, however, and you could expect a considerably higher conversion rate.
Adding a deadline triggers a psychological technique known as the framing effect in your customers’ minds.
According to the framing effect, people react differently based on how options are presented. The thought of being left out — a condition known as loss aversion, or FOMO (fear of missing out) — causes a stronger, more immediate response than a simple discount or reward does.
Marketingland.com used college students to document how the framing effect works. Researchers sent emails reminding Ph.D. students to register for an economics conference. Some emails offered a discount for registering early, others mentioned a penalty for registering late. The penalty email had a much bigger impact, spurring 93 percent of the recipients to sign up early. By contrast, only 67 percent registered early when presented with the discount option.
Understanding the framing effect helps you position your value more effectively to customers. Combine that knowledge with some local market research and you have a good chance of outmaneuvering your competitors.
You Get What You Pay For
In addition to urgency and gain, consumers generally feel better when paying more for things that have tangible value versus paying less on a purchase with suspect quality or little value. To most consumers, price is a reflection of the quality of your work. Furthermore, your willingness to price match is a reflection of how much value they should place in you.
Consider the psychology of “we match all competitive quotes,” “lowest prices in town” or “free roof inspections.” You have set an expectation that your time has no value and your brand is built around a willingness to be cheap. When you take the time to defend your price with a well-developed sales pitch and refuse to compromise on quality, your customer will view your bid as a benchmark for all the rest.
Just keep in mind that you won’t win them all — because there will always be a segment of the market looking for the lowest cost and a company willing to offer it.
Avoid Analysis Paralysis
Always give customers fewer options. This strategy may sound counterintuitive, but if you give consumers too many alternatives, they are likely to avoid choosing any — a result known as “analysis paralysis.”
Instead of overwhelming buyers with every shingle type and color, group your products into a handful of categories from which they can choose, or perform a needs analysis to condition the sale before presenting product options.
Provide Social Proof
People like to fit in with the crowd and follow their peers. If one person approves of your services and products, his/her friends and family are likely to approve too. It’s a technique called social proof.
You can use digital media platforms to provide social proof and showcase how your current customers are benefitting from your roofing expertise.
For instance, always ask recent customers to write reviews on Facebook, Google and the Better Business Bureau (BBB). And don’t forget Yelp and other review sites. You can also encourage your customers to share your social content on their own Facebook pages, which they are more likely to do if you post transformative before-and-after photos and/or videos of their home.
Apply the Theory of Reciprocity
Giving people something helps create a bond between them and your company — even if it’s something as simple as a “like” on Facebook, a helpful video you share or an EagleView Report showing aerial images of their home.
Creating a feeling of loyalty can inspire customers to remember you when they are ready to tackle their next big project.
Let Your Body Talk
When meeting with prospects in person, use nonverbal cues in your body language to help make a good first impression and establish trust.
Open your arms. Crossing your arms signals a closed-off or defensive attitude. Keeping your arms open and relaxed shows that you’re fully involved and interested in the discussion.
Lean forward. Leaning forward and in toward customers illustrates that you’re engaged in the conversation and paying attention.
Mirror. Try to match and mirror the body language of prospective buyers. Reflecting back the same posture, gestures and movements as your customers helps them to relax and feel comfortable during the sales pitch.
Tap Into The Reptilian Brain
Consumers continuously evaluate whether products and services are worth the cost. This decision-making process takes place in the reptilian brain — the oldest evolutionary layer of the brain. The reptilian brain is made up of the brain stem and cerebellum, which not only control the body’s vital functions, such as breathing and heart rate, but also instinctual actions and decisions.
Grab the attention of a customer’s reptilian brain with your company’s website or advertising and you’ll have a much better chance of guiding them toward a sale. This strategy is known as neuromarketing.
For example, the reptilian brain easily understands contrast. Show customers why your business is better than your competitor’s and why what you have to say is important. To stand out, use phrases such as “We are the only …” and “We are the best.”
The reptilian brain is geared to respond to visuals, so images can be far more persuasive than words. Be creative in your communications. Use short, simple sentences and include images that demonstrate the value of your claims. Incorporate customer testimonials as proof and share quick demonstrations of your products that will grab a consumer’s attention.
Incorporating psychology into your sales pitch and advertising is not about trying to trick customers. It’s about understanding how people’s brains interpret information so you can make decisions and focus your messaging accordingly.
Using these strategies to understand people’s minds can help you be more confident in your dealings with prospective customers and ultimately help you land more jobs.
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