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I heard of this technique of building rapport from one of our Sales-Class graduates. It was being used by one of the largest, most successful RV dealers in Florida. So I visited as a prospect to get the first hand experience of how they were doing it.
When arriving, I was greeted by the receptionist and explained my interest in looking at an RV. Since I was there on business, I did not bring my wife with me, she instead went shopping at the local mall while I did my business. It wasn’t long before this six foot something man appeared wearing a cowboy hat, boots and jeans.
This was the first part of building rapport they used, being different. In Florida, there are few cowboys and they stood out. I noticed that all of the salespeople were dressed up like cowboys. During our conversation I asked him where he was from originally and he replied; ”Wisconsin”. This was their sales uniform. Very interesting.
After I explained my interest he began building rapport by asking me a series of probing questions, all about me, my wife, my family, my work, my retirement, my travel desires and more. People love talking about themselves and their dreams. I am no exception. After about 20 minutes I had a feeling that I was with one of my best friends.
He said he had the perfect RV that he wanted to show my wife and me. He said it was off site and asked if I could return around 5:00 PM with my wife and he would give us a free fancy dinner just for looking . I, of course, accepted.
I returned around 5:00 PM with my wife. He asked us if we could follow him to look at the RV since it was off site? We drove for about 10 minutes to the beautiful private lake. And behold, on this plateau overlooking the lake was the RV of my dreams.
We pulled up; he unlocked the door and said for us to enjoy our dinner and tour of the RV and to call him if we had any questions. He asked me to just lock the door when we left.
He then got in his car and drove off!
There we were, alone, in the RV of our dreams with this wonderful meal all laid out with the perfect view of the lake and sunset. It didn’t get any better than this! I was sold. My wife and I had the most memorable, peaceful evening of our marriage.
The next day I returned and began negotiating to get my motor home. I had never wanted something more than to repeat that experience. I made the purchase and drove my RV home with my wife. What started out as a Sales Cross-Study turned into one of the largest purchases in my life.
I have first hand experience that building rapport is one of the most powerful selling techniques you can use to close more sales.
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