7 Motivators that Drive all Decision Making
So, what I'd like everybody to do right now is write down on your pad the last major purchase you made. Now, major's different things to different people. For some it may be pajama bottoms, it may be a watch, it may be a house, it may be a car, it may be a business. Let's go ahead and do that, and if you're watching at home, I'd like you just to type in, if you will, what is your last purchase. Let's take about 60 seconds. Everybody write down their last major purchase. Alright, now I'm gonna just go around the room and hear what you say, and I may bring a few of you up here. So, does anybody want to share what their last major purchase was? Laura, if you've got some from the home audience, I'd love to hear them. What do we have there?
So, we have software.
Which is, you know, if you're buying for a company, that's a major purchase.
And also housing, a house.
A house! Okay, great, housing, a house. Alright, what do we have here in the studio audien...
ce? Last major purchase. Car, okay, car. Somebody else? Car.
Family vacation. Awesome, somebody else?
A watch. Alright, I'm gonna ask car, watch, vacation to come on up to the front. So, the last thing you said you purchased was what?
Was my watch.
I'm wearing it, my watch.
Like a nice watch. Carly, the last thing you purchased was a car.
Why'd you buy that car?
I liked how it looked, it was in great condition, and the interior was great, low mileage, price was right.
Okay, so the price was right, low mileage, okay. And what kind of car did you buy?
2004 Nissan Altima.
A Nissan Altima. Okay, and why did you get an Altima, for example, as opposed to a Volkswagen?
Because of where I was purchasing it from. It was a limited selection.
Okay, but why did you need a new car?
Oh, because (clears throat) I rear ended somebody, so my car was totaled. (laughing) So, I needed a new car.
Why that car?
This particular car?
It was great, it was decent looking, it was comfortable to drive in, it was four doors. I have to say that this was probably a little bit more logical for me than usual, you know? But overall, I felt good driving it.
You felt good driving it.
Okay, how does it make you feel driving it?
Safe, okay. So, we've got safety. So, you're at a time in your life where practicality may be a little bit more important. Have you ever had a hot rod?
Yeah, I did, my first car.
What was it?
Yeah, it was a 1976 Nova.
Don't laugh, it was really fast.
And how did that make you feel?
Powerful! Okay, so emotions change over time, we see that too. So, you felt powerful and so you bought a certain car because it made you feel powerful. Alright, Carly, thank you very much for sharing that. Mario, why did you buy a vacation?
Because I have been traveling quite extensively over the last few months, and so every time I.... I generally like to not leave my family behind. My rule is is travel three to four days out of the month, and but if it goes well over that, which it has for the last few months, then I have to bring my family with me because they deserve some time off too.
Okay, did you hear that? They deserve some time off. So, really, you were making the decision for what?
Family vacation? (laughing) I think that's where you're going. Actually, I was having to travel again for work. I'm speaking out in Florida and so I said 'family, you're coming along with me.'
And how does your family feel if you don't take them and you're traveling too much, Mario? How does Shauna feel about that?
Oh, yeah, they're not very ha... Especially if it's in Florida, like Fort Lauderdale, by the beaches with a nice hotel, pretty view of the ocean beach. Yeah, that would be bad. (laughing)
Yeah, yeah. So, you can see, you can see the emotion. Again, I want you to see that, you know, we rarely make decisions out of logic. And these are all personal purchases, and I'm gonna show you how even business to business there's an emotional component. So, we've got safety, we've got family, and now we've got a watch.
Yes, my watch. So, I've wanted this watch since I was about 20 years old. And my first sales job I told myself I would live in Tiburon and own this watch. I don't live in Tiburon, but I now own this watch. So, when the opportunity came up and it was an option, tax return, bonus came through, I wanted... I felt I deserved the watch.
You felt like you deserved it.
Yeah, I earned this watch.
Was there any status to this watch? Just out of curiosity.
Personal status. Personal status, I like to walk into... There's a lot of flashy watches in some of those meetings, and I wanted one too. (laughing)
Okay, so... And a lot of people won't admit this, right? We don't admit, oh, I bought it for status. I've done this exercise all over the world and I always laugh when people say 'oh, I bought a BMW' or 'I bought a Porsche.' Why, 'I needed a car!' Yeah, well my husband's Hyundai would've done just fine. That shopping cart will get you from point A to point B. And sometimes it takes people a while to come around to the fact of why they really bought it. So, we've got a little bit of status and pride and I deserve it.
Oh, yeah, I wanted... I wanted to be in the Cartier club. I've joined the Cartier club, which was important to me. I'm not ashamed to say that.
Awesome, alright. Let's give them a hand, thank you. (clapping) I really need somebody here to challenge me and to tell me that they bought something totally logically.
I just had my first baby about a month and a half ago and we wouldn't all fit in the same car. So, we had to buy a car just simply to get from point A to point B, unless we wanted to leave the baby at home. That was the logic decision behind that.
So, this logical decision that you made. Okay, this very logical decision that you made. Okay, wait, is that logic face? Look at the face, look at the face, or is that Atticus face?
That is emotion, you got me there.
Thank you. (laughing)
I'm taking my baby back.
Ladies and gentlemen, there are seven key motivators that cause anybody to do anything, and once we understand what those are, I hate to say it, we can sell anybody anything. We really can, assuming that it's for them. I'm not telling you to sell something that's not for somebody, but the biggest reason people miss sales is they're on the skin level. We all know people buy for heartfelt reasons, and if we keep telling people the square footage of the home we're selling or all of the features of the software, we're gonna lose them. We need to link our product offering to the emotional benefit that they receive, but I can tell you very few sales people do this. Let's look at... This is breakthrough. These are the seven key motivators that drive all decision making. I can tell you right now, if you're selling B2C, this is huge. It's a little less obvious selling B2B, but it's there, and once you understand it, your sales will change, your life will change, and the good news is you'll have more of those things yourself. Right, because here's another thing. Think about it this way. I love doing this exercise. And for managers and leaders that are watching this today, here's a great exercise to do with your team. Ask them what their goals are and they'll always put it in terms of a secondary motivator like money. Oh, I want an extra $5,000 a month, great! Ask them what would you do with it. Okay, because that first question's a skin question, right? What are your goals? It's gonna be a skin question, okay? So, when you ask that question they're gonna say, 'oh, you know, an extra $5,000 a month,' but then ask them why. And pretty soon you'll get to one of these seven key motivators that drive all decision making. Only when ask skin, bone, and heart questions are you going to get there. A quick example, there's a company that we work with, a real estate company that we work with in Park City, and a woman named Anne was selling homes. We'd gone through this together and she asked a customer, 'what kind of home are you looking for?' The customer said, 'well, we're looking for a home that's 3,200 square feet.' She said, 'and what other types of things are you looking for?' He said, 'well, I'm looking for a yard.' Now, if that's all Carol-Anne did is ask that first level or that skin question, she may not have made a sale because the truth was in that square footage, in the price range, there was no home available that met those needs. Well, fortunately, Anne went a little deeper and she said 'why?' 'Why are you looking for a home with a yard?' And that's when the husband divulged that this was his second marriage, the first one didn't work out, and he swore to his wife that he would play ball with their son every single day after work. Well, turns out they weren't able to find a house with a yard in it, not in that price range. They were able to find a great house right next to the school. The power of these heart questions, these emotional questions, is huge, and we'll look at how that relates to B2B a little bit too, and does it work when you're selling a complex software product, because the answer is absolutely yes. I just want to see if anybody has any questions about the skin, bone, and heart questions. Mario.
I think I could get all of the elements there of what we're looking for in terms of some sort of emotional attachment. Explain to me adventure.
Oh, well, you know, if you look at why people do what they do, you said that you bought a vacation, right? So, one of the emotional reasons that somebody might go on a vacation might be for just literally fun or adventure. Now, again, depending on the product you're selling... If you're selling funeral plaques, that's not gonna be an emotional motivator. You know, truly, it's not going to be, again, so much of an emotion... When you're selling business to business, you're gonna focus more on business problems than you are emotional motivators. And I think this is the most important thing I wanna say to a diverse audience, right? So, usually when we train we're working just B2B or just B2C but I wanted to help you think about this because also this is a class about negotiating and selling anything to anybody, and when you're selling to consumer, these become much more important. And depending on the product that you're selling, it might be a product where the end emotional result is simply to have fun. Okay, but great question, great question. Yeah, David.
So, when we're talking about this, it's a process. So, can you go right to the heart or do you go skin, bone, to heart? Is there any secret sauce or is there any way to know? Because I'm looking at my questions, I'm like that's skin, and I can see myself going skin as qualifying. When do we go to the heart?
That is a terrific question. Does anybody wanna answer that for David? Anybody think they have an answer for that question?
Well my experience is if you go too quickly to the heart, you haven't earned the right, the trust, and the rapport to get an authentic answer. From that, you have to build up to it.
Yeah, is that everybody else's experience? Yeah, Mario?
Yes, I would argue, though, that understanding the heart type questions are critical in the first conversation to get to the next conversation and the next conversation, and I don't think you're gonna ever get all of the heart questions right up front. It's gonna be over a process of time through your sales cycle, unless it's a one-time conversation closed type model. But in the B2B world, it's a process and it's gonna take a couple times to get that heart.
Yeah, it really is, and you bring up a good point. If you've got a long sales cycle, anything longer than three months, six months, you might get that heart question over time. I can tell you, if you start with the heart, it's creepy. So, tell me why are you... It's too much, you know? It's like man meets a woman at a bar, you know, and right away it's just too much too fast, right? So, here's some dating advice. If you start with the heart, you'll never get to the skin. (laughing) Just thought of that. Am I allowed to say stuff like this? Go ahead.
I was gonna say, you know, I've been fortunate enough to have found Sherry's book and really start to use these skin, bone, and heart questions in our sales process with my sales team, and I've found that the skin and the bone oftentimes go hand in hand. So, you know, you can kinda piggy back off your first question and go into the second one and then go back to the first one and piggy back off... But you can kinda do that back and forth little ping pong thing for a while, and then when you feel like they've warmed up to you and also you've warmed up to them, that's really where it's easier to kinda go in. But I don't really think of it as one, two, three, I think of it as one, two like a combo pair that kinda stick together for a while, and then when you're ready you kinda transition to three. And just trying it and doing it over some time, that's what I've found.
Yeah, and it's having the discipline, really, to write those questions out in advance. And again, if it is a longer sales cycle, what I recommend that you do is each time you meet with that customer, if you do nothing else, spend more time crafting questions. And remember this, anything that can be told can be asked. You are far better off asking a series of targeted questions than you are delivering a perfectly polished presentation. The better your questions, the more likely you are to get a sale no matter what you're selling. We talked about how to sell the way your customers buy. Customers actually like you more when you ask better questions. They understand your intelligence when you ask better questions. Good questions can reveal insights and can reveal problems that the customer didn't even know that he or she had. So, are you spending enough time thinking? And each time you meet with that customer, I want you to get together with whoever you're dealing with and say, 'what kinds of questions am I going to ask?' Now, just before the break, you have to know exactly what information you're trying to find, and many sales people ask good questions, they ask the skin, bone, and the heart, but unless they know the information they're trying to find, it becomes very difficult. Really quickly, Suzanne, I want you to come up and draw a map of the Unites States. We're gonna flip this around. (mumbling) Do we have a way to flip that around? Suzanne and I just met at a conference I was speaking at at Outbound, and she came all the way from Texas (mumbles)
This is Florida, I don't know where Texas is. (laughing)
But we know what it is kind of, right? That's the...
It's the United States.
We know it's not The San Francisco Bridge or Snow White's castle. Okay, Suzanne, let's say that you and I are... Okay, where are we? Go ahead and put an x where you and I are, where we all are. Okay, now let's say you and I decided to go on a road trip to Florida. Okay, because the weather's really nice there right now. So, let's go ahead and put an x there now. Yeah, now, and let's say that we decided to go on this trip, but we didn't have a map, right? We didn't have a GPS, we didn't have a map, but we decided let's go on a road trip. What might happen is we might go from California to Oregon. Yeah, around there, or Nevada or Wyoming, right. Okay, and then we may say 'wow, it's really cold here. Let's travel by car to where it's a little warmer. Let's go down to Arizona.' Okay, perfect, and you know what? Let's go ahead and go now, but we kinda go a little bit out of the way and we end up in Chicago. But they've got great jazz in Chicago, right? Okay, so we end up going to Chicago, and then finally, we end up heading south and we get to Florida. Question, and let's give Suzanne a hand. Brilliant, woo! (cheering and clapping) Here's the question. Yes, thank you, you did awesome. Here's the question that I have for you, Suzanne. Did we ultimately get to the destination? We absolutely did. Now, is it possible that we might run out of gas on the way, though, because we went a whole lot of different places that we really didn't need to go? Here's what happens with your customers. If we don't know the exact questions we're gonna ask in the order that we're gonna ask them, we are going to take our customers on a journey where they don't need to go, and I assure you they will run out of gas. And that's why your deals stall. That's why customers don't get back to us, because we give them irrelevant information, we don't think about what's in it for them. That's why we end up missing deals, whether you're an entrepreneur B2C or B2B.