The secret to truly getting on the same level with your potential client is one that may seem obvious, yet often unutilized: Psychology. You may faintly remember brief information from a Psychology class in high school or college – where you learned about Freud, Pavlov’s dogs, and the physiology of the brain. While this information is interesting, it most likely went in one ear and out of the other. Still, some methods of Psychology are vital to finding success. This three-part series will explore various techniques that will boost your sales through simple, tried-and-true tactics beginning with the first four below.

1. Appeal to the needs of your potential client. One of the most used sales tactics for any business is the theory of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. This theory suggests the specific motivations behind the choices we make – and why we make them. Our five needs that drive our decisions are: physiological, safety, love and belonging, esteem, and self-actualization. To make the sale, you must appeal to all of these needs seamlessly. It may seem difficult, but there is a key trick: tell a story using this method. Television advertisements tell stories with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs to make people want to buy a product or watch a movie. Go ahead, turn on the television and try to spot it for yourself.

2. Dress appropriately and professionally. What you wear can say a lot about who you are as a person, especially to the subconscious mind. According to Psychology, humans have preexisting notions of others called “schemas.” We use schemas to decode the world around us based on appearances to quickly decide whether or not the person we are talking to is trustworthy. You want to dress in confidence to exude a sense of authority and trust. If your shirt is buttoned incorrectly or if you are wearing mismatched colors, it may cost you the sale.

3. Give a favor – and expect one in return. In our society, we have social norms that drive our actions. One norm in particular is the social norm of reciprocity – meaning that when you give a favor to someone and act as though you expect nothing in return, the person will feel obligated to reciprocate. This tactic can be tricky, as it requires time and patience. It is never wise to be too hasty or to place verbal expectations on a potential client. Give a favor, act kind, and see what happens next.

Using Psychology to the benefit of increased sales numbers is a technique that has been used since the beginning of business. By utilizing any of these techniques, you’ll see a positive difference in the way you speak with potential clients. Stay tuned for part 2 of this series for more information regarding how to secure your sales.