Do you wonder how you can be more persuasive? If you’ve ever experienced a top salesperson you recognize that these folks are very persuasive, but never manipulative. Many salespeople try to be persuasive, but end up being manipulative and don’t earn many sales.

One of the biggest mistakes you make is thinking that persuasion is about telling the prospect. Persuasion has little to do with telling, and everything to do with asking. And the reason this is true is because as you engage the prospect and get them talking about what’s important and what’s important to them and why that’s important the prospect is persuading him or herself!

But you do have to be careful not to ask leading questions intended to move the prospect to your way of thinking. Those questions are manipulative and they will alienate the prospect. When you try to manipulate a prospect you won’t sell that prospect today or ever.

Here’s an example of a highly manipulative set of questions.

“Can you see how buying life insurance today would immediately protect your family’s future?”

“Are you interested in making sure your family’s future is protected?

“If you’re going to protect your family’s future when do you think would be the best time to start?”

While this line of questioning is intended to get the prospect to do what you want them to do it won’t produce many sales, and it certainly won’t help you to develop life-long relationships.

Presuming the prospect has connected with you because they have concerns about protecting their family’s future a more persuasive set of questions might go something like this.

“Can you tell me a little more about the concerns you have for your family’s future?”

“What would you like to see happen for your family in the future and why?”

“If you knew you could make that future a reality what would it allow you to do now?”

Continue asking open-ended questions until both you and the prospect know exactly what the prospect wants. At that point when you ask the prospect if they would be interested in learning how to make that happen their response is going to be “yes”. You haven’t “sold” them or “manipulated” them, but you’ve certainly won their trust and respect and helped them to “buy” the solution that’s right for them.

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