Empathy is one of the most important skills in the world of sales. Why? That’s precisely what we’re going to explore today.
To start, let’s review the definition of empathy.
Empathy is the ability to understand the perspective of another person with respect to their experiences and position.
You can also think of empathy as walking a mile in the shoes of the person you’re talking to.
Empathy is about learning and embodying what someone else is thinking or feeling.
Sympathy isn’t related to empathy; there are two different things. Empathy is not feeling a certain way toward someone, but instead trying to genuinely understand their perspective regarding a specific situation.
Now we have recapped the meaning of empathy, let’s explore the context of empathy in sales to discover its importance.
Empathy in Sales
Empathy in sales refers to prioritizing the emotions and feelings of the customers. By respecting and understanding customers’ perspectives and thinking, a salesperson can build trust and foster a healthy relationship with their customers.
As they say, people buy from the people they trust. Empathy can help secure that trustworthy position in the eyes of your prospects. After all, we all are humans, and using the basic psychology of empathy in sales can generate great results.
Let’s move forward and check out how important is empathy for sales.
The Importance of Empathy in Sales
Empathy is the bread and butter of people in sales. Without empathy, it’s not possible to produce any favorable results in the sales space. Here’s how important empathy is for sales:
Empathy Builds Trust
“If people like you, they’ll listen to you, but if they trust you, they’ll do business with you” – Zig Ziglar.
Trust is one of the essential building blocks that lead to success in sales. If you are unable to create a trusting relationship with your prospect, you’ll have a hard time getting anywhere with them.
When a salesperson exercises empathy, prospects and customers start to trust them. They might not praise the salesperson for showing empathy, but it helps to build a more open and authentic connection. We all know how far a trust-based relationship in the world of sales goes.
Increases Sales, Referrals and Loyalty
Closing sales is all about anticipating the true needs of your customer and then offering them the best solution.
By exercising empathy, you’ll automatically understand the fears, desires, and needs of your prospect. This will help you to present the perfect solution to the client; thus, you’ll end up closing more deals.
Empathy will not just help you to close more deals; it will also turn your customers into your fans. Your monthly or weekly empathetic phone call to your existing clients will make them loyal to you. As a matter of fact, they’ll also act as your free referral generators.
Drives Productivity and Innovation
Empathy in sales does not only increase sales, referrals, and loyal customers; it also drives productivity and innovation.
Salespeople with strong empathy skills also tend to be more productive and innovative. As they are true friends and analyzers of humans, they tend to produce more innovative ideas than salespeople who only have an eye for their commission.
Apart from being innovators, salespeople with good empathy skills are also found to be more productive. As the sales world is all about interacting with people, their empathetic behavior gives them an edge over others when closing deals and shaking hands.
Who would have thought that empathy can pull off such things?
Improves Question Quality
Empathetic salespeople are always curious, since they want to learn about the true feelings of their prospects. This improves their questioning power and helps them to ask the right questions to reveal the best information.
Questioning is one of the most essential skills in sales. People with an empathetic personality tend to enjoy the extra benefit of asking questions and gradually diving deeper into the character of their prospects.
Without asking good questions, a salesperson can’t be successful in closing the right deals. Exercising empathy automatically unlocks the power of questioning and can unlock untold levels of success.
Aids in Defining Problems and Finding Solutions
People who work in a sales department know how the sales world works. For salespeople, it’s all about laying out the problems and then crafting the right solutions for their clients.
By exercising empathy, a salesperson can easily gain more in-depth insight into the character of a person. Thus, it gets easier to define their problems.
Once the problems are listed out, an empathetic salesperson also develops a solution that’s perfect for solving the issue of the client.
Unlike salespeople who are just about closing the deals and earning their commission, an empathic salesperson can identify the problem and come up with more effective solutions for their prospect.
Uncover What’s Hidden
Start creating a scenario in your mind.
A salesperson calls you and reads a script that you have listened to many times. Even if he’s proposing a solution to your needs, will you even consider continue talking to the person?
On the other hand, a salesperson calls you and asks you about your problems, listens to you carefully, and shows care – you’re more likely to keep on talking, right?
Empathy leaves a great impression on the prospect and uncovers what’s hidden. If a salesperson will lead the conversation with empathy, the prospect will be more than happy to uncover things that would have remained hidden otherwise.
Empathy is a small change that can produce great results in the world of sales. If you aren’t showing authenticity and humanity to your prospect or not developing solutions according to their perspective, there’s slim chance that you will be successful in the sales space.