For the last several years, selling has moved away from the days of employing borderline shady techniques and pushing information down people’s throats to close sales. More and more consumers have become more discerning and won’t give in to that selling trick of giving you two yeses so that they can put their credit cards through the sales. Dry pitches that only list product benefits without context are going to fall flat. Utilizing storytelling in your sales approach helps to create immersive experiences, according to a Spanish study that appeared in the New York Times, and are much more effective when they follow a narrative. Here are three reasons why selling through storytelling has proven to be effective.
People Retain More Through Stories
We remember stories. When data and facts are framed within a compelling story, you will hold your audience’s attention and help them to connect the bits and pieces of the story to their context. Stories are so useful in regards to making listeners remember that storytelling is now used for a range of different applications. According to Sales Benchmark Index, utilizing storytelling in sales helps to capture the attention of consumers, so it makes sense that the marketing world thrives on narratives. In fact, people retain 65 to 70 percent of the information shared through stories, while only 5 to 10 percent of information is retained with a dry presentation of data and statistics.
Stories Appeal to Both Logic and Emotions
Most sales departments create presentations that show why their products are the most logical solution for their customers. It is imperative to know your product inside and out and be able to pair the features of the products with the scenarios customers face daily in their business. According to Michael Gazzaniga, the director for the SAGE Center for the Study of Mind at the University of California, Santa Barbara, incorporating stories into sales presentations help to sync the left and right hemispheres of our brain. The truth is that our purchases and business decisions are made with both logic and emotions.
Stories Make Consumers Visualize the Product
There is nothing better in sales than having a clear understanding of the situation that you’re prospects are in. Knowing what they face every day and the struggles that come with it is nothing short of sales gold. While sales professionals are smart to bring up pain points and the unique experiences of their clients, nothing quite works as well as telling a story. Tell your clients about the initial doubts that your other customers have and how those doubts were soothed when they onboard the product. Make sure to let the details speak. Your clients want nothing more than to be assured that your product already can be associated with a success story, and will ultimately want to be the next one.
When it comes to incorporating storytelling in your sales techniques, it’s important not to get carried away and overstate the benefits of your product or services. Remember, fiction is a fantastic tool for telling the truth. So stick to the realistic scenarios and include as much detail as possible within the realm of what’s logical.