Yes, you read that right. It goes against all you’ve probably been taught about how to sell. If you make the customer your friend they will buy from you, people like to buy from people they like. I hate to quote Donald Trump but,”Wrong!”. Now don’t get it wrong yourself. We all hope are customers like us and we like being friendly to them. We have to remember something very important though. There is a difference between being friendly and being a friend. See for yourself…
Friend – a person whom one knows and with whom one has a bond of mutual affection, typically exclusive of sexual or family relations.
Friendly – kind and pleasant.
One excludes sex and family, which we can all agree that we all love sex and love our family, at least not at the same time you sick freaks. The other is kind and pleasant, now who wouldn’t want to be treated kindly and pleasant? There is one exception to the rule, you have my permission to try and be friends with your customers if they’re these people:
For yall that don’t know, that’s the cast of the popular 90’s sitcom ‘Friends’.
The reason your trainers and managers preach the friend sales theory is because it’s what’s been preached since the dawn of sales. Short story being if the customers like and trust you, they will believe you when you say:
Salesman: Great news, Mr & Mrs customer. I was able to get my manager to get you a great deal. BTW, I just sent you a friend request on Facebook.😀
Customer: Really, let me accept your friend request. Oh yeah, what’s the great deal? 😀
Salesman: Great, we’re gonna give you the friend discount. The price is MSRP, sign here. 😀
Customer: Wow, what a deal. *signs*😀
We can agree that this is not happening. If it does, be prepared to ask the customer if they have anyone that can cosign. We all know this is what really takes place:
Salesman: Great, we’re gonna give you the friend discount. The price is MSRP, sign here. 😔
Customer: Wow, you think this is our first time buying a car? 😠 Bob Ross Motors down the road said they will beat any deal by 30%. Beat their offer and we’ll sign RIGHT NOW OR WE’LL JUST LEAVE.😠😠😠😠
Salesman: No please, let me get my manager. Brb. 😢🤕😭😢🤕😭
That’s the reason the you can’t be friends with customers. The most important reason. CLOSING THE DEAL. Most salespeople find it hard when it comes to presenting numbers. They find it hard to disconnect from the warm, emotional bond they’ve made with their new friend and the cold, stale numbers that lay in front of them. They think,”Wow, how are they supposed to think I’m their friend when I’m gonna pay for my Hawaii Vacation with this deal.”. Their hands get cold and clammy like they’re about tell their spouse they were working late at the office when they were really out having drinks with the new hot secretary.
You ever hear that old consumer saying,”It was a steal of a deal.”. That’s what most customers think they want, or at least the feeling. Let me tell you something, friends don’t steal from friends. Unless you’re friends with a crackhead, then I’d say get new friends unless you smoke crack too. Customers are like the friend you let borrow $20 and says they’ll pay you back in 2 days. Then you see them in 2 days and it’s like it never took place and you’re thinking where your $20 is and you never ask them for it because you think it’s petty. Don’t be or make that friend. You could get shot and fall in the doorway in a puddle of blood and customers will step on your back walking out the door because the salesman at the dealership down the road said he could beat your deal by $500.
Your job is to guide customers through the car buying process by choosing the right car and coming to an agreement on financial terms.
Here’s an oath I want you to take:
I am a nice salesman, a customer eating machine.
If I am to change this image, I must first change myself.
Customers are food, not friends!
So the next time you find yourself making friends with a customer, just remember.
CUSTOMERS ARE FOOD, NOT FRIENDS