Columnists

Squirrel Spotting: 5 Pointers From ‘The Sales Minute’

ColumnistsJul 13, 2021

Squirrel Spotting: 5 Pointers From ‘The Sales Minute’

Peter Smith shares a handful of tips from his latest book that will, hopefully, make you want to read the other 96.

Peter Smith is president of Memoire and Hearts On Fire. He is author of two books, “Hiring Squirrels” and “Sell Something.” Connect with Smith on LinkedIn or at dublinsmith@yahoo.com.
My newest book, “The Sales Minute: 101 Tips for Retail Salespeople,” was just released and is now available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and via other booksellers.

The format is quite different from my previous books in that “The Sales Minute” is built around the idea of quick tips, 101 of them as the subtitle suggests, and does not have to be read from cover to cover to be useful.

To that end, I mixed the tips throughout without chronological consideration.

I had originally intended to do “Tweet-sized” tips, but I ultimately decided that format would underserve some of the topics and tips.

Here are five examples from the book. I hope you enjoy them enough to make you want to read the other 96.

Mirror Your Customer’s Verbal and Non-Verbal Cues

Synchronizing your tone of voice, facial expressions, and body language with your customer’s is an effective yet largely unconscious way to create rapport.

Our brains are hardwired to sync with others (getting thrown out of the cave back in the day was a dangerous proposition), and we are more likely to trust people who mirror our gestures, vocal intonations, and physicality.

Quickly observe your customer’s demeanor (hurried, relaxed, quiet, louder, formal, informal, etc.) and align your behavior and demeanor accordingly.

It can and should be done in a subtle way, but the payoff in connectivity can be profound.

How You Communicate the Price Matters


How you say a price can change a customer’s perception of that price.

Crazy, I know, but studies show that to be the case. The more syllables used in verbally quoting the price, the higher the price is perceived to be.

For instance, “One thousand, five hundred, and fifty dollars” will be perceived as a higher price than “Fifteen-fifty.”

Likewise, a price with a comma, such as $1,550.00, will be perceived as higher than $1550.

When quoting price, condition yourself to use fewer syllables.

“The Sales Minute: 101 Tips for Retail Salespeople” is available now via major booksellers, like Barnes & Noble and Amazon.
“The Sales Minute: 101 Tips for Retail Salespeople” is available now via major booksellers, like Barnes & Noble and Amazon.

Movement

Don’t allow yourself to be stationary for too long as it doesn’t translate well for customers entering your store.

From the earliest evolutionary days, when our ancestors traversed the Serengeti, our brains have been wired to respond to movement. It was, quite simply, how we found dinner, and it was also how we avoided becoming dinner.

Fast-forward 7 million years or so, and our primal brains are still drawn to three-dimensional movement.

Standing behind a counter, inside the front door, or at the back of the store behind a service desk is not likely to draw the attention or interest of a customer.

Movement matters, and it should always be in the customer’s field of view, directly or peripherally, not from behind.

Distracted Listening

As often as we are reminded of the importance of maintaining eye contact and giving our undivided attention, we hear less about the potentially destructive consequences of distracted listening.

Breaking eye contact with a customer sends a signal that you have lost interest and would rather be doing something else, and the impact of that distraction is more damaging to a shared experience than a heated argument. 

Be completely present when you are listening to a customer and break eye contact, with an apology, only when absolutely unavoidable. 


Show Product With Reverence

Always show your products with great reverence and respect. 

What you say will matter little if you handle the product in an overtly carefree manner, and treating your products as undifferentiated commodities invites the customer to do likewise. 

You are conducting visual theater, and the highest compliment you can pay your customer is to present your products with care and consideration. 

You are, in effect, showing the customer how to interact with the product. 

I hope you enjoyed this sample from “The Sales Minute,” and I wish you and yours a safe and enjoyable summer!

 Related stories will be right here … 
Peter Smithis an industry consultant, speaker, and sales trainer, and author of three books, “Hiring Squirrels,” “Sell Something,” and “The Sales Minute.”

The Latest

IndependentsDec 07, 2022
How Daniel’s Jewelers Has Lasted 70+ Holiday Seasons

In a Q&A, CEO David Sherwood shares some company history, the secret to success during the busiest time of year, and more.

TrendsDec 07, 2022
Amanda’s Style File: December Blues

Jewelers of America’s Amanda Gizzi spotlights her favorite turquoise, tanzanite, and zircon December birthstone jewelry.

IndependentsDec 07, 2022
The Radiance Lands at Marissa Collections

The retailer is now selling the 13 diamond jewelry capsule collections created by BIPOC designers on its website.

Brought to you by
How To Buy Colored Gemstones

Give your customers the full gemstone buying experience by using the 6C's.

AuctionsDec 07, 2022
Christie’s Magnificent Jewels Auction Totals Nearly $59M in New York

After a 13-carat pink diamond was pulled ahead of the sale, blue and colorless diamonds reigned supreme.

Weekly QuizDec 01, 2022
This Week’s Quiz
Test your knowledge of the latest jewelry news with this quick test.
Take the Quiz
FinancialsDec 06, 2022
Signet Anticipates Solid Holiday Season, Raises Guidance

The jewelry giant posted a decline in same-store sales in the third quarter but is gearing up for a season of growth.

TrendsDec 06, 2022
Pantone’s 2023 Color of the Year Is A Lot Like Rubellite, Spinel, Ruby

“Viva Magenta” easily finds its colored gemstone counterparts.

Brought to you by
Knowledge and Skills for Today’s Hot Topics

From laboratory-grown diamonds to design to country-of-origin, GIA's Alumni Collective™ has a seminar to suite your needs.

AuctionsDec 06, 2022
Jewels from the Sunken ‘Ship of Gold’ Smash Auction Estimates

Holabird Western Americana Collections offered hundreds of treasures recovered from the S.S. Central America in its Dec. 3 sale.

IndependentsDec 06, 2022
CD Peacock Names VP of Client Engagement, Experience

Qi Holtzman is a member of the second generation to run the family-owned Chicago area jeweler.

IndependentsDec 05, 2022
Holocaust Survivor and Jeffrey Mann Jewelers Matriarch Rena Mann Dies

Mann, who opened the Ohio jewelry store with her husband and son in 1984, was 95.

TechnologyDec 05, 2022
Timex Ticks into the Metaverse with Bored Ape Yacht Club

The watch brand will create 500 custom timepieces for holders of Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs.

EditorsDec 05, 2022
Meet Jewelry’s First TikTok Star

When it comes to translating luxury into the social media platform’s approachable style, JewelsWithJules has cracked the code.

Events & AwardsDec 05, 2022
WJA Foundation Awards Nearly $60K in Scholarships for 2022-2023

Scholarship winners received awards in six different categories.

SourcingDec 02, 2022
Alrosa CEO Sergey Ivanov to Step Down, Report Says

According to Russian news sources, the sanctioned head of the diamond company is leaving to take a job with an investment group.

SourcingDec 02, 2022
Lucapa Sells 170-Carat Pink Diamond Unearthed This Summer

Said to be the largest pink diamond found in hundreds of years, “The Lulo Rose” was sold for an undisclosed sum.

AuctionsDec 02, 2022
Here’s How 2 Royal Jewels Performed at Auction in Denmark

A princess’s tiara fell within its pre-sale estimate while an Art Deco bracelet from a queen doubled it.

CollectionsDec 02, 2022
Piece of the Week: Foundrae’s Chain

A closer look at the bold links reveals a subtle, surprising detail.

Supplier BulletinDec 01, 2022
Take Your Jewelry Design Process Digital with the GIA Alumni Collective™

Sponsored by GIA Alumni Collective™

WatchesDec 01, 2022
Rolex to Certify Pre-Owned Watches

Retailers within its official distribution network will be able to sell the authenticated timepieces.

CollectionsDec 01, 2022
Kendra Scott’s New Collection is for Barbie Girls

The capsule collection combines the brand’s classic styles with Barbie’s signature pink color.

AuctionsDec 01, 2022
13-Carat Pink Diamond Withdrawn From Christie’s Auction

The auction house is not offering any details on why the fancy vivid pink stone was pulled from its upcoming “Magnificent Jewels” sale.

SourcingDec 01, 2022
Nomad’s Is Selling Its Stones to Raise Money for Ukraine Again

In the spirit of an advent calendar, “Gems to Help Ukraine” will sell a stone a day through Dec. 24 on the Nomad’s Instagram account.

GradingDec 01, 2022
PhotoScribe Granted Patent for Method that Verifies a Stone’s Identification

The secure mark combines an overt mark with a covert data set to provide assurance on a gem.

SurveysNov 30, 2022
5 Things Retailers Should Know About the Start to the Holiday Season

Plus, what a potential rail strike would mean for retailers.

WatchesNov 30, 2022
Watchfinder & Co. Will Launch a Marketplace Next Year

It will provide a place for select luxury watch retailers to sell their stock.

MajorsNov 30, 2022
Pomellato Buys Into Italian Goldsmith

The brand has purchased a minority stake in Costanzo & Rizzetto.

×

This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy