Sales 2.0 – Psychology, Self-Selection, and “Getting There First”


I’ve read, heard, and studied lots of talk about the psychology of sales and marketing.

What makes buyers tick.

How decisions are made.

Prestige, Pleasure, Pain (relief), Profits, or Preservation.

But I was reminded today of another key psychological aspect of sales.

“Getting there first” is a simple rule that Paul Castain’s Sales Playbook talks about.

Want to be a budding (sales) rock star?

Get there first.

When it comes to lead management and generating new sales, showing up last is often worse than not showing up at all. Showing up last means expending time and energy that likely has little chance of success.

Sales studies consistently show that anywhere from 35 to 50 percent of all sales go to the agent who makes first contact. If you’re Vendor # 7 out of 10 attempting to contact a lead, what’s the realistic chance of creating an opportunity?

Furthermore, “Getting there first” is a natural process of self-selection.

As marketers, we spend so much time and energy on SEO because when we’re first on the results list, we have a higher chance of being self-selected. And when a user self-selects, they have a higher level of investment. They want to feel that their self-selected choice was a good one.

Being first means you have the chance to build that same relationship, to make the very first impression. If you’re the right fit, customers want to go with their first choice, because it’s easier, faster, and self-reinforces their belief that they’re “smart, savvy consumers.”

The point of metrics, split testing, sales and lead response software tools is ultimately to close more sales. But one of the key sub-steps to reaching that goal is to gain a psychological “edge” in the customer’s mind.

And being first is a critical factor in doing it.

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