I is for Influence

Your ability to create success is in direct proportion to your ability to influence your prospects to buy, and your clients to buy more. David, one of my top insurance producer clients, has mastered the art of influence and his numbers are the proof. Are you interested in increasing your influence and therefore your results? Read on.

The 7 keys to mastering influence:

1. Prepare. Create ideal client and ideal strategic partner profiles. Know your ideal clients inside and out: how much they make, how old they are, married or single, business owners or senior level professionals, what their biggest problems are, what has to happen in order for them to be successful, etc.

2. Get your Game On. If you're not showing up, day in and day out, with your "A Game" you're losing business, opportunities, sales, and income. You can't afford the luxury of a negative thought or a down day. Crack your personal success code by figuring out what lights your fire and light that fire on a daily basis. The consequences of not doing it are simply not worth it.

3. Make contact, lots of contact. The more you make (contacts, connections, calls), the more you make. Whatever you've been doing, double or triple it. You'll get better at making your pitch and closing the deal, your close ratio will go up, and your bottom line will grow. There's no downside to this, only better and better results.

4. Create rapport. In a perfect world, we do business with our friends. Our friends are people we know, like and trust. If I don't know you, I surely don't know if I like you and therefore you don't get my trust, money, or referrals. Cross the bridge from friendly to friend, and you've got all three. In spades. Spend time mastering the art of creating rapport.

5. Gain their interest. Influence truly starts with interest. Be different. Be compelling. Be interestED and interestING. You're always an interruption until you grab their attention. Give them something valuable: do you have a report that educates them on ways they can invest, workout or run their business better? Can you do an evaluation of their past 3 years of tax returns and get them some money back? What if they use the furniture they have, and add a few nice pieces of art for a whole new feel to their home? Tell them something that helps them to be better and they'll want to know more, and right away.

6. Connect them to what ails them and make it bigger. This isn't mean-spirited if you know how to solve their problem. If they are under-insured and you fail to help them, their out-of-pocket expenses are on you. If they inherit a large sum of money and their estate plan isn't up-to-date, what a bummer it will be for them to overpay on their taxes. Your job is to help them see how awesome it's going to be for them once they've engaged you (and how bad it is if they don't).

7. Emotion and logic. As humans, we buy emotionally and justify logically. You need to know both the emotional and logical reasons people buy from you. You'll be able to help your prospective clients justify buying to themselves and those of importance.

Master these seven steps of influence, and more deals are yours! Take advantage of the fact that mass numbers of people believe we're having a bad economy, there's no business to be had, and are therefore not taking action. (Shhh! There's plenty! Go for it!) Enjoy the great results, you deserve them.

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