The other day, I spent several minutes on the phone helping a school owner trouble-shoot his operations.
The thing is, he didn’t pay me for my time, and I don’t really know him before we spoke.
So, how’d he get such a big hunk of my time… for “free”?
He said the magic words:
“I bought your book a while ago…”
Allow me to interpret that, so you’ll understand the psychology behind why I was so willing to provide this individual with my time…
Basically, when I heard those words, my mind interpreted it as, “Mike, I am more than just interested in you and your company… in fact, I’ve taken the extra step to do something that benefits you before I ever contacted you to ask for your help.”
This is what is known in marketing as “reciprocation” – you do something nice for me, and I’ll naturally be compelled to do something nice for you back. And, it’s a powerful sales tool that can “get your foot in the door” with your customers.
How To Use The Principle Of Reciprocation To Get More Students
Now, I should add this caveat regarding reciprocation… after years of having this principle used as a form of overt manipulation, consumers are rather skeptical regarding anything that is “free”.
So, you should exercise this principle with caution… or, rather, with courtesy.
Here’s what I mean:
Instead of overwhelming your prospect with seemingly unbelievable offers of “FREE! FREE! FREE!”, you should instead overwhelm them with outstanding courtesy, professionalism, and customer service – and then as a “by the way” type thing, you give them something for free that they never expected nor requested.
That’s powerful, and it works because it’s a marketing tactic that is based on building relationships and doing things in a way that is at once selfless while at the same time potentially serving you and your school.
So, in case you missed it, here are those magic words:
“How can I help you?” (Hint: They only work when you mean it.)
Wow, what a concept. ;)
— Mike Massie
P.S. – My martial arts membership sales course will show you exactly how to use the principle of reciprocation to get more students… find it at http://martialartssalesbook.com.
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