Sales and Psychology: We're All Automatons. Plus, Don't Bark at Your Customers

Saw a fantastic piece of automatic psychology happen the other day.

It reminded me of how easy it is to persuade people.

You push a button, you get a reaction.

You tell someone a certain thing; they react in a predictable way.

It’s part of our ancient lizard brain, the part that reacts instinctively, before you even have time to think.


I’d been shopping for groceries and was walking up into the old town.

Some 50 metres ahead of me there was a young black guy. Probably no more than 18 years old.

He’s from Senegal, from some dusty village where there’s only one phone, and he came here across from Africa, looking for a better life.

Grew up rurally. Very rurally.

So he’s walking there, and suddenly this little dog comes pelting around the corner and starts to bark aggressively at the kid.

Without skipping a beat – the very second the pooch appeared – the kid sat down.

No further thought – simply ‘dog=sit down’

I looked at it and thought: how cool. So natural, so automatic.

Makes sense too, especially considering he grew up in nature.

Where he’s from, any animal can be a lethal danger.

He was probably brought up to never confront aggression when faced with an angry animal, and sitting down was the perfect action to avoid confrontation.

Sitting down was an act of deference, signalling to the dog that it was the dominant party in the exchange.

Instant reaction. No hesitation, no doubt, no thought

Buyers are the same: Your behaviour and presentation triggers predictable reactions in them.

(Which is, for example, why we don’t bark at our customers.)

You may think that people are smart – that you are smart – but even you have automatic emotional responses to impulses.

Can’t avoid it, it’s part of our DNA.

Even if we weren’t trained to sit down when confronted with a barking dog.

Your clients can’t avoid it either.

But here’s the secret ingredient: Sales happen in increments

People gradually grow into liking a brand enough to buy.

That can go fast, like when you come across a new blogger, see their $19 eBook, and within ten minutes you’re buying and downloading.

Still took a process of getting ready though, even if it was only ten minutes.

It can also take days, weeks or months, all depending on many variables.

It’s good to remember that each interaction with your prospects is a chance for you to get liked and trusted more.

Don’t worry about the sale – your marketing is meant to build rapport and trust. The sale comes later.


They’ll let you know when they’re ready to buy, trust me.

They’ll click the link to your salespage when it’s right for them.


Once they click, you obviously want to show them stellar salescopy to pull them over the line.

And, you can get that here:





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