So, first let’s step back. Seeing as selling is a human art, I need to start with three key insights about these key part of the selling process called people.
Three big ideas from the overlapping fields of neuroscience, psychology and the social science known as ‘behavioural economics’…
#1. Narrative processing.
People make sense of the world through narrative. The brain is constantly weaving every experience we have into a story that makes sense to us, and has a degree of integrity with who we define ourselves to be.
#2. Ideal identity.
Everybody that breathes wake up in the morning wakes up and has a (mostly subconscious) idea of the kind of ideal life they want to move into. This projected “ideal self” drives a huge amount of conscious and unconscious decision making, i.e. their brain is always looking for ways to be the ideal mum, IT manager, CEO, church volunteer, whatever.
#3. The Amygdala.
Pretty much all cognitive processing (and therefore decision making) is filtered through a primal part of the brain called the amygdala (think – ah-mig-dul-lah!). It’s the the size of an almond and has the constant purpose of keeping you alive.
Crudely put, you can imagine this part of the brain – the part let’s remember, that ALL incoming information get’s filtered through – is constantly asking two questions : “How can I preserve calories?”, and “How do I stay away from threats (in business speak – let’s call this ‘risk’)?”