Triggers to Buying – According to Neuroscience

by | Oct 4, 2013 | 0 comments

Do you know what causes people to spend money? If you work for a living, then knowing what influences a person to reach into their wallet should direct your actions daily. In the book Neuromarketing: Understanding the Buy Buttons in Your Customer’s Brain  authors Patrick Renvoise and Christophe Morin examine some of the triggers to buying. I am going to give you a few here to chew on.

Photo courtesy of Flickr/Creative Commons/flickrfavorites [/featured-image]


Triggers to Buying

First  we are all in sales.  We are either selling ourselves, our projects, or our products. And when we forget we are in sales, our customers (employers) soon forget about us. 

Second, not everyone cares about the same issues. According to the text, these are the common buying triggers. These apply to companies as well as individuals.

  • Financial pain can be your customer’s desire to increase revenue or decrease expenses. 
  • Strategic pain results from issues related to processes such as quality for companies or skill sets for individuals. 
  • Personal pain is feeling and emotions such as stress, high work load, or morale issues. 
Third, we have to determine the level of the real pain. While each of the common pain factors above might apply, talking to the wrong one will miss the mark. If you are highly stressed due to overwork and long hours, I would not serve you well by talking about increasing your skills by going back to school. That would just sound like more work. But, if I tried to sell you on going back to school as a mental break from the routine, you might listen. 

Why Pain Matters 

When we are trying to sale something like a product, and idea, or our skills, we have to first be aware that the one listening to our pitch is a human being. They have feelings and concerns of their own. As we talk or as they read our email, their mind is thinking about something more than what we are saying. 

When we see an advertisement, we are processing it while we are reading. The first think that comes to our mind is whether the product or service can relieve our pain.


Two Examples of Pain Based Selling

Painting my House

A painter comes to my door and is trying to persuade me to hire him paint my home. We can both see my home needs painting by the peeling paint and mildew on the gutters, so the need is there. But he is talking money and how cheap he can do the work (financial pain) and I am thinking that I need the paint job to be done well so that the house is protected for a long time (strategic). He may can do a quality job, but he has lost me because he has not first diagnosed my pain. I decide to find a quality painter instead of a cheap painter. 

Olympic Flags

In the book, Neuromarketing, the authors tell the story of flag companies bidding on the making of the flags for the Atlanta Olympics. As each company presented, they each focused on price because they thought the price was the big issue. Yet, a French flag company asked some questions (diagnosed the pain) and realized that the key issue was not price, but quality. The Olympic committee was seriously concerned about the impact of quality standards. What if one countries flag was wrong? What if the colors were not right? What if Germany’s flag was smaller than all the other countries? The result would be an international incident. The French flag company proposed a quality control program and the highest price. They won the bid. 


Before you open you mouth to sell someone your product or service, first understand their pain. <Click to Tweet>


[reminder]What is the pain of your employer for your role at work?  [/reminder]

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Dale Callahan

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