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  • Writer's pictureSuzanne Wagner

Veni, vidi, vici, but I couldn't make the sale

Updated: Sep 23, 2019

"Si vis ad persuadendum, me in cogitatu meo cogitandum, sentiunt affectus mei, et loqueris verba mea."

"If you wish to persuade me, you must think my thoughts, feel my feelings, and speak my words." Marcus Tullius cicero, 106 - 43 B.C.

So. Being customer-centric isn't such a new idea after all. More than two thousand years ago, cicero nutshelled it for us. If you want to connect with your prospect, the key is empathy.

Can you see the world from your customer's perspective?

Do you care what's causing your client's pain? Can you articulate it--in their words? Show that you understand what makes them tick, what makes them successful and what makes them fail. This wins hearts and minds and wallets.

Can you talk about your solution from their point of view?

And better still, in their words? What's in it for them? Why should they care? (Hint: talking about yourself doesn't make the connection. "We provide the best widgets..." or "We've manufactured widgets for more than 50 years..." isn't their point of view. It's yours.)

Are you using professional jargon in an attempt to sound impressive and knowledgeable? It doesn't work. Speed of understanding is key. If they can't understand you quickly, and in their words, you increase your chances of losing them.

Cicero's advice is is a good benchmark to measure your communications against. Just ask yourself if you've been as persuasive as possible. Have you thought your client's thoughts? Felt their feelings? Spoken their words? If so, great job! Throw yourself a toga party!

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