In general, people prefer to interact with others with whom they feel an affinity. When people are in sync they fall into a subconscious pattern of mirroring and matching each other’s movements. A face-to-face marketer can use that natural tendency to build quick, easy rapport with the person they’re speaking to giving the customer a better chance of feeling comfortable with the sales person.
When you mirror the person you’re speaking with, you’re giving their subconscious the impression that you and they are similar. They subconsciously admire those people and will be more inclined to give them more of their attention and for longer stretches at a time. If you are going to try mirroring to get in sync with people, you have to be aware, there’s a fine balance to it. Mirroring has to be subtle enough that the person simply feels comfortable and acknowledged in your presence. Go too far and they will feel like you’re mocking or mimicking them.
Mirroring in a conversation with a stranger involves matching their body language, the volume with which you speak, and the speed of your words. If the person you’re speaking with puts a hand in his or her pocket, then after a reasonable amount of time, ten or fifteen seconds, you too can put your hand in your pocket, as if you are taking your cues from them.
Try paying attention to the cadence of their speech as they talk, then fall in with their mode and rhythm of speech. Matching the cadence will establish a pace for your communication that matches theirs and will increase their level of comfort.
If they use their hand as the talk then feel free to speak more with your hands. If they’re quiet speakers then you too can quiet down the tone of your voice.
Remember so much of what we communicate has nothing to do with words. Body language, tone of voice or rhythm of speech may just be the determining factors of your next sale! So pay attention to people as you talk to them throughout the day and take note what others are saying overall rather than simply with their words.
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