Rikin Patel of Whitehall is a pharmacy owner who minored in business in college.
Fundamentally, there are three ways to sell something to someone. These three ways are the push approach, the pursuit approach, and the attraction approach.
The Push Approach
The push approach is the approach of big grocery stores. All the aisles are designed in such a way that customers keep bumping into products. Products are grouped into categories and segments in such a way that the customer is likely to spend more money. Even if you can restrain yourself from buying something that you don’t need, your kids will probably bump into something, too, reach for it, grab it, and ask you to buy it. The shelves by the cash register are usually a maze of impulse purchases with very high margins that people were not looking for, but buy them because they stare at them while they wait in line.
The Pursuit Approach
The pursuit approach is the most commonly used approach in selling. This is the approach of a sales person that comes to you in a store and asks you if you need help. The problem with the pursuit approach is that most people tend to run away, figuratively or literally, when they realize that they are being pursued. You may simply leave a store or a car dealership if you feel annoyed by all the unwanted attention that you are getting, or you may unsubscribe from emails that try to sell you something ten times a day.
This approach is often uncomfortable not only for the prospect but also for the salesperson and that’s the biggest problem with it.
For example, in the financial services niche only about ten percent of interested, qualified prospects show up to a live seminar when they learn about one. The other ninety percent have an interest, know that they need to do something about their financial situation, but don’t come to a seminar because they anticipate the pursuit selling approach and want to avoid it.
The Attraction Approach
The attraction approach is the third approach to selling. This is the approach used by Apple and some of the other highly successful companies in the world. People watch Apple keynote presentations and line up in front of the Apple stores to buy the newest products not because somebody is pushing them or chasing them. They do so because they are attracted to the products and the company that they are buying from. This approach focuses on prospects and customers discovering products or services that satisfy their needs or wants. When a prospect or customer makes the discovery, he or she starts moving towards a buying decision. This approach changes the entire positioning and the nature of relationships between businesses and customers.
Customers no longer feel like they are being chased or taken advantage of. They make buying decisions that they enjoy and come back to businesses like the pharmacy of Rikin Patel Whitehall because they want more.