A guest article by Yvan de Canson, content marketer at Salesbox
Being able to identify the natural behavior of your leads and adapt to it is one of the most useful skills you can develop when selling. Because selling in the end is all about building trust and truly connecting with someone.
In this article we will talk about the DiSC method, a method that will help you to identify the natural behavior of your leads and adapt to it. This method fits particularly well with Sales because of its simplicity in allowing you to take quick decisions; an important factor in the difficult Art of Selling. If you know the DiSC method, your closing, your lead generation, and your lead qualification will be more efficient.
The basics of the DiSC profiling method
First, let’s talk a little bit about the DiSC profiling method so you can have a clear understanding of what are its benefits.
The DiSC profiling method is used to analyze people’s natural behavior. It is based on the research studies of William Marston, an american psychologist at Harvard during the 1930’s. It’s a non-judgmental method which seeks only to describe the different types of behavior you can observe among people.
The conclusion of William Marston’s model is that there are four different types of behavior (D, I, S, C) and that everyone’s attitude exhibits a mix of them.
The DiSC method’s ultimate goal is to describe the natural behavior a person will adopt when confronted with a situation. Therefore, it’s based on two questions that everyone asks themselves subconsciously when any situation appears:
- Are the surroundings naturally friendly or unfriendly ?
- Do I feel stronger or weaker than the environment ?
Some people will always see the environment as hostile and others will naturally think that the surroundings are friendly. The same applies to the degree of control and influence on the surroundings.
Some people will naturally feel they have a tight control on the situation and others will instinctively feel the opposite. This natural feeling is not directly related with reality. It is more like an instinct and neither one is good or bad.
Based on the answers of these two questions the DiSC model separates behaviors into four different groups (D,I,S,C). Going further, each type is enriched with a color as well (Red, Yellow, Green, Blue).
Everyone is a combination of these different behaviors but what distinguishes us is our dominant type and the percentage of each one in our unique mix.
Dominant Style (RED) : This is the style that describes people’s behavior when they feel stronger than a hostile environment. They want to overcome obstacles in order to achieve their goals. They are challenge-driven and do not fear taking some risks and changing if they think it can help them because of their strong self-confidence.
Influential Style (YELLOW): This the behavior people adopt when they feel being in a friendly environment they can control at wish. Therefore I-Style behaviorists are looking to influence their surroundings through friendly persuasion; they want to be involved and accepted by others.
Steady Style (GREEN) : This behavioral style is adopted by someone who feels being in a friendly environment he or she can’t really control. That is why the primary goal of a GREEN person is to maintain good relationships with others and don’t do anything that can lead to the transformation of the friendly surroundings in a hostile environment.
Consciousness Style (BLUE) : People will adopt this behavioral style when they feel weaker than a naturally hostile environment. People with C-style behavior will try to protect themselve by using pre-existing rules and structures. They will try to do the “correct” thing and minimize the risks of making mistakes so that nobody can point an accusing finger at them.
How can the DiSC profiling method help you with your leads?
The DiSC profiling method will help you closing deals.
The first and direct benefit of the DiSC method on your Sales is your better ability to identify the natural behavior of your potential customers and adapt to it (communication, body language, writings etc.). That will help you to close deals more easily because your one-to-one communication will be more close to your lead’s preferred communication style (mirror your customer).
First, what is at stake is your ability to identify the DiSC color of your lead. To do that you can use the O.A.R method (Observe, Asses Recognize) that we will describe in one of our next articles.
Then knowing the behavior style of your lead you will be able to pick the right argument that will resonate in your prospects’ minds.
For example a BLUE person will pay more attention to facts and data in order to make the “correct” decision. You should be able to prove any points of your speech. On the other hand, YELLOW type will be more focused on what other people will think about them if they buy your products. Therefore, you should insist on previous successful clients that you know your I-Style prospect will value.
Finally, you will be able to say your argument with the appropriate tone, rhythm and through the relevant canals. For example, a D-Style will appreciate short, straight to the point emails that won’t waste their time. On the contrary, a S-Style will appreciate a warm phone call because they want to see if they can trust you before making any deals.
The take-away is that the DiSC profiling method will make it easier to connect and build trust with a prospect because you will know his natural behavior and adapt to it. Eventually, it will be easier to close deals.
The DiSC model will make your lead generation and lead qualification more efficient.
The more you can identify people’s natural behavior, the more you become efficient when selling. The first reason is that you can identify your own natural behavior. You can tell what are your strengths, your weaknesses, which type of behavior your feel comfortable with and which not.
It’s always easier to deal with people of your own dominant behavior since the interaction is natural.
Your lead qualification is easier because you are able to say quite quickly if a prospect will be a good fit for you or not. If you identify a lead with a behavior which suits you, that you can adopt naturally, then you can proceed but if not you won’t loose time and energy and maybe pass it to one of your colleagues. If you don’t have a suitable colleague then you can adopt your communication to suit the behaviour of your lead. It is crucial to mirror your customer and make them feel “at home” and trust you.
After a while selling your product or service you will most likely be able to detect certain patterns among your best customers. Maybe you will see that 50% of them have a D-Style and therefore you can use the DiSC model in a more proactive way for your lead generation.
You can add a DiSC colors to your Target Customer Profile and try to adapt your overall communication to it. That is to say your website (landing page), your content (blog, posts), etc…
You can even use a CRM, such as Salesbox, to send custom email marketing campaigns in function of each DiSC colors and increase your open rate. Salesbox also comes packaged with the possibility to add the correct DiSC-color to each lead or existing business contact, to make it easier for colleagues (managers, other sales reps, pre-sales, support, delivery, finance) to know how to communicate correctly with the lead/customer.
All of this will make your lead generation more efficient. The DiSC model, as we just saw, is a brilliant behavioral model that will make you more efficient as a sales representative. But on the top of that, the DiSC model can be used in various domains where behavior matters. For example it can help you to be a better manager : it’s easier to motivate someone if you know what triggers him/her. It can also help you in your recruitment process in order to determine if the behavior of a candidate will probably fit or not with his/her potential manager’s.
So, you see there is plenty application for the DiSC model within Sales and Business and if you want to dig more you can visit our blog: Salesbox Blog.
Yvan de Canson
Content Marketer at Salesbox