Would you like to know how to get your client involved with your product or service? How would you like to build strong rapport with those clients within minutes? What would you do with the extra time you would have? This is all possible through National Marketing Associates Inc. communications programs. They provide the missing link to sales and management professionals.

The secret to success lies in knowing how to match the way your client thinks to what his/her “home base” of communication is. Their “home base” is classified in one of four different types. If this is Visual, he will like to see things or look at pictures first. If Auditory, he will like to talk to himself or listen to the sound of your words. Kinesthetics use their emotions, intuition, or touch first. Digitals use logic and analysis first.

Now, if you say most people use all of the above four bases to make a decision, you’re right. However, people will have a preference for only one of the above four as their home base. Then, just like baseball, they must touch all four bases to make strong decisions. Every person runs through the four bases internally in their own particular order. They run the bases the same way in making all of their decisions.

For you to get them to make the decision quickly, your presentation needs to follow their four bases in the same order, beginning with their “home base.” The challenge in gaining rapport with anyone quickly is to find out his “home base,” and then tailor your communication to match how he thinks. Failure to do this, on the other hand, will result in friction and loss of rapport.

Visual people will give you constant eye contact. They will sit or stand very erect and will speak extremely fast with an upnote at the end of their words or sentences. They first want pictures and colors and need time to absorb these things before running the rest of the bases to make decisions. You might notice very careful attention to their dress and color coordination. They dislike slow thinkers and shabby dressers. The way to appeal to them is constant eye contact and rapid speech. Use words that describe pictures or looking at something. Match your body and gestures as closely as possible to theirs and keep distance between the two of you.

Auditory people pay close attention to sounds and words. They speak with excellent pronunciation and melody. Their heads will move back and forth while talking. They will sometimes look away to talk and then look back at you. Their bodies will lean forward from the waist and they expect you to carry on a conversation with them. Use words that imply listening or talking and match their body movements and gestures. They are impressed by what others have said or what they have told themselves about you. They dislike slow or monotone talkers and verbally jab them. Talk about music or current events for good results.

Kinesthetic people use feelings as their “home base” and dislike people who talk fast. These people like to have close body contact and touching. They will usually be leaning back comfortably in a chair or be active in playing sports or building things with their hands. Talk slowly and softly with these people and pause often. They appreciate you asking how they feel and will listen closely when you talk about how you feel. They may have little eye contact and might be leaning with their heads or bodies down and to the right side. Many people make the mistake of thinking they are slow thinkers. They arrive at their decisions by using their gut level feelings. Be sure and stress feelings and comfort in selling to them. Use feeling or action words and use your hands a lot.

Digital people always use a monotone voice and talk in the third person. They usually want data or information and have to “think about it.” Most people try to bring them around with emotional statements in the “first person.” This causes them to start asking more trivial questions until you feel like giving up! They’re interested in the most elite things and always must be in control. They do this with people by trying to impress them with facts, data, and numbers. When challenged, they will deny what they have just said. The secret to communicating with these people is to always speak to them with a monotone voice. Keep your body stiff with little motion and discuss things on purely logical terms. Talk about the superiority of the product or service and always use the third person. Compliment their knowledge and never appear weak with them. When in doubt, give them more data to analyze until they overload and shift into a more emotional state.

If the client’s head or eyes move from side to side, they are listening for sounds and words. So you need talk to them about how it sounds. If their heads or bodies lean down to their right sides, they are feeling and you can talk to them about feelings. If the client’s head or body leans down to their left side, they are talking to themselves or analyzing numbers. You can ask them what they are thinking about or if it is logical. It’s important to move your body and head in a similar way as the client does when you talking to them. The order in which they go through these changes will give you a good idea of how they make decisions. If you present your ideas or products to them by following their natural order, they will find your presentation easy to understand and make their decision faster.

WARNING: If you force people to make decisions by running the bases YOUR way, unless it naturally matches their own, you will cause them to resist you and postpone decision making.

What if you can’t read eye movements and you still want to carry on your presentation? Just relax, taking the time to match the client’s body position, voice tone and speed with yours. You will get him to feel comfortable with you within one minute.

Adapt your communication to take advantage of the natural way clients run the bases, and add the right words for them. What features and benefits would appeal to each one of the four bases?

Aside from saving time on presentations and making people like you much more quickly, where else would you use these skills? How about with your family, friends, lover, or even to get better service on your car or at a restaurant? Have fun with it! The only thing you will lose is the tension from communicating in the old way and having people resist you.

Thomas Caddy is the president of National Marketing Associates, Inc. in Portland, Oregon. He conducts Communication Skills Seminars for negotiators and professionals in sales, management, and telemarketing.

For further information on training programs or speaking engagements, contact us .