Using Values Elicitation as a Persuasive Technique

Rintu BasuCase Study2 Comments

In the Advanced Persuasion Patterns Programme we talk about eliciting values and then linking your product or service to those values as a way to sell.

Persuasion Skills on the Telephone

A few weeks ago we did a mini-seriesseries on Tim using NLP Questions on the telephone.

As a result of that series Geraint emailed an excellent explanation and process for Tim to be able to use a values elicitation in the context of Tim’s cold calls. Reading through Geriant’s response will give you an exact process for eliciting and feeding back a person’s values in a sales context.

Free places on Persuasion Skills Courses

Geriant’s response was so good that I have offered Geriant a place on the Advanced Persuasion Patterns programme free of charge.

Values Elicitation and Utilisation

There is nothing I need to add or clarify about Geriant’s reply so here it is in full.

Geriant’s Email

Received: 11.04 Tuesday 5th May

From: Geriant

Hi Rintu

It’s Geraint again.

Funnily enough I was reading this post just last night so am I ahead of the curve or psychic or telepathic or none of the above and just fortunate to have found your site in the first instance many moons ago? I think I was fortunate. Anyway, to the point of this email.

I have cut and pasted all of the email that Tim sent you regarding his problem and below it I have posted ‘what I would probably do’. Easy to say when you are sat in front of a computer but that is not the point that I am making but because the point I want to make is if you practice this set of questions then it will become second nature and then you will see, hear and feel the rewards that come from the responses you have elicited.

Received: Saturday 24th April 8.47
Hi Rintu,

I’ve been back to your site over the past couple of days and rediscovered my motivation. I lost my focus in NLP for a while because of my job: I sell property for a living in NZ and as you can imagine, in this market my main concern has been keeping my head above water. Actually it’s been a bit of a losing battle. But I’m defiant by nature and dislike defeat. So I’m hanging in.

Which brings me to my point: I read your post about John (The Ultimate Persuasion Techniques ... Rintu) and it got me thinking about how I can turn cold calls into a listing – ie. call someone I don’t know and by the end of the call have them seriously consider selling their property.As an aside, I do many cold calls and actually quite enjoy it because I often end up having very enjoyable conversations. In fact my biggest problem is that I end up talking about them, their family, and what they’ve done and I don’t get to control the conversation back to property.

So I build rapport but the cost is I lose control.

But John and his dilemma and your suggestions got me thinking about a way to regain control. Up till now when I called someone I’d introduce myself then say, “it’s a follow-up phone call to material that you’ve (i.e. them) found in your letter-box to find out if you’ve (i.e. them) had any thoughts at all about [slight pause at this point] perhaps [another slight pause at this point] putting your property on the market”. Usually they say “no, we don’t want to sell” and I then get in quick to start up a conversation in the hope of something coming out of it.

I’ll still keep this initial approach because I usually get some conversation going. But I’m now going to tack on something new: I’m going to draw attention to the future. Up until now my cold call conversations have always focused on the present and the past. This may sound bizarre but I’ve only just come to the realisation that I can take back control of the conversation by talking about the future.

So I’ve just developed a couple of new questions I’m going to try during the conversation. My new questions are: “lets assume you’re still in your home for many years to come and if you had the choice right now what would it be that you’d change or modify about your home?” And after they answer I’ll acknowledge it before replying, “what would it be like to not have to do all those changes and modifications because they were already there?”
I still need to work out a question to get them to re-focus from their own home onto the next step of seriously considering selling to be able to get what they want rather than make do with what they’ve already got.

Rintu, if you have any suggestions or you can see any improvements I can make, I’d appreciate them.

What is the next question?

Many years ago I was taught to ask Why? for at least three times although I wasn’t altogether comfortable with this as, however, I tried to do it it always felt like I was conducting an inquisition and being too direct and perhaps a little impertinent. That said there are plenty of occasions when asking Why? 3 times in a row is perfectly correct and it is situation dependent.

A softer and more subtle way of getting to the same place i.e. the core fundamental emotional reason and eliciting their values is the following question that I now use almost without fail.

What is important to you about ………………… (the reason that you just gave to me)?

eg in Tim’s cold call the elicited response might be ‘Well, we would really love to have an en-suite for our bedroom.’

Tim: So, what is important to you about having the ensuite?

Responder: The kids are getting older and we need our privacy.

Tim: That’s great and I feel from what you have just told me that that is very important to you, isn’t it? (Wait for confirmation of tag question) So, what is really important about needing your privacy?

Responder: Its just that as the kids are getting older they are using the bathroom for longer in the morning and the time pressure is getting out of hand so I think that the en suite is a real necessity for us right now.

Tim: Yes, I can see how the kids hogging the bathroom in the morning could create a whole host of problems for you and it is causing a lot of stress for you in the morning, isn’t it? (Wait for confirmation of tag question) So, what is important to you about solving the problem that is causing you so much stress in the morning?

Responder: You see, the wife and I, before the kids came along, used to enjoy doing it over the bathroom sink and I would like to do that again but with 3 kids wanting to use the bathroom in the morning we are finding it impossible.

Tim: I can see where you are probably coming from and what is important to you and your wife about being able to do that?

Responder: You see, Tim, it helps with my stress. But, now.I can’t even reduce my stress and I am getting even more stress because a) I can’t unload the stress and b) that is causing me more stress.
(Now lead them with the ‘important’ line of questioning and tag it to get further confirmation.

Tim: So, it is very important to you to have an ensuite bathroom in your home, ins’t it?

Responder: Bloody right it is.

Tim: So, how important is it that I help you to find a property that fits in with your lifestyle and your desires and wants so you can reduce your stress levels? Await response. Yes, I think that it is very important to you, isn’t it?

Responder: Yes it is.

Tim: So, if I am right, what you are saying is that you would like to have an en suite for the reasons that you have pointed out not least of all because of the stress it is causing you but that isn’t the real issue the real issue here is that your house might not be suitable for the purposes that your family want to use it for so, what is important here is that perhaps we start to list your property for sale and in the meanwhile I start looking for suitable properties for you to view that have en suite facilities and then you can relax and be stress free. Wouldn’t you agree that that would be the correct course of action?

Result: House gets listed and possibly two commissions earned from one phone call and that isn’t the issue because the real issue is that Tim will now learn how to use this technique on an unconscious level and become masterful at getting new listings which will result in more money for him.



Advanced Persuasion Patterns

Using values to motivate and persuade people is a very powerful technique. There are a number of ways of doing this including the powerful example Geraint demonstrates above. If you want to not only learn the tools but also develop the mindset to create patterns like this then the easiest place to learn is through the Advanced Persuasion Patterns Programme. You can click through and find out more here.









2 Comments on “Using Values Elicitation as a Persuasive Technique”

  1. Luther Ross

    I like the pattern and the the fact that through questioning you lead the client to your end. My one question is about the middle of the pattern, Is the repetion necessary or can you stream line the process by stopping the requestioning?

    1. Rintu Basu

      Hi Luther,
      I can see how you might see this as repetition and the reality is this is really drilling down into their values. You values are context dependent and arranged in a hierarchy. In the example above the first time the question is asked it is about a relatively low level issue and the second time it is about a more important issue. The second set of responses are at a deeper level and will probably have more leverage. So in answer to your question you can do this just the once and run with the responses that you get but doing this several times through different contexts or getting to deeper levels of values has advantages. The best answer is to calibrate on your prospect and the situation and just ask it enough times to get the result.

      Hope that helps


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