What Makes People Buy?

Let’s explore what makes people buy. Marketing is the key to success; as business owners, we understand that. 

Whether you’re a small business, a coach or consultant, or an offline retail shop, you need to market your products and services to sell.

But it’s hard to know what will work for your business when so many marketing strategies and tactics exist. 

Here at Humane Marketing, we share a fresh perspective on what makes people buy in the 21st century and don’t shy away from calling things out that no longer work for the conscious client. 

Today’s client doesn’t want to be sold to; instead, he wants to be heard, seen and understood. 

First, look at the following principles of a buyer/seller relationship.

What Makes People Buy? By Sarah Santacroce of Humane Marketing

People Buy What’s Valuable to Them

When we talk about value, it’s not about how much someone receives but rather how important or useful our product is to them. 

We must look at it from the perspective of our clients: 

  • What are their wants and needs?
  • What are they experiencing now?
  • How can you help them? 

Once you’ve identified these things, putting them front and center in your marketing efforts is essential.

The main thing to remember here is that your focus needs to be on the client, not your product or service. 

Your clients will only find your products and services of value when they are dissatisfied with how things are right now. 

They will only buy when they see a compelling vision of what is possible.

But they must be open to change and willing to overcome their resistance to buying.

People Buy People

An often-used phrase in the service business is that people buy people; it focuses on the fact that people make buying decisions not only with their heads but also with their hearts. 

In other words, people buy from people they know, like and trust. 

It goes even further than that: today’s conscious client doesn’t just buy ‘stuff’; they buy into your worldview, your values and what you stand for.

For example, members of the Humane Marketing Circle stand for humane, kind and gentle marketing. They learn and teach each other, and their world views are reflected in their marketing. 

Humane Marketers figure out together what works – and what works for them because they have the same values and worldview.

They are part of the Humane Marketing Revolution.

Humane Ways to Encourage People to Buy from You

We’ve established that people buy from people they know, like and trust. But how do we encourage them to buy from us?

To help people buy, we take them on a journey. And on this journey, we tell them our story as well as the stories of our clients.

Tell Better Stories

Stories are little engines of belief
– Dominic Souza.

In order to get people to buy into your worldview, you need to tell them stories. 

Stories about you, your experience, and your client’s experiences, not facts and figures about your products and services. 

They don’t need to be the typical hero stories, either. 

In fact, I believe that today’s conscious client is tired of the ‘hero’s journey’. Instead, they want stories that they can relate to.

Listen to this episode of the Humane Marketing podcast on the topic ‘Finding Your Core Story and Your Superpowers’.

Samples Help People to Buy from You

The real customer-centric client journey is not your typical sales funnel where speed is of utmost importance. 

Instead, we suggest you invite your clients on a Gentle Sales Path (that’s how we renamed the ‘Sales Funnel’ here at Humane.Marketing) that empowers the client to make their own buying decision.

They can experience this journey at their own pace while discovering some free samples (we call them signposts) on the way.

Samples like ebooks, blog posts, podcast episodes, presentations, books etc., help you build a relationship with your prospects and eventually makes the right people buy from you.

Reviews Help the Buyer Journey

A study by Econsultancy found that 60% of people will buy something based on an existing review. 

Reviews are a great way to get new customers. Encourage your current and past clients to give you reviews.

You could post some on your website. Don’t forget that people like pictures, so ideally, always post a headshot of your clients with the review. 

Reviews are typically brief and are intended to provide other potential clients with a general overview of the product or service.

Ask your customers to write reviews on your Google Business Profile and Facebook page. Social reviews are valuable because you can’t fake them so easily. Build credibility with them, helping people feel confident in buying.

Search engines recognise social reviews and rank businesses higher when they have an abundance of solid reviews from real people.

Whenever you ask your client for a review, make it easy for them; always provide direct links to the places you’d like them to write.

Case-Studies to Help People Make a Purchase Decision

Create full case studies and explain with context how your product or service helped your client get from A to Z.

A case study is a detailed analysis of a specific product or service. 

Case studies often include in-depth information about the client’s background, challenges, and objectives, as well as the strategies and tactics used to address these issues and achieve specific goals. 

Case studies are typically more detailed and comprehensive than reviews.

Here’s an example case study of one of the participants of the Marketing Like We’re Human program.

The Truth Makes People Buy

It goes without saying that the Humane Marketer is truthful while using client reviews, testimonials and case studies.

For example: if you get a testimonial from a client for one type of service or level of support, you can’t simply use it for all your other services.

Why? Because a VIP client receives more support than a group program client and it’s therefore misleading to use the VIP client case study as an example for the group program – unless you clearly say so.

Selling Like We’re Human

All of my strategies are great, but none matter unless you implement them in a human(e) way.

Focus on building relationships with your customers, show them that you care, and be helpful and human every step of the way – even before they buy.

And maybe, just maybe, before you ask, ‘what makes people buy?’ you need to start with yourself: 

  • Your sales mindset.
  • Your attitude towards sales.
  • Your own worth.
  • Your confidence. 

Start the process to help you to feel really grounded in your human BEING so that you can have sales conversations from a place of worthiness. 

Your innate worth is not dependent on sales or sign-ups. No one can take it from you or give you more of it. 

In plain English: you’re not a failure if people don’t buy your stuff. Your worth is innate. You’re good enough!

When you start selling from this new perspective – knowing that you’re good enough, whether you make that sale or not, that’s when things will change for you. 

If you’d like to learn more about ‘Selling Like We’re Human’, check out my bestselling book with the same title – or start by downloading the first chapter for free.

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Other Resources You Might Enjoy

The Humane Marketing Circle, our community of Humane Marketers

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The 7Ps of Humane Marketing

Get the Fill In the Blank One-Page Marketing Plan

Humane Marketing 7ps

Your contact information is safe, and will not be used in ways
other than stated on this page.