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Fear: A Powerful and Normal Sentiment

As we have seen at the beginning of the selling journey, the key difference between a professional buyer and a customer is the capacity (I should say necessity) to define their purchase specifications. Luxury-seeking customers do not shop professionally. Their desires have to be clarified with the assistance of the sales advisor.

The reasons for not buying are always linked to fear. Such fear is very much anchored deeply in our soul, body and behavior. Fear is good: it is part of our survival instinct. It also dictates our social experience: how we are raised in the family environment and our educational environment.

- Fear of making a mistake

Peter: “It’s a new brand: you can never be sure about the future. I am

really not sure if I shall commit to a new brand like yours.”

The main reason for this is the fear of making a mistake. And this fear is deeply and fundamentally entrenched: parents ask children to do the right thing—and bring in needed adjustments where necessary. And teachers are there to prevent children from making too many mistakes, and correct them when needed.

- Fear of disappointment

Mr. Taylor: “I want to be sure that my wife will not regret this choice.”

The fear of disappointment is also related to the fear of making a mistake but with a social dimension. If I made a mistake that impacts me, it’s less important than a wrong decision that will impact my family and friends.

- Fear that it is “not worth it”

Lisa: “For this price, I am pretty sure I can find a similar bag at a top

prestigious brand!”

This is the financial dimension of the fear. We are all educated and well versed in trading, exchanging. In the school playground we exchanged our possessions against another things, and each time, it had to be worth it. This sentiment is strong. The “worth it or not” feeling is far from being rational; it’s a sentiment that can paralyze.

Table 5.6.A Customers' fears


Objection From Lisa


Wrong brand

"To tell you the truth, I am not at all sure about your brand."


Wrong choice

"Well, it's not exactly what I am looking for."


Too expensive

"Your price looks very high, unless there is a promotional offer?"


Wrong location, wrong sales advisor

"I might buy it in Milan, because I often go there."


Too early

"It's not very urgent, I can wait."

- Fear of guilt

John: “I am not sure—you know, maybe I should select a more entry-level

option. We still have children with over 10 years of educational needs to pay for!”

Guilt is a generous sentiment. Customers might feel guilty for spending a large amount of money on themselves.

These fears also exist at the 5 decision making motivational factors level and can seriously impact the decision making process (Table 5.6.A):

It is essential that you are able to classify all objections into these 5 fear categories, in order to deal efficiently with the different techniques that we propose.

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