Unlimited Selling Power: How to Master Hypnotic Skills

Unlimited Selling Power: How to Master Hypnotic Skills

by Donald Moine, Kenneth Lloyd

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Provides salespeople with information on hypnotic techniques and how to use them in sales presentations and script books to win the customer's trust and make sales.  See more details below


Provides salespeople with information on hypnotic techniques and how to use them in sales presentations and script books to win the customer's trust and make sales.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
The authors of this work believe top salespeople can be developed by applying the principles of hypnosis to sales presentations. They give a brief history of hypnosis and describe how it has been used in the counseling professions. They then show how the same techniques of trust building, wording, voice tone, and delivery can be applied to sales situations. Although this may sound like some shady sales gimmick, it is actually very good advice on the art of persuasion. Less general in approach and more technique-oriented than Kathy Aaronson's Selling on the Fast Track ( LJ 5/15/89), this is recommended for larger libraries or those with large sales collections.-- Robert Logsdon, Indiana State Lib., Indianapolis

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Read an Excerpt

Unveiling The Best-Kept Secret Of Sales Superstars

It is an indisputable fact that top salespeople use forms of indirect or conversational hypnosis to command attention, build trust, garner respect and confidence, to create unforgettable impressions and to close sales. No one can argue with this fact.

University researchers have studied forms of conversational hypnosis for years. Studies of sales superstars have conclusively shown that they extensively use this powerful form of human communication.

Linguists are professionals who specialize in the study of how human beings use language. If anyone understands how the spoken word affects perception and thinking, it is linguists. Their research has shown that top salespeople and top negotiators and skilled attorneys all use similar forms of indirect hypnosis.

With all of the years of research that has been done, with all of the technical reports that have been published, with all of the indisputable proof we have that highly persuasive people do use conversational hypnosis, why is this finding so little understood and so shocking to the average person? Why have these techniques been kept secret?

The notion of using hypnosis as part of the sales process brings to mind images of unwary customers being tricked into buying products that they don’t need and can’t afford. It brings to mind the image of a salesman slowly waving a gold Cross pen in front of the prospect, back and forth, back and forth, until the prospect’s eyes glass over, and his hand slowly reaches out for the pen and signs the order.

The above scenario is exactly what this book is not about. And, it is exactly what sales hypnosis is not about.

Keys that Unlock the Secret of Hypnotic Selling

Scientific studies of sales superstars have been conducted on elite salespeople who earn in excess of $100,000 per year in personal income. In our own studies, which were inaugurated in 1978, we have interviewed, traveled with, worked with and tape-recorded a wide variety of salespeople—ranging from those who are flat broke to those who earn over $800,000 a year in personal income. Many of these sales champions cannot explain how they do what they do.

THUS, ONE OF THE REASONS THAT SALES HYPNOSIS HAS NOT BEEN TAUGHT PREVIOUSLY IS THAT THE PEOPLE WHO PRACTICED IT COULD NOT THEMSELVES EXPLAIN HOW IT OPERATED. They could do sales hypnosis, but they didn’t have the tools to break it down and teach it to others. Apparently, asking masters in the art of sales hypnosis to also be great teachers was akin to asking great athletes to also be great coaches. A great idea, but it is seldom realized.

The job was left to scientific researchers to discover the structure of sales hypnosis. The researchers found that highly successful salespeople use communication techniques which are nearly identical in structure to the communication techniques used by hypnotists.

The purpose of this book is to explain, for the first time, how sales superstars achieve results that are unattainable by average salespeople. In learning about sales hypnosis, you will discover that this powerful form of communication is ethical and, in fact, humanistic. You will learn many hypnotic sales techniques which will allow you to help an even greater number of people by being an even more effective sales professional.

Let’s now remove the veil of secrecy that has previously surrounded conversational hypnosis. Let’s learn how almost everyone can benefit from using these unique forms of human communication.

Getting Beyond Popular Conceptions and Misconceptions about Hypnosis

The proper place to start is to explain exactly what hypnosis is and what it isn’t. As one of the most misunderstood of all human communication processes, hypnosis has been an easy target for sensationalism in movies and on television. Hypnosis has the power to both fascinate and frighten. There are still many well-educated people who erroneously believe that hypnosis is some form of “sleep.” While some people use hypnosis as an entertainment medium, the most widespread use of hypnosis today is in psychotherapy and counseling. Look under the “H” listings in your local telephone advertising directory to verify that almost every city and town in America now has hypnotists working in private practice. They use hypnosis in everything from helping people lose weight, helping them stop smoking, for stress reduction, and in marriage counseling and psychotherapy. Hypnosis is also used by many dentists for pain control. Someone who is allergic to anesthesia can be hypnotized prior to dental work to block all perceptions of pain.

The most recently discovered area for the application of hypnosis is business, management and sales. Of these, the specialization experiencing the greatest growth is sales hypnosis. This is the first book about the exciting and rapidly growing field of sales hypnosis.

The experts still disagree about the one “perfect” definition of hypnosis. However, there is little disagreement about its key components. Many of the key components of hypnotic language, you might be surprised to learn, occur naturally in everyday life.

The best way to understand hypnosis is to look at it as a state of greatly increased suggestibility. That is, the hypnotized person is far more susceptible to influence by messages and images. Have you been looking for methods to increase your ability to influence others? If so, you will find that hypnosis has many of the techniques you’ve been seeking.

Recognizing Hypnosis as a Part of Everyday Life

There are different levels of hypnosis which you can observe everyday in your friends and business associates. In light hypnosis, your body may feel relaxed and you might be aware of “day-dreaming.” Anyone who is capable of concentrating for a few minutes can easily enter this state. Light hypnosis is a wonderful altered state of awareness for programming your mind so that you can achieve higher levels of success and have more focused energy.

People who are in a medium-level hypnotic state are not distracted by outside disturbances, and may also have a semi-glazed or unfocused look in their eyes. They may be reading a book or pushing a grocery cart and not even respond to a loud noise a few feet away. Medium-level hypnotic states can also be accompanied by very deep levels of relaxation, or a complete lack of awareness of the body.

In the deepest levels of hypnosis, you may not even be able to remember what has happened during hypnosis. You may have what is known as “hypnotic amnesia.” In the deepest levels of hypnosis, the powers of the human imagination are greatly increased. At this level of hypnosis, if a person is given an onion and if that person is told it is a delicious apple, he will eat it as if it were an apple. Root canals, amputations and other operations have been performed on people using only deep hypnosis as the anesthesia. Physical strength can also be significantly increased. Many Olympic-calibre weight lifters and marathon runners use self-hypnosis to increase their abilities to perform and to decrease the perception of pain. While deep hypnosis, or trance hypnosis, is a fascinating subject to study, there is seldom, if ever, any need for this level of hypnosis in sales.

Hypnosis is a constantly changing and fluid state. Within five minutes, you or a customer might momentarily drop to a deep level of hypnosis, relive a pleasant memory or association, then rise to a light hypnosis, engage in some conversation, and then drop to a medium level of hypnosis. If you have ever listened to a sales professional, fallen in love with a product, bought it, and then not remembered why you bought it, you were probably in and out of two or more different levels of hypnosis.

There is no conflict between hypnosis and reason. That is, you or one of your customers can be both highly rational and can also be in a hypnotic state. The hypnosis may trigger the powers of the imagination, but it will not overrule logic and reason. You cannot, for example, hypnotize someone and tell them to commit murder. It won’t happen. You can’t and wouldn’t want to hypnotize someone and tell them to buy a product they don’t want or need. They won’t buy it.

However, if someone does want a product and does need it, hypnosis will give you an extra edge in selling it. It is the edge that sales superstars have had for many, many years—and now you can learn how it is done.

When you communicate a message hypnotically, that message is more likely to bypass the listener’s conscious defenses. The hypnotic message goes more directly to the prospect’s subconscious mind. Communications researchers have found that there are four distinct ways of sending these messages or suggestions, and these are explained in the following section.

Four Ways to Send Practically Irresistible Suggestions

When people use Verbal Suggestions, they use words in a very direct fashion to make suggestions. While this form of suggestion is the most commonly used, it is not necessarily the most powerful. Let’s look at some examples from classical hypnosis, from everyday life, and from sales. From classical hypnosis:

“Your eyelids are getting heavy and you are beginning to feel sleepy . . .”

From everyday life: “You are going to love this meal!”

From sales hypnosis: “You are going to be very excited about what this computer can do!”

While the content of these verbal suggestions is quite different, the structure is the same. These suggestions set up expectations. They work because people get what they think they are going to get out of an experience. They work because thoughts can become self-fulfilling prophecies. If someone thinks they will like something, chances are they will like it. If they doubt they will like it, chances are they won’t like it.

The choice of words and the ordering of words in verbal suggestions has the power to change the way people think. Napoleon said, “We rule men with words.” In an upcoming chapter on Sales Scripting, you will learn how to script nearly irresistible sales presentations. The scripting of important presentations is now being done on a widespread basis by people in many different professions (including lawyers), and nowadays even our President is scripted before every major speech.

To be successful in sales, it is essential to understand the psychology of verbal suggestion. Verbal suggestion is what gives you the power to influence how a customer or prospect thinks. You earn your living based on your powers of verbal suggestion. As you will see, the suggestions that sales superstars make are planted in an elegant and nearly invisible way. Customers end up with the feeling that, “It was my idea to buy this! I wasn’t sold anything—I bought it!”

If delivered with enthusiasm and sincerity, the verbal suggestion gains even more power. While the words you use in verbal suggestions are crucial, they are not the entire picture. Presentation style is also vital. In the coming chapters, you will learn verbal presentation techniques to add hypnotic impact to nearly all of your messages.

Why isn’t direct suggestion more powerful? Because its content is easily recognizable. Direct suggestions are the kind of suggestions most salespeople make—and they are the kind of suggestions customers have the most defenses against. Prospects and customers develop a variety of sophisticated filters which screen out many forms of direct suggestion. The other forms of suggestion that you will learn about here by-pass the majority of filters that customers possess. Filters are by-passed because these other forms of suggestion seem almost “invisible” on the surface. Yet, on the subconscious or subliminal level, they have a tremendous positive impact.

The second type of suggestion is Non-Verbal. Selected gestures and facial expressions add hypnotic impact and emphasis to messages. For example, when you watch a skilled actor in a fascinating film, you can become almost completely mesmerized by the performance. You lose all perception of time. Before you know it, another half-hour has gone by. You may even lose awareness of your body, and your foot or your leg may fall asleep. You entered a hypnotic state of deeply focused attention and heightened suggestibility. Non-verbal suggestion is a tool used by both skilled actors and top salespeople.

One very powerful way of using non-verbal suggestion is to match or mirror the body language of your customer. We all trust people like ourselves, and by matching your customer’s body language, you are sending a message of “I am like you are.” This subconsciously increases the customer’s comfort level and decreases his or her resistance. On a subliminal level, the customer feels in harmony with you. When you adopt the body language of your customer, you are telling him or her on a non-verbal level that you have something in common.

One of the classic methods of inducing hypnosis, which has been in use for at least one-hundred years, involves having a patient look into a mirror while the hypnotist counts backward and tells stories. When you match or mirror a customer’s body language, you are sending back a hypnotic mirror image to that customer. Many customers look for differences in salespeople. They avoid buying by telling themselves, “The salesman is different from me. He is trying to sell me something.” When the salesperson appears to be very similar to the customer, by matching body language and movements on a subliminal level, that salesperson is more trusted and is harder to resist. Psychological research tells us that people cannot resist themselves or their own actions.

Besides matching or mirroring body language, you can induce hypnosis with your smile. The smile works by sending a powerful non-verbal message of “Let’s be friends,” and “Let’s get closer.” Sonny Salkind, one of the top real estate salesmen in America, has a wonderful, warm smile that melts people when they first meet him. Like Sonny, you should remind yourself to use your smile strategically as a form of non-verbal suggestion from the very first moment you meet a prospect or customer.

Intraverbal Suggestions, the third form of suggestion, com from intonations and voice inflections. When a hypnotist uses the word “sleep,” he usually pronounces it in a soft deep voice and extends it out into “sssssssslllllllleeeeeeeeppppppppp.” These special intonations and voice inflections give the word extra power. In the same way, sales professionals turn certain words into action commands by changing the intonations:

“Think of how hhhaaaapppppyyyy your wife will be when you give her this new sports car!”

In this example, a long resonant intonation on the word “happy,” triggers positive feeling in the customer. He has an immediate positive experience of his wife’s happiness. If the salesman just spit the words out, they would have little effect. It is the intraverbal suggestion that gives them all their power. Your voice inflections can actually trigger happiness in the listener in the instant he hears such a suggestion!

The intonations given to a word can change its impact and meaning 180 degrees. A word can send totally opposite messages strictly as a result of intraverbal factors. “No,” depending upon the intonations it is given, can mean “Hell no! Never in a million years!” or it can mean “Maybe.” If it is spoken in a sweet, coy way, the word “No” can mean “Yes, but please ask me again.”

Even the most persuasive words in the world will have little effect if not properly delivered. In this book, you will learn not just how to craft hypnotic messages, but also how to say them.

Extraverbal Suggestions, the fourth type of suggestion, allow one to “speak between the lines.” Extraverbal suggestions are a synergistic combination of words, gestures and intonations. Skillfully arranged, the sum total is much more powerful than the individual units. Extraverbal suggestions can be incredibly powerful because the listener ends up thinking the action was strictly his or her own idea. This works because no one is very good at resisting his own thought processes.

Let’s say you want to get someone to stand up. If you tell him, “Stand up,” using simple direct suggestion, you will probably trigger a critical attitude and resistance. But, if you use the power of extraverbal suggestion and softly ask, “Are you a little tired of sitting down?” he may be standing up within seconds, with no idea that he was influenced! Try this yourself with a friend, and see how easily it works.

This extraverbal suggestion works because there is nothing to resist. It triggers a thought the other person probably already had in his subconscious mind. Your words simply take that subconscious thought and turn it into an action.

Extraverbal suggestion is powerful because, properly delivered, it is “invisible.” It sounds natural and conversational. Extraverbal suggestion can even result in hyper-suggestibility because the listener thinks that all the ideas he is acting on are his own. He engages in action after action because “he thought of it” and because he wants to do what he thought of. In this book, we’ll teach you how to use extraverbal suggestion by combining sales scripts with skillful presentation techniques on how to say those scripts.

How to Profit from the Rich History of Hypnosis

Few people know that hypnosis has been used for thousands of years to influence, persuade and heal human beings. History shows that hypnosis has long been used as a valid tool for changing human attitudes and behaviors. The recent view of hypnosis as a carnival act or entertainment trick is just a brief historical fad, and serious practitioners of hypnosis hope these silly uses of hypnosis quickly fall out of favor.

Temples in ancient Egypt contain engravings showing people in hypnotic trances. Some of the most beautiful engravings show Isis, Nature Goddess of the Nile, using hypnosis. Other fascinating engravings record how the High Priest of Khem used mass hypnosis to calm the hysteria of thousands of citizens!

Chiron was one of the most respected physicians in ancient Greece. An engraving that dates back to almost one-thousand years before the birth of Christ shows Chiron putting his student Aesculapius under hypnosis. The famous Delphic Oracle and all other oracles of that time worked under hypnosis, which was sometimes combined with volcano fumes.

Anthropologists tell us that hypnosis has been used by cultures all over the world for thousands of years. There are numerous documents, paintings, sculptures, books, and engravings, attesting to the pervasive role hypnosis has played in human history. Given this long and distinguished history of hypnosis, it is strange that modern business and sales executives are generally so ignorant of its power and practical uses.

In the 18th century, hypnosis was “discovered” by scientists. Medical doctors found that hypnosis could cure ailments that were resistant to other treatments. In the late 1700s, Frederick Mesmer acquired fame all over Europe for his cures using “animal magnetism.” It is from Mesmer that we get the word “mesmerized.” He moved from the School of Medicine at the University of Vienna to Paris, where thousands of sick and ill people searched him out for cures.

The wealthy and powerful in Paris also sought Mesmer and to have been “mesmerized” was one of the great status-symbols of the day. In order to treat larger and larger numbers of people, Mesmer experimented with other ways of triggering and using “animal magnetism.” He found that he could produce the same results, including outrageous laughter, tears, moans, joy, ecstasy, and medical cures, by using certain gestures of his fingers, touches, words and a steady gaze deep into the eyes of his subjects.

Unfortunately, the sensationalism that accompanied Mesmer’s work led to its becoming a fad. Mesmerism had a long life as a faddish movement but eventually other fads and political events caught the public’s attention. Hypnosis again returned to the scientists and the priests.

In the late 1870s, Dr. Charcot, a neurologist, re-discovered hypnosis. His scientific studies proved there are distinct levels of hypnosis. He documented how hypnosis could be used to induce many different emotional states, from extreme excitement to completely calm detachment to a light, pleasant sleep. Charcot showed how hypnosis could be used to reduce pain and to increase intellectual abilities. His findings were presented to the French Academy of Sciences and then received world-wide acclaim.

Charcot’s work ushered in the new era of scientific hypnosis. Medical doctors, dentists, psychologists and other healing professionals have relied on hypnosis throughout the twentieth century. They see hypnosis as one of the most valuable and powerful tools in existence for changing human thought and behavior. Now, the business community is discovering the power and utility of hypnosis. In the next chapter, you will be introduced to some tools of classic hypnosis that have been used for over two thousand years by politicians, rulers, doctors, priests and healers. Now, for the first time, we’ll show how these hypnotic tools can be used to increase sales.

Using The Tools Of Sales Hypnosis To Build Sales

Most people are surprised to learn that many types of hypnosis occur nearly everyday in ordinary life situations. Learning hypnotic language is therefore not a matter of learning a totally new subject, but is learning how to improve something you’ve been doing for a long time. Let’s look at some examples:

How Hypnotic Selling Builds Trust Quickly

Hypnotic trust: We have all met someone we have liked and trusted almost instantly—without any reason or justification. This is called hypnotic trust. It works because the other person does or says something that reminds yousubconsciously of a person you have trusted or liked for many years. Thus you virtually have to like him or her. Top salespeople intuitively know how to trigger hypnotic trust.

Trust is a key element of all hypnosis because it facilitates hypnosis. Trust elicits a suggestible state of mind by minimizing resistance. We listen to people we trust. We tend to follow their suggestions. Trust gives people power.Trust is perhaps the most powerful communication shortcut in existence. That’s why politicians, psychologists, ministers, lawyers, managers, salespeople and parents are all interested in understanding how trust works.

Stop for a minute and picture one person who is able to persuade you. Do you have the picture? What gives that person his or her power? We will bet that you trust that person at a very deep level. If you didn’t trust that person, your defenses would be up and you’d be much more critical of his or her suggestions.

If you are an honest and reliable person, you can develop trust with almost anyone—given enough time! Think about your neighbors. You might not have liked one of them the first time you saw him. Now, after three years, you have learned he is basically honest and keeps his place looking neat and tidy. He cares about the neighborhood. He is fairly friendly. Now, three years later, you trust him.

In sales, time is limited. Few salespeople have three years to make the sale. The challenge is: How do I build trust as quickly and deeply as possible? Hypnotic techniques described in this book will show you how to build trust much more quickly than you ever dreamed imaginable. Of course, you still have to be honest and reliable, but these hypnotic techniques will greatly speed up the trust building process for you.

Using Common Senses to Increase Sales

Ideosensory trance is another form of hypnosis we experience daily. It is based on our innate abilities to create in our minds visual images, feelings, voices, sounds, and even tastes and smells. When did you engage in ideosensory activities today? When you vividly experienced something that was not going on in “real time.” Some examples: When you imagined what you might have for lunch or dinner, when you imagined what you might do at home tonight, or when you imagined a sales call, or mentally rehearsed what you might say to someone else in the office today. Did you see the expression on his face? Could you hear his words and feel yourself reacting? You were in an ideosensory trance.

Very persuasive individuals can orchestrate vivid images that influence both the perception and mood of the listener. Highly-skilled salespeople use “word magic” to bring their prospects and customers to other worlds of sightsand sounds and feelings.

Let’s give you an example now of how you can use ideosensory trance in your sales work. We’ll use the example of selling cars. As a master automobile salesperson you can make your prospect see a vivid image of himself behind the wheel of a bright red Porsche. You can have him see his neighbors turning their heads to watch him drive down the street. You can have him see his wife smiling proudly as he pulls into the driveway. You can have him smell that new car smell and the smell of those new leather seats. You’ll have him feel the steering wheel in his hands and he’ll feel every little pebble and crack in the road as he races down a deserted country lane. This will all happen before your prospect even gets into the car!

Your prospect will hear the purr of the engine as it effortlessly accelerates up the steepest hill, and later he’ll hear the envious compliments of his friends at the office. As a highly-skilled sales professional, you can create an ideosensory trance that is so vivid and real, your prospect will likely turn into a customer.

One of our goals is to teach you the techniques of sales superstars. Our experience in sales training has taught us that the best way to learn these techniques is to practice them. Throughout this book, we will share examples and case histories with you showing how you can use every technique of hypnotic selling. As you read these examples, such as the previous example of ideosensory trance, look for a way you can practice the technique. By reading about the technique, by studying the example, and then practicing the technique, you will mentally own it. You will then be able to replicate the technique any time you need it.

To master multi-sensory selling, or as we call it, sense-sational selling, practice using multi-sensory words to describe the benefits of your product or service. What benefits will clients see when they own your product? What benefits will they hear (compliments, etc.)? What benefits will they feel? Are there any benefits they will smell ortaste? Now, practice using these persuasive descriptions with your clients and prospects and see how much more fascinating they find your presentations!

You can also use ideosensory trance to trigger negative emotions that will encourage the decision to buy. Let’s say you are selling insurance to the co-owner of a multi-million dollar business. You can use ideosensory trance to have this co-owner realistically imagine what would happen to his business if his partner suddenly passed away. You can have him realistically see himself overwhelmed with work he doesn’t know how to do; you can have him see the business struggling; he can see that there is no money to hire a replacement; and no time to train a replacement. You can have him hear other people expressing their worries, doubts and fears about him and his ability to carry on without his partner. You will have him feel the anxiety and nervousness of not knowing whether or not his business will survive.

This negative hypnotic ideosensory message convinces him of his need for “key man” insurance to protect himself and the business. In fact, you are likely to sell two policies, one to each executive co-owner.

Many of the things we buy are purchased because we have a negative ideosensory image in our mind. We buy not to gain the positive, but to avoid the negative. We buy some things not to look beautiful, but to avoid looking unattractive. We join the health spa, not to look like a model or a muscle man, but to avoid looking flabby. Sometimes, we buy a car, not because we desperately want a new car, but to prevent people from asking us, “Why are you still driving that old car?” We are sold by the negative ideosensory image.

While these are technically called “negative” images, they can have a very positive and beneficial result for all concerned. Insurance sales superstars have known for many years that policies are sold because people want to avoid negative situations. The top producers in insurance, equipment maintenance, safety, waste disposal, and many other fields have known for years the secret of using negative ideosensory images to get positive results. Negative ideosensory images can work for sales professionals in virtually any sales specialization. Chances are, very few people in your field know how to use this technique—so it could give you an extra competitive advantage.

Controlling what Your Customer Will Forget

Amnesia is another hypnotic phenomenon quite common in everyday life and in sales. We are not talking about the extreme cases of amnesia in which a person forgets who he is, but rather such common forms as forgetting a friend’s name or forgetting one’s own phone number. When people say, “Gee, my mind just went blank,” they have temporarily gone into a hypnotic state, and have temporarily left the “real world.” When they come back they experience hypnotic amnesia and have no memory of where they were.

The sales super-stars we have studied have an uncanny ability to trigger this “forgetting” response in their prospects and customers, especially about the products of a competitor. Here is an example:

“The other companies in this business try to overload you with so many tiny details, it is impossible to remember much of anything about their products. However, it will be easy for you to remember the simple and clear benefits of our products.”

In this example, the sales professional triggered amnesia for the competitor’s product. Amnesia can also be triggered for a price, a name, or any other piece of data.

Who does amnesia work best with? Prospects and customers who are not detail-oriented. Detail-oriented people need facts and figures to feel comfortable about the decisions they make. Don’t erase any of the details they find so helpful. Instead, find out what they are most interested in, and show them how they can get more of that with your product or service.

Some clients will come to you and report they already have amnesia. They may say they have looked at another product, but they can’t remember much about it. Upon hearing this, some top salespeople will deepen the amnesia by saying, “That’s only natural. It is easy to forget all those confusing figures and claims. Here is what you really need to know . . .” They then persuasively describe the most important features and benefits of the product using ideosensory messages.

A word of warning: hypnotic amnesia is a powerful technique. You should never use it to get a client or prospect to forget any crucial piece of data. Prospects and customers deserve to have all the facts before they make a decision. Hypnotic amnesia should only be used to erase memories of trivial details.

You can trigger hypnotic amnesia by using words such as “forget,” “hard to remember,” “impossible to remember,” “not important to remember,” or “too boring to remember.” Adding extra emphasis to these words, stretching the words out, and saying them with some extra punch in your voice will give them additional impact. This is a combination of direct suggestion and intraverbal suggestion.

If another customer has ever told you that some fact or figure was “impossible to remember,” or “too boring to remember,” you can also quote that other customer to plant a suggestion for hypnotic amnesia. This is especially powerful if the other customer was a doctor, a lawyer, or another highly educated or high-credibility figure. People like to hear stories. Telling a customer stories about what other customers have said is a sophisticated way of giving that customer permission to do the same thing. Obviously, you should never tell a story about another customer that is not true.

What if you prefer to sell against the competition and your customer can’t remember anything about the competitor’s product? In that case, you may wish to use another technique of hypnotic selling: Hypernesia.

Controlling what Your Customer Will Remember

Hypernesia is really the flip-side of amnesia—it refers to the enhancement of memory and recall. Many memory enhancement techniques are based on linking together related sounds and images. Were you able to remember Mr. Hammer’s name because he was tough as nails to sell, or did you see a hammer every time you looked at him? You have undoubtedly already used many techniques of hypernesia on yourself to help remember important facts, dates, names and places.

The first rule of inducing hypernesia is to tell your clients and prospects what they will remember. This is especially effective if you combine the hypernesia with ideosensory hypnosis:

“You know, you may be lying in bed tonight and you will see yourself and some of your best friends sailing in this beautiful yacht.”

In the preceding example, you have told the prospect he will lie in bed and see himself in the yacht. If you hadn’t said this, when he went to bed tonight, it would probably have been like any other night. It is unlikely that he would have thought of your yacht. Now, having planted this hypernesia suggestion, he is much more likely to think of the yacht when his head hits the pillow. Let’s look at another example:

“You won’t be able to forget this hot tub. You may be driving along today in traffic and all day you might visualize sitting in the hot tub with your wife giving you a wonderful massage. And, you will imagine looking up at the twinkling stars and the warm water swirling around, so comfortable and relaxing.”

Astute readers will note that this example combines hypernesia with the previously described power of ideosensory trance. If you skillfully combine these two hypnotic techniques, your prospect won’t be able to get the image of your product out of his mind. This technique increases the likelihood that he will form pleasant associations when he thinks of you and your product. And, it also increases the likelihood that he will buy from you.

You can also use hypernesia to sell against the competition. If the competition’s product is more expensive, your competitor might have told the prospect it “only costs $1 extra per day.” That doesn’t sound like very much.

You can counter that sales strategy by saying, “I don’t think you will ever be able to forget that the other product costs $365 extra over the course of a year. $365. That’s a lot of money. That $365 number will stay in your mind.”

You can create hypernesia, or a lasting memory, of any competitive difference you want a customer to focus on. It may be price. It may be service, technical features, power, your superior warranty, or extra benefits you offer.

You can induce hypernesia by using words such as, “you won’t be able to forget,” “it is unforgettable,” “you won’t be able to get this out of your mind,” “you will think of this all day,” “you will think of this all week,” “you will remember this for the rest of your life,” or “this will leave a positive memory with you forever.” You can also plant the suggestion that someone else will find this unforgettable: “your wife will always remember this,” or “your children will always be grateful for this,” or “your husband will remember this for the rest of his life.” You can add another level of sophistication by telling a mesmerizing story about a customer who bought your product or service several years ago, whose spouse still remembers it. This is called “value-added selling” and it paints a very persuasive picture of a lasting benefit.

Negative hypernesia is a technique used by a number of top salespeople. Using this technique, you tell a story about someone who bought a competitor’s product:

“He bought an XYZ brand of computer, some clone computers for his company. He can’t even remember the name now, but he will never be able to forget what happened. The computers were almost impossible to service and they couldn’t be upgraded. The hard disks had several head crashes and he lost almost a year’s worth of financial data. He will remember that nightmare forever.”

Notice that the sales professional did not mention the name of the competitor’s computer. This is a practice we strongly endorse. We have found that it is rarely necessary to mention a competitor by name. You can sell against them by mentioning and comparing features and benefits. You come across as much more elegant and sophisticated by not mentioning competitors by name. Under no case should you speak in a direct, derogatory manner about a competitor. This only makes you look bad, and there is no need to resort to such behavior. Hypnotic selling techniques are so powerful and so varied that you can accomplish all you wish to accomplish through ethical, friendly methods.

While negative hypernesia has the word “negative” in its name, its effects are quite positive. You are telling people a mesmerizing story about some problems some other customer encountered that the other customer will “never be able to forget.” You thus, in a safe and friendly manner, warn the customer about a problem—and you show him how he can avoid it.

Motivating Customers by Putting Them In Positive Emotional States

Revivication, the process of mentally reliving earlier experiences, is actually more common than most people realize. It is used by top salespeople, politicians and religious leaders to get listeners to relive previous experiences. The purpose is to tap into all of the positive emotions associated with those experiences.

By revivifying a personal experience, the listener is placed in a more emotional and suggestible state. He or she goes into the “enjoyment mode” of being. This is similar to the change of emotional state we experience upon entering a movie theater. Have you ever watched people as they enter a movie theater? Watch their expressions. You can see that some of them begin to get a glazed look in their eyes. They begin to relax. Their breathing slows down and deepens. They relive associations and memories they have had in other movie theaters. They begin entering an altered state of consciousness.

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