AIDAS theory the initials of five words used to express it (attention, interest, desire, action, & satisfaction) is basis for many sales & advertising texts & is the skeleton around which many sales training programs are organized. During the successful selling interview, according to this theory, the prospects mind passes through five successive mental states: attention, interest, desire, action & satisfaction. Implicit in this theory is the notion that the prospect goes through these five stages consciously, so the sales presentation must lead the prospect through them in the right sequence if a sale is to result.
These are the following steps for prospecting
Securing attention: The goal is to put the prospects in to a receptive state of mind. The first few minutes of the interview are crucial. The sales person has to have reason, or an excuse, for conducting the interview. If the salesperson previously has made an appointment, this phase presents no problem, but experienced sales personnel say that even with an appointment, a salesperson must possess considerable mental alertness, & be a skilled conversationalist, to survive the start of the interview. The sales person must establish good rapport at once. The salesperson needs an ample supply of conversation openers. Favorable first impressions are assured by, among other things, proper attire, neatness, friendliness, and a genuine smile. Skilled sales personnel often decide upon conversation openers just before the interview so that those chosen are as timely as possible, conversation openers that cannot be readily tied in with the remainder of the presentation should be avoided, for once the conversation starts to wander, great skill is required to return to the main theme.
Gaining interest: The second goal is to intensify the prospects attention so that it evolves into strong interest. Many techniques are used to gain interest. Some salespeople develop a contagious enthusiasm for the product or a sample. When the product is bulky or technical, sales portfolios, flipcharts, or other visual aids serve the same purpose. Throughout the interest phase, the hope is to search out the selling appeal that is most likely to be effective. The more experienced the salesman, the more he has learned from interviews with similar prospects. But even experienced sales personnel do considerable probing, closeness of the interview subject to current problems, its timeliness, & their mood, skeptical or hostile & the salesperson must take all these into account in selecting the appeal to emphasize.
Kindling desire: The third goal is to kindle the prospects desire to the ready to buy point. The salesperson must keep the conversation running along the main line toward the sale. The development of sales obstacles, the prospects objections, external interruptions, & digressive remarks can sidetrack the presentation during this phase. Obstacles must be faced & ways found to get around them. Objections need answering to the prospects satisfaction. Time is saved, & the chance of making a sale improved if objections are anticipated & answered before raises them. External interruptions cause breaks in the presentations, & when conversation resumes, good salespeople summarize what has been said earlier before continuing.
Inducing actions: If the presentation has been perfect, the prospects are ready to act that is, to buy. However, buying is not automatic and, as a rule, must be induced. Experienced sales personnel rarely try for a close until they are positive that the prospect is fully convinced of the merits of the proposition. Thus, it is up to the sales person to sense when the time is right. The trial...