Paint The Picture Part 1: Painting An Emotional Picture For Your Client

Paint The Picture Part 1: Painting An Emotional Picture For Your Client

People don’t buy from someone who simply reads from a product’s spec sheet; they either buy from someone who sells the product cheaper or from someone who really connects with them emotionally. An exceptional salesperson knows how to paint the picture for their clients, touch their pain points, and lead them to the realization that they are giving their clients the solution to their problems. In this first episode of a two-part series, Sam Wakefield teaches you some ways to connect emotionally with your clients by using imagery, gap-building, and future-casting. Using some examples in HVAC sales, Sam shows the power that words have over people’s emotions when chosen with care. Listen and learn how to get your clients to see the value of your offerings and move them to action.

We’ve got a cool topic that I want to talk about. This is going to be part one of a two-part series about painting the picture. Are you painting an emotional picture for your client? That is what will differentiate you from the competition in the marketplace. That’s what’s going to separate you, head and shoulders, outside of everyone else. That’s what we’re talking about. I’ve got a couple of cool examples that we’re going to go over and start to understand the mindset and the basic philosophy behind how to paint the picture for someone. Thank you for reading. This is your source for not HVAC sales. HVAC is a big focus, but thank you for everyone who does other stuff. We’ve got electricians and plumbers. We have people who are in home security systems. We have people that sell cars and automotive. The philosophy is the same. It’s dealing with people.

One of the main things we have to understand is we are salespeople. To be exceptional and a stone-cold closer, you have to become a psychologist. This is not about learning the details of your product and being able to pitch your product. It’s awesome to be able to give a great presentation, but that is not why people buy. How many times have you ever heard, “You gave the very best presentation of anybody, but I still went with this other company because they were cheaper?” That’s telling us right there that while people were impressed by a presentation, it is not why they bought or didn’t buy. We educated them and then they still bought from somebody else. They took our concept and gave it to somebody else and said, “Can you do this plan for cheaper?” They did and so they went with them because people aren’t loyal to a good presentation.

People aren’t connected or they’re not building a relationship with a good presentation. They’re not building a relationship with somebody who knows the details of a product or knows all the manufacturer spec sheets behind a product. This is what we’re talking about with paint the picture. I’ve alluded to it a little bit in some of the other episodes here and there and loosely covered it. I wanted to dive in, thanks to one of my coaching students, Jordan. He was saying, “We got to focus on this. This is huge.” It’s been a game-changer for him. I know it’s going to be a game-changer for you as well. Painting the picture, what does it mean? Let’s use a basic example. Remember, don’t get lost in the weeds of what this example is. Think about the overarching philosophy and the overarching concept of what we’re talking about.

We’ll take explaining maybe a one-stage system to somebody. How many times have you heard people explain it like this and then I’m going to do it again a different way and see if you can feel and hear the difference in the way it’s explained? Most of the time when somebody is explaining a single-stage system, they say that there are lots of levels of equipment. Let’s start here. You’ve got your single-stage, which it’s on or it’s off, 100% or nothing. That’s like when you are getting in your car and the light turns green and you put your foot all the way to the floor and you floor it. One hundred percent you can get to the next stoplight and then you hit the brakes. Every single time it comes on, your flooring it, and then you hit the brakes. That’s not very efficient.

They then move to the next type of system. The next is two-stage or wherever else you’re going. That’s one way to explain it. That’s usually where most people stop with an explanation. At the end of the day, all the homeowners heard was this thing turns on and turns off. It’s like air conditioning that we’ve always had. What does it matter? What does it mean? The way to properly go through this and explain to someone and get them emotionally connected, because what we want to do is we’re wanting to set a stake in the ground and emotionally tie them. You want to put them in a situation mentally where they can feel the difference. You want them to feel as you’re describing. You have to use word pictures. What do I mean by this? Here’s a different explanation of a single-safe system.

“Mr. Homeowner, imagine the sun’s up in the area,” wherever you’re at. I’ll use the example of a super-hot summer day. It’s a typical July day and the sun is up. It might be 100 degrees outside and the heat is blasting on the house. Ideally, the system would have a nice long-run cycle so it can dehumidify. Dehumidifying is the number one purpose of the air conditioner. As it dehumidifies, then it feels cooler in the house. That’s what makes it feel awesome. When you’ve got your thermostat as you told me, you set it to 74 degrees and that’s what it’s doing. As the sun goes down, however, the cooling requirements start to drop. It doesn’t need as much air conditioning to get to the temperature.

Paint The Picture: We are all salespeople but in order to become exceptional, you have to become a psychologist.

What happens is it doesn’t run as long because it gets there a lot faster. Let me ask you this, Mr. Homeowner, “Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night and thought, ‘It’s getting hot in here. This is weird?’” When you look at the thermostat, it’s exactly where you have it set and you are like, “This is bizarre. Why does it feel hotter now in the middle of the night when it’s so much cooler outside?” You even have the temperature set a couple of degrees lower at night than you do during the day, but it feels warmer than it does at night because the thermostat is exactly where you have it set. That’s bizarre. What’s happening is because the sun went down, it’s not raising the temperature in the house. The temperatures are right but because it’s not running as long, it’s not dehumidifying. That gives you that 3:00 AM gross mugginess when you wake up in the middle of the night.

What we’re doing in this story is we’re leading them in the story so they have the epiphany moment on their own. We can’t give someone our epiphany moment when we realize what’s going on. We have to give them their own epiphany moment. Usually, at that point, the homeowner says, “It feels gross because it’s the humidity going up.” They realize what’s going on. We did several things with that. We gave them their revelation moment of realizing, “This is more about humidity than it is temperature.” Anyone can come in and say, “This holds the temperature steady,” but why? What does it matter to the homeowner? It doesn’t matter. They need to understand the foundation of it.

When they come to that revelation on their own, which they always do if you explain it this way, we’ve set the stake in the ground and we’ve set this foundation where we can come to later and say, “If you’re okay with waking up in the middle of the night being hot, then the single-stage equipment might be a good fit for you. If you don’t want that anymore, we have to look at some of these other levels of equipment to solve that problem.” They’re already mentally there. They’re mentally prepared to make that change. That’s how homeowners will disqualify themselves from basic equipment when you go through it this way.

Can you feel the difference? At the end of the day, people don’t care about the details. They don’t care how the equipment does it. They want to know how it’s going to make them feel. How many times have you gone to a project and you’ve asked them, “What are you looking for?” They’ll say, “I want it to be cool when I want it to be cool. I want it to be warm when I want to be warm and I wanted it to be cheap to do it.” They’re not telling you, “I don’t want it to be at variable speed. I don’t want it to have this ECM motor. I want it to have all of this control.” They don’t tell you any of that. They don’t care.

They might use some of that terminology because they’ve given themselves some Google crash course of trying to all of a sudden figure out what’s going on with their air conditioner and how to buy one and what to look for. More importantly, they don’t care about the details. They want to know how it makes them feel. Let me ask you this. When you have gone through that type of explanation, and they’ve gotten emotionally and mentally connected to what’s going on. They start to understand it and then all of your competition comes into the house. They say, “This is a single-safe system. You put your foot on the gas 100%. You take it off. That’s not very efficient and let’s move on.” That’s about the extent of the explanation.

How much separation do you think that gives you from the rest of the competition? An enormous amount because now you can solve that problem for them by having that emotional connection to the way that you’re explaining it. Painting the picture. Let’s talk about this a little further because it’s not about painting a word picture as you explain things and giving them their epiphany moment. We have to do two things. We have to do what’s called bridging the gap. They think they’re maybe a five on their pain level. Most people going into a project think that the new project is going to take them to a 6 or 7. In reality, our job when we’re in the house is to show them that this is not normal. You’ve gotten used to what you think is a five. Realistically, it’s a 2 or 3 on the 1 to 10 scale as far as good. You’re way down here, but it’s not going to take you to a 6 or 7. The new project is going to take you to a nine.

Paint The Picture: You want to put your client in a situation mentally where they can feel the difference you want them to feel.

We’re showing them how bad the situation truly is by asking them questions and listening. We’re having them explain the pain points that they have, what are the problems they’re having, and then showing them how it’s going to be better in the future. How do we do that? This is the rest of the painting of the picture for the homeowner. Here’s the part that most people miss. This is where everyone stops explaining a solution to a problem. Let’s take a simple solution. Maybe it is stuffy in the bedroom at night. We’ve gone through the questions. You’ve asked the right questions and they’ve shared that, “We always wake up in the middle of the night and it seems stuffy in the master bedroom. All the house seems pretty good, but at night when we lay down, we go to bed, it always seems stuffy in there. Is there something we could do about that?” When it comes time for presentation, the way that we paint the picture for the homeowner, we have to do some future casting. We have to put them emotionally and have them envision what it’s going to be like.

That goes like this, “You told me earlier, Mr. Homeowner, that one of the concerns you would like us to address was it seems to be stuffy in the master bedroom at night. Remember when we were talking about the different levels of equipment, the basic system, the on-and-off like we talked about? Remember that when you got up in the middle of the night and you said you experienced that? Every few nights, you’ll get up at 3:00 AM and it’s gross and muggy. Can you see how these continuous fans and the other equipment, because it’s cooling almost all of the time, it’s constantly keeping the air mixed? Can you see how that’s going to be a solution to your problem?” They’re going to say yes if you’ve explained it properly.

That right there is where most people stop but here is where the beauty happens. Here’s the future casting that has to come in. The very next thing is, “When you wake up in the morning and you’ve had a comfortable nice sleep all night and you didn’t wake up at all and you’re more rested and ready for the day, that’s going to feel awesome.” That’s that one little extra piece of your future casting. They’re thinking about, “I’ve got a great night’s sleep. I didn’t wake up. It wasn’t uncomfortable in the night.” You’ve situationally emotionally connected them to the future of what it’s going to be like once your project is completed and they’re experiencing it because they don’t care about the details. They just want to know how it’s going to make them feel.

Let’s do allergies. Allergies are a big one. Indoor air quality, with everything that’s going on in the world right now, that’s the question, “With everything going on in the world right now, how important is indoor air quality to you?” “It’s pretty important.” “Who in the house experiences allergies, asthma, respiratory issues, and things like that?” “It turns out that little Jeanie, the daughter, lives in the front corner bedroom. She experiences allergies and they’re pretty bad.” “How bad?” “She has some medication for it.” “Really that bad? Tell me more about that.” “She did shots for a while, but we’re past that. Now we’re on to some pills she takes. It’s a prescription.”

You’ve got them to share all that information, so when you’re offering the solution, don’t talk about the details. You can go through the details and say, “We’re going to install maybe this germicidal lamp and this air filter. It’s going to clean the air up. It’s going to get rid of the VOCs out of the air. It’s going to do this, this and this.” You have to go through those details and then the future casting looks like this, “Once we’ve gone through this project, we’re able to turn your house into a sanctuary from all of the allergens and everything that’s bothering little Jeanie.” She wakes up the next morning and she’s going to come running in here and give you a big hug and say, “Thank you so much. I’ve slept so much better because now I’m not sneezing all night.” She’s not fighting the allergies. You’re able to give her a cleaner environment so she can have a lot of better sleep. The house is a sanctuary away from the allergens. We’re able to make such a huge difference with that.

That’s the next piece, your forecasting, what it’s going to be like for their daughter to live a lot more allergy-free life in the house. That’s the little bitty things. Don’t get lost in these examples and don’t try to copy it word for word. Think about the overall philosophy. Think about the idea that if you go through and say, “We’re going to install this better filter. It’s a thicker filter. It pulls more stuff out of the air and you don’t have to change it as often. We’re going to install this UV light, which is going to prevent growth in the coil in the plenum. It’s going to be this much. Would you like to add it to the project?” That’s a whole lot different. That’s going through the details. Anyone can read the detailed spec sheet.

Paint The Picture: At the end of the day, people don’t care how the equipment does what it does. They just want to know how it’s going to make them feel.

It takes becoming that psychologist and saying, “Remember we talked about those allergy issues. Once we have installed this filter and this UV light, the house is going to be a lot more like a sanctuary for your daughter. She’s going to wake up with many fewer allergy issues. That’s going to be great when you’re not having to take as much medication. She’s not nearly as affected by the seasonal allergies here.” It’s a different conversation. It’s not about the details. It’s about the solution to their problem. That’s future casting. It’s painting that picture of what it’s going to be like. Here’s the thing. With your competition in your area, nobody is doing this. Only the very top people in your area or anywhere else are having a conversation like this. Using this kind of language with a homeowner makes all the difference because people don’t care about how your product does something. They only care that it’s going to work and how it’s going to make them feel.

That’s our episode. That’s part one. Part two, we’re going to flip the script and we’re going to talk about how do we paint the picture for ourselves to discover what it is that’s holding your client back from purchasing from you. What is holding them back from buying? What is holding them back from doing the deal or getting the deal done? Thanks for reading. If you are not part of our Facebook group, go find it. You can get the link right from the website. It is There you can learn all about our coaching program. We have such amazing results with our clients, especially I do private coaching. If you are someone who you are getting ready for the season, you know that 2020 is your year. 2020 started ridiculously horrible. With all the craziness going on in the world, but now it’s getting hot. You know this is the year to explode your business.

Reach out to me. I would love to hear from you. Maybe you are a fit for the coaching program, which will amplify and escalate your success. It will grow it to such a fast rate because you’re not wasting time anymore. You don’t have to go out and trial and error all this stuff because I’ve already got it figured out for you. Reach out to me and go to the website. You can email me at I’d love to hear from you. Let me know what topics you want me to make an episode for. I love to get your feedback. What are you struggling with? What are you seeing in the marketplace right now? You don’t have to be an air-conditioning salesperson, comfort consultant, project manager, or whatever we call ourselves nowadays. You can be from any industry.

Reach out with your questions. I would love to answer them. I’d love to build an episode around it because if you have a question, other people have the same question. Let’s join together so we can help as many people as possible and share this with someone, share the Facebook group. Let’s grow this culture and this community of living a life where we are able to work less and sell more. You don’t have to lose your life by working all the time to make amazing sales in your industry. You can do it by increasing that close rate, increasing your ticket size, and crushing it in your marketplace. Until next time, everyone, let’s go out there and save the world one heatstroke at a time. Let’s go save the world one frostbite at a time. I will talk to you again soon.

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