A Transformational Word In Sales

Transformational Ties

The transformational sale exists around us. The is one word that changes a small purchase to a larger one, exponentially. That question is “why?”

For me, when “Why?” was asked, it happened during a search for a single red tie, turning into a biggest purchase worth $1,500. Therefore I’m proof of how “Why?” can work.

Experiencing It As A Customer

My transformational sale occurred as a customer, when my wife and I were shopping at a mall. I ventured down to the Men’s Warehouse, while she split off to her own storefront choice.

My intent was for a new tie, nothing more than that. I ended up spending $1,500 on how a word changed the dynamic between myself and a salesman named Brandon, transforming into a seller-client relationship. All in the matter of 20 minutes.

Focused On A Single Red Tie

While I’m not a snob, I’ve never been one to look at custom-made suits, or super-expensive clothes. The Men’s Warehouse has always been a great fit for me. Suits, jackets, and a friendly staff.

As I made my way casually from the front of the store toward the tie rack in the back, a young sales person named Brandon approached.

“Hi, I’m Brandon. How can I help you?”

“I’m just looking for a tie, Brandon.”


And that was the magic word. It created a transformational sale by forming a question. Brandon asked the question with a smile, and left a pregnant pause, awaiting my answer.

“Why? Because I can always use another red tie.”

“But why is a tie important to you? May I ask what you do?”

“Sure. I’m a professional speaker, trainer and sales coach.”

The Magic Word Helps The Pitch

At this point, I attempted to ignore Brandon, focusing on the red tie selection. But Brandon stayed, following up on his magic word: “Why?”

“You know what would look incredible with your skin tone, hair color and that red tie?” Brandon started laying down an awesome sports coat that he magically had appear in front of me. “Can you imagine the impact that this jacket will make at your next workshop?”

That’s when he stopped me. I had to look at the sport coat. To evaluate it. And Brandon was right, it was a great looking item. Perfect.

“Uh, yeah, that is nice.”

“Why do you like it?” Brandon again offered up the magic word for me again, as a hook. He put the red tie on me, then presented me with the sport coat, which I put on. Looking in the mirror, with Brandon nearby, I could see the difference maker that the jacket, and the red tie, made together on me.

“Wow.” I couldn’t say anything else. I was stunned.

The Transformational Sales Experience

Brandon had reeled me in. And I was happy to be taken. When a seller becomes the customer in a transformational sale, we become suckers because it is so rare to meet another great seller. Despite whatever tricks we recognize, we still enjoy the experience, and become passionate to partner with them in the sales process.

Within about 17 minutes of entering a store on a mission to purchase a single red tie, I ended up buying $1,500 on several sport coats, a few shirts, and yes, that red tie. Brandon continued to foster the relationship beyond the first sport coat, and had me convinced the value in purchasing more.

It got me thinking back to that magic word that he used. It was a gem. It was effective. Something that isn’t used enough in the sales process. One that quickly gets to the prospect’s motivates, hidden agendas, that lie beneath the surface.


What Ask “Why?” Does To A Prospect

Why do you want that?

Why is that important to you?

Why do you want to go that route?

Why leads to what, when, where, and sold.

I have to say that Brandon earned his commission that day. Whenever I wear the sports jackets, I think about his use of the magic word. Effective and simple. But deadly when it comes to a sale. My credit card can attest to that.

Greg Bennett

Greg Bennett

Greg Bennett has trained multiple sports franchises over a 20-year sales career, and is a successful podcaster. Bennett will be teaching "Sales Staff Management Skills" at the Sports Sales Boot Camp in Pittsburgh on June 28, 2016.

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