Use your knowledge of Frames of Reference to close sales

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How can you take advantage of NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) to set off your sales in an upward trajectory?

In a sales meeting, you have to listen really well to your client. Not the distracted kind of listening that you do as you think of the right things to say next. You must give your full attention to the client. You must be attuned to him through matching and mirroring — words, tonality and physiology.

And you must find out what his frame of reference is. In NLP, a frame of reference is defined as how a person judges the results of his actions. This could also mean his standards. You can ask a client how they know they are doing a good job and you can immediately identify whether he has an internal or external frame of reference.

When the client answers, “I instinctively know I am doing a good job, I don’t need anybody to tell me so”, then you have someone who has an internal frame of reference. These people make good entrepreneurs. They don’t need a lot of validation from outside to go on with their work.

But when he says, “I seek other people’s opinion about my work”, then he has an external frame of reference. This kind of people is perfect for service-oriented businesses like salons. They would seek client’s opinion for them to find out if they did their work well.

A person with an internal frame of reference with an external check looks inside then outside. A person with an external frame of reference looks outside then inside.

Frames of reference have been used in the past for personality profiling and you can use this too in closing sales. Be sure to follow the 5-step selling process discussed in a previous article – 5 Steps Sales Process Works.

For clients with external frame of reference, you can use testimonials from satisfied clients/customers for your product or service. Tell them the great things other people have to say about your product or service. You can build your presentation around these testimonials. These will definitely catch their attention.

For clients with an internal frame of reference, you can emphasize the benefits your product can bring to them. You must do a good job of stacking up your product’s value. You must ask questions to find out if your solution suits his unique needs and problems.  When you have done this, it would be like feeding salt to the horses and they would thirst for your product.

Selling based on a client’s orientation would then be natural and would require less effort.

To find out how you can harness the power of NLP in closing sales, come and join our 7-Day NLP Training!

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By popular demand we have turned many of our multi-day workshops into multi-week online courses with a live day to kick them off. Learn more at

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