The Advancing Leadership Blog

How to Use Your Body to Win Sales!

Body Language to Stand Out, Win Trust and Seal the Deal Every Time You Speak

By Mark Bowden – Originally posted on

Whatever you are selling, regardless of whether you are a big corporation or a small to medium sized business, and regardless of whether you are offering a product or service: we all know that customers like to buy from companies and people they believe they can trust. Customers like to have confidence in their initial brand experience before they are willing to consider taking a chance on buying. The sales professional is an integral part of that experience. Customers need to feel that the sales professional they are dealing with has credibility before they leap into making a purchase.

However, when most of us are preparing to sell, or getting others geared up to sell, how much time do we spend helping to raise confidence levels around the content of the pitch vs time spent becoming more confident with our delivery and within that our own human behavior? How much time are we taking to really look at how our human behavior will win that trust we need to get the sale? Today we live in a world where the customer will often know more than any sales pro about the product or service and how it rates in the marketplace – we all have the tools to diligently carry out online research – and consequently the time has never been more perfect for us to refocus some energy into improving how well a sales team performs from a trust perspective even more than a content perspective.

Understanding how your organization’s salesfocused staff can visually communicate trust to their customers and prospects—with the best body language—is a major factor in getting potential buyers on side. Using the right nonverbal signals increases a sales professional’s likeability and subsequently the likeability of the product or service that they are representing. This, in turn, can help elevate your sales team members, and so your business, into what I call the “friend” status in the mind of the buyer. If this friend status is not achieved then it is most likely a sales professional will fall into the category of “indifferent” in the eye of the buyer, and just not been seen or heard by the prospect—fatal to a successful sale. The sales professional also could well hit the “predator” category for the buyer, which means both they and what they are selling can get easily thrust into a negative frame from which the customer will retreat, or could feel inclined to become aggressive towards. The only category left to fall into is “sexual partner”! There is no doubt that in some cases sex sells… however this may not work long term, and for many the connotation does not fit with their brand!

So instead of pitching the content around your product or service to an audience’s intellect, here are five top tips for any sales professional to use when looking to win sales with their body language by talking nonverbally to the customer’s primitive brain in a way that wins trust:


When talking with potential clients or customers, let them see you: move out from behind obstructions, pull your chair back from the table or step away from the speaker’s lectern if you are presenting—in short, display more of your body. Your prospects needs to see your body and body language to decide what they think your intentions and feelings are towards them. The less you show, the more they makeup those feelings and intentions, and tend to default towards the negative.


Keep your palms open with nothing in your hands to let others know that you mean no harm and that you are there for their benefit. This is a universally recognised “friendly” gesture and instinctively puts you in a friendly and trustworthy frame of mind for the potential buyer.


Place your hands in what is called the TruthPlane; a term I’ve trademarked for the horizontal plane that extends 180 degrees out of your navel area, to display a sense to your prospects that you can be trusted. Bringing the audience’s unconscious attention to this vulnerable area of your body will make them feel that you are very confident. By assuming this physicality, you will feelconfident too. Watch how the really welltrained and trusted news anchors use this technique on TV.


Show your prospects you are excited by your product or service by raising your hands to your chest level, aka the PassionPlane, when you speak. This sends your own heart rate up, and your prospect will mirror this physical reaction by getting excited about purchasing as well.


Don’t try to read other people’s body language consciously for so called “buying signals.” Generally, most of us stand little more than a 50/50 chance of getting it right. Instead, concentrate on influencing your audience—your buyers—to mirror your simple and positive nonverbal behaviour, and they will be extremely likely to trust and engage with you every time you sell.

Use these five body language techniques yourself, and introduce them to your sales team to use, and you will increase your prospects’ trust and confidence in you and your people and seamlessly your credibility that of your organization and†your product will flourish.


Communications expert, author and TEC Speaker Mark Bowden‘s trademark techniques are used by top leaders and political players around the world who want to gain an advantage— beyond words—when they speak. His bestselling body-language book, Winning Body Language, has been translated into five languages and sold around the world.

See Mark present live on September 11 at The Art of Leadership in Calgary. Receive up to $100 off your registration fee with discount code TEC27. Register to attend HERE>

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