My regular work that helps people no longer lose new product launch momentum, and sell such latest offerings more effectively than they may have experienced before, makes me interested in the concept of neophobia.
In my field this primarily refers to the way that salespeople often shy away from selling the most recently released products. It has a mirror too. Specifically, when buyers deliberately shun ‘breaking the habit’. In context here this encompasses both active avoidance of switching supply or severe disinclination to take any latest new product pitched to them.
A classic, perhaps even the derivative, use of the term involves how to get kids to eat healthily. As I elaborate in my free eBook on the pitfalls to avoid when selling a new product, such neophobic behaviour can necessitate numerous attempts before they adopt a new taste.
So I enjoyed a sunny lunch sitting outside a Manchester eaterie with a friend well-versed in how many people that she knew were trying to get their offspring to eat more fruit and veg rather than burgers, chips and pop.
Evidently child psychologists have deduced the following:
When something is good for you, it takes 3 weeks to get into the habit, but just 3 days to break it.
When something is bad for you, it takes just 3 days to drop into that way, but 3 weeks to climb out of it.
I was immediately struck by how relevant this must be to the aforementioned sales scenarios we face.
If the expansion upon 3 weeks (21 days) is obviously having a conversation for each day, then what can they be?
What are the 21 separate pieces of interaction you must have with a prospect before they ‘change’, before they accept what you say about your new wares?
How do you monitor, manage and maintain them?
Who can you get to help you conduct some of them?
How set-up are you personally for the 21 transactions you need to create?
How can you keep up the will to pursue them even when the dark days make you feel like not bothering?