By Kelly Fanelli


Chamber Membership: How To Close The Sale By Mirroring!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Kelly Fanelli



This is the fifth post in the guest blog series by Kelly Fanelli, the Membership Director at the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Florida. (Need to catch up? Start from the beginning.)



Clients do business with people they like and trust.  How will you get your prospects to like and trust you?  

One of the easiest ways is through mirroring! I'll show you how to use this method to tailor your communication style to your prospects and close the sale. 

Mirroring for Chamber Membership Sales - image with bird reflection 


Read their surroundings:  Environment

You can learn a lot about a person by the environment they surround themselves with.

What does their office look like?     

Is it tidy with a place for everything and everything in its place? 

  • This is a controlled person who likes order and efficiency.  You’ll need a professional presentation that’s brief and to the point.  Don’t be entertaining, be informative.

Is it slightly messy, with papers spread everywhere and doodles in the margins? 

  • This person likes loose rules and flexible schedules.  You’ll need to present information to them in a relaxed manner that leaves plenty of time for them to interrupt you. 

What’s the décor?  Colors?  

Is it a sleek, modern office in soft, neutral colors?

  • This is a person who likes contemporary perspectives and timely information.

Bright colors, eclectic furniture and whimsical art portray an artistic temperament. 

  • A light touch and a breezy tone will go a long way to help them be comfortable with you.


Read the prospect:  Body Language

People will give you amazing insight into themselves through body language if you’re careful to observe them.

How do they walk into the room?

When they enter the room, do they do it briskly?  Do they use quick, exact movements?  Do they sit down in a smooth motion and focus immediately on you and the conversation at hand? 

  • You need to match yourself to them.  Rise quickly, extend your hand in a firm handshake, sit immediately and start the conversation with a short, to-the-point question that immediately asks them for their opinion.  Not a yes or no question, but one that requires their thoughts on an important aspect of their business.  The question is about them, not about you or the Chamber.

Do they enter slowly?  Approach you before sitting?  Join you at a table or sit in a chair on your side of the desk? 

  • Rise slowly, move in to shake their hand in a friendly manner and walk back to the desk or sitting area with them.  Ease into your chair and make a polite comment about something in their office.  Ask them where they got a piece of art in the office or comment on a photo of their family.  Again, not a yes or no question, but not something about their business. 

fa-star Kelly Fanelli 101

Develop rapport!  You have to give people a moment to like you before you start into the sale.  Ask them a question that engages them in conversation.  Use their environment for clues.  Family pictures, golf clubs in the corner, awards on the shelves all offer great openers.

What’s their demeanor?

Do they lean in when they talk?

  • You’ll need to lean in too.  This is an intense person that you’ll need to match, or their respect for you will suffer.

Are they leaning back in their chair, legs relaxed and hands expressive? 

  • If you lean in and are intense in your delivery, they will think you arrogant and aggressive.  Not good.  Relax, lean back and give them plenty of room.  

What are their speech patterns like? 

Do they speak quickly? 

  • You’ll need to match your style to theirs.  Speak in short, specific sentences.  Don’t use a lot of adjectives and descriptive language.  Get to your point quickly and answer their questions directly. 
  • You’ll need numbers, charts and graphs for this prospect. This is a left-brained person who likes to draw their own conclusions and they are not interested in flowery descriptions. 

Do they speak slowly? 

  • If you’re too fast in your speech, they will perceive you as a “fast talker” and distrust you.  Slow down and give them a moment to assess you. 
  • This right-brained person will love your stories of how similar companies have been successful in your Chamber.  Paint them a picture with your words of their potential success and illustrate your points with testimonials. 

fa-star Kelly Fanelli 101

Do some research and prepare your mirroring in advance.  You can often get great insight by background and education on an individual.  You can tell a lot about a company by the design and tone of their website.  What colors do they use?  Does it have statistics, charts and graphs or pictures and stories?


Use mirroring to match your style to your prospect and they will like, trust and follow you into membership.  It works for me!  Try it for yourself and let me know how it works for you.

Image source: Flickr, Lip Kee, CC BY-SA 2.0, adapted from original


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