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3 Steps to Unlock your Chameleon Sales Abilities: Recognition, Adjustment, and Execution

chameleon on pink background - MarketStar Blog sales abilities


The best sales reps are like chameleons—adapting their sales pitch to resonate with the way a client best receives it. 

A chameleon is best known for its ability to change colors, camouflage, and adapt to its environment. It’s fascinating to watch in real time.

Your current and prospective clients all have different personalities and come from various corporate backgrounds that have shaped how they think, engage, interpret, and most importantly, the way they buy. In 2020, I sold to clients who didn’t care about the nitty-gritty behind “how the sausage is made” as long as it delivered the service they expected. Other times, I’ve had clients who are eager to dig deeper into the who, what, when, where, and how. You have likely experienced both these types of buyers as well as many in between.

By improving your chameleon skills, you will win more deals, win bigger deals, and receive more of those precious referrals you love.

So, what is the chameleon skill? It’s the ability to recognize what influences a decision maker, adjust your sales pitch or proposal to emphasize influences that resonate, and confidently deliver it all in a simple format.


Step No. 1: Recognize what influences the buyer.

The key is recognizing what type of buyer you are dealing with. To do so, you will have to listen, ask more questions, and get to know them a little bit. You are looking for signs that show you characteristics of how they make decisions and what influences them. Is it emotion, data, reviews, price, speed, convenience, or brand recognition? Often, buyers are influenced by a couple of factors. When I buy something, three that influence me are data, brand recognition, and honest reviews from other buyers.

In my opinion, step one is the most difficult. It takes a balance of selling and befriending at the same time to get your prospects to open up. This will take practice, but you will get better with each client.

Come up with 3-4 questions you include periodically within your discovery phase of the sales process. Don’t be afraid to be straightforward. Examples might include:

  • What are the primary reasons you are interested in buying product/service XYZ?
  • Have you ever bought something like this before?
  • Why did you decide to buy that service the first time?
  • What do you like or dislike about your current service?
  • How will you measure if this was a successful purchase?  

Learn how to build a stronger B2B sales team by adding specialized sales roles  to your team. Download the e-book »

Step No. 2: Adjust your pitch.

For a transactional sales rep, you’re going to have to act quickly and adjust on the fly. For enterprise sales, you’re going to have multiple stakeholders to consider and numerous versions of your proposal to modify. Find the balance that works for you and will be impactful through the remainder of the sales process.

I know you have never heard a sports analogy used before, so I’ll give you one. Think of it as the head coach of a sports team. The coach will attempt to recognize the opposing team's tendencies and then make adjustments throughout the game or at halftime to give them the best chance to win the game.

Sales is very similar; once you have an idea of what influences your buyers’ decisions, use your chameleon skills to adapt your approach.

Step No. 3: Execute the adjusted plan.

If you have completed the first two steps successfully, the buyer won’t even know that you are on step three of your master plan. This is where you will picture Mr. Burns from The Simpsons tapping his fingers together with a smirk on his face saying, “Excellent.”

Now that you have a sound vision for what influences the buyer and how you can sell to those tendencies, it’s time to bring it all together. Be confident, and emphasize aspects of your product or service that will help them solve their problem, then back it up with examples that resonate with what influences their buying tendencies. Let me say that again: Emphasize aspects that will help your buyer, and then back it up with examples that resonate with what influences their buying tendencies. 

If reviews from others influence the buyer, tell them how the product will help them and follow up with a story of how it helped another company they would recognize. If data influences the buyer, tell them how the product will help them and back it up with a graphic highlighting analytics of how they will benefit.

Don’t forget to leverage the resources you have around you. If your buyer is interested in your product's technical aspect, but you aren’t confident speaking about that, look to include someone within your organization that can sell to the buyer’s influences. Be the head coach of the deal and facilitate a buying experience for them that gives you the best chance to win!

By practicing these three steps, you will begin to see more deals push further through the sales funnel. Buyers will appreciate the way you are presenting the information and have a greater understanding of how your product can serve them.

MarketStar’s approach can help you close deals.

Again, it’s fascinating to watch a chameleon adapt to the surrounding environment. It’s also fascinating to watch a confident sales professional evaluate the situation and adjust to connect with all types of buyers. MarketStar can help fill the gaps in your sales process. Our Sales as a Service® approach can help you close your next chameleon deal. We offer so many adaptable services, including lead qualification, account management, sales engineer support, and customer success services, and we also provide the analytics and tools you need to demonstrate ROI and increase customer loyalty. 

To learn more, be sure to read our guide, The Full B2B Sales Team: Specialized Sales Roles to Accelerate the Sales Cycle.

The Full B2B Sales Team: Specialized Sales Roles e-book read now button

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