Mr. Spock’s Guide To Sales

We buy because of emotion, and we justify the decision using logic.

Good sales people identify the emotion driving their prospect, and then line up the “reasons why” the purchase is a good idea. They use logic to close the sale, but logic is not making the sale.

“Reason why” selling even worked with Captain Kirk on Star Trek.

Kirk was a hot-head, you will remember. He wanted to spring into action. Spock, the non-emotional, scientific Vulcan, deftly supplied his Captain the logic needed to justify the decision.

Get this: Spock was the consummate sales person. A pro. Kirk was not.

Most sales people who turn us off are selling from the Captain Kirk school of sales – all emotion, passion and pushiness.

The sales people we love, the ones we happily buy from, are from the Mr. Spock school of sales; they simply supply us with the logical reasons that support what we wanted to do already.

Be like Spock; supply the reasons why. It’s the logical thing to do.

Ray Edwards is a world-renowned copywriter and communications strategist, writing for some of the most powerful voices in leadership and business including New York Times bestselling authors Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen (Chicken Soup for the Soul) and Tony Robbins. Ray is a sought-after speaker and author, hosts a popular weekly podcast, and blogs at

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  • Banjoman_15

    I don't get this. I thought that we buy on emotion. How do you set the presentation up so that you do that, but 'write' the copy as just logic?

    • We do buy based on emotion. The trick is to identify the emotion that is driving the buyer, and use logic to support that emotional desire. We don't create emotions in buyers – we merely channel those that are already at work.

  • martin_obrien

    Never liked Star Trek. Never liked Spock. However, this post nailed my biggest weakness as a salesperson: I'm 100% Kirk. Thanks for great post, Ray. I have a lot of work to do.

    • Glad to be of service, Martin. Live long and prosper!

  • joe

    Great post, had never thought along those lines..had one time equated good sales to Sam Waterston's DA character in “law & order” bringing up a damaging question, the camera gets in tight on defendant's face and he's not answered, the DA says..”we're waiting Mr. Defendant, –pause– “We're still waiting”..

    The lesson there is time just to be quiet and let your presentation, proposal, whatever just to sink in…sometimes silence is the best closing phrase.


    • As long as you're keyed into the prospect's dominant emotion – yes, I agree with you.

  • As a trekker, I enjoyed the analogy. And you're spot on Ray! When I've closed higher-end clients, I was like Spock, calm, cool, collected, not very emotional, BUT I hit their emotional triggers of exactly WHAT they wanted and reminded them of how important it is for them to have it. 🙂