Cracking the Code: Neuroscience is Turning Art into Science

For a long time, selling has been considered an art, an complex art of persuasion, charm, and feeling now turning to a science. Successful salespeople seemed to have a special touch, but the mystery behind their success remained unsolved.


Why do some salespeople excel while others struggle to make a sale? What drives the choices of buyers when faced with similar products at different prices? Until recently, these questions remained unanswered.

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The Missing “Why” in Sales

Traditionally, understanding sales has relied on statistical analysis of results, like callback and conversion rates, and psychological testing to identify traits correlating with sales success.

But while these tools can tell us what happened, they fall short of explaining why it happened or how to replicate success consistently. They often lead to unclear advice such as, “We need to hire more salespeople like Fred or Mercy,” which doesn’t provide a scientific prescription for improvement.

Psychological testing, in particular, faces challenges because character traits like “self-motivated” are difficult to define clearly. What does “self-motivated” really mean, and how can it be objectively measured when individual motivations are diverse?

The Emergence of the “Science of Selling”

However, the landscape of selling is now on the brink of a revolutionary change, and it’s all thanks to neuroscience.

Neuroscientists have developed new tools and techniques that allow them to peer into the complex workings of the human brain during sales interactions. This unprecedented insight is transforming the art of selling into a science.

Consider this: Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine‘s department of neuroscience monitored the brains of volunteers engaged in a bargaining game between a “buyer” and a “seller.”

The results were astonishing. Brain scans revealed a “very significant difference in brain responses” between those who bluffed and those who didn’t. This means that even core selling behaviors like negotiating prices can now be measured in terms of brain activity.

The Neurochemical Revolution

Neuroscience doesn’t stop at observing brain activity. It delves deeper into the realm of neurochemistry, unveiling the secrets of how our brains respond to different circumstances.

For instance, we now know that exercise can chemically reduce stress. This is a game-changer for salespeople, given the inherent stress of their profession.

Neuroscience has also unveiled the chemical reactions behind motivation. Rather than relying on vague notions of “self-motivation,” we can now objectively measure it. This breakthrough allows individuals to rewire their brains for success, knowing precisely what mechanisms drive their motivation.

Rewriting Memories for Sales Success

Additionally, neuroscience has uncovered that our brains reconstruct memories each time we recall them, offering a unique opportunity to alter the content and meaning of those memories.

As this process becomes better understood, we can learn why some stories and messages are memorable while others are quickly forgotten.

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The Future of Selling

In the future, we can expect to witness the transformation of sales messages and techniques into a precise science. With neuroscience providing a measurable “why” behind “what happened,” selling will evolve from an art into a true science.

The “science of selling” is no longer a distant dream but a fast-approaching reality. The mysteries of why some excel in sales and why buyers make particular choices are being unveiled, thanks to the incredible insights provided by neuroscience.

This transformation is set to revolutionize the world of selling, bringing new levels of success and understanding to both salespeople and buyers. The art of selling is evolving into an exciting and precise science.


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