Focus on How: Don’t feature pitch

You’ve spent the first conversation(s) with your customer digging into their ‘WHY’ and gathering deep discovery through processes like SPIN and BNAPR. You have the data and spend time with a ‘data mindset’ – seeing the pain and goals through the clients eyes.

In your mind the value is build – you have a recommendation for a solution and are ready to get it sold and impact the client’s day to day. As a authentic counselor salesperson – you want to help the client and as an expert you see a clear path forward.

The problem is you need to properly convey that recommendation and messaging in an impactful way to your client. This is often done with a visual demo to showcase the unique and vital ways that your solution will address the client’s business need.

Demos are essential because many of us are visual learners – especially with technology. You need to back up verbal information with a visual representation (Real world view) of how this product actually works. Can you imagine purchasing a car without test driving it. Granted you might feel comfortable forgoing a test drive if you have owned the car before and got a good deal, but typically we like to see and touch a solution before purchasing it. Amazon and online retailers even integrate tools to emulate an in person experience so you feel confident in buying online. Visual representation is important.

Demos need to be strategized and individualized for the unique customer. There is no one size fits all demo. This is a hard lesson for sales professionals – new and tenured. New sellers are so green they just want to talk about the solution…tenured reps know how to build a focused demo, but sometimes old habits surface and you show ‘a standby’ demo for every customer

When I started selling a file sharing solution at my last company – I loved the tool (I still do) because it solves so many problems for clients across industries. Email encryption and a secure portal can be used in so many ways for one customer and solve tons of bottlenecks.

The passion was infectious to customers, but I fell flat when I first started because I relied too much on feature pitching. I understood what they needed (email encryption) but as an expert I could see so many other uses and the problem is I oversold.

It is so hard not to oversell your product when you see potential clients cannot see. Yes, you need to paint a picture of the ‘art of the possible’ – but when a client is focused on specific metrics you need to address those first and make the demo relevant.

If the attorney just wanted to see email encryption with our plugin – I would build value around that in the demo and not feature pitch everything.

There is a balance here because you can open the door to adding in ‘features’ outside of the initial need when demoing, but you need to that with additional qualifying questions and discovery on the call – so the client is onboard.

Ex: I understand that you are needing email encryption, but how are you securing internal files and sharing them between teams now that you are remote?

A: Email or faxing

Email is great, but many of my clients say that it gets cumbersome to track document changes and keep track of all the emails.

A: it is a problem, but we figure it out

What if you had a central portal to keep all that information and track those changes in real time with versioning? You can access it easily from you phone or laptop and everyone has the ease of use and security to get work done. Does that sound helpful

Once you have qualified additional features with real interest (not just want you think they want to see) – great keep going, but don’t overload the client.

They will lose interest and often think they will be overpaying for a solution because it comes with features they don’t need (you can position this accordingly if it is an objection ‘Actually we include these features as a grace within the package – you have access to them, but many clients only use one feature.’)

Now that I’m at a new job – I’m having to relearn this and really focus on what is relevant. We want to show just enough to build and cement value.

What are some ways that you are able to main the interest of client in the demo and continue to move the sales cycle forward?

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