The prospect takes a real interest in your company and the potential results your solution offers. You get excited and immediately ask, “Can we schedule a demo so you can see the great capabilities of our system?”
They agree! Yet, after the demo, they go silent. Where did all of that interest go? And even though they said they were impressed with your capabilities, they disappeared. Why?
Has this happened to you?
This isn’t an uncommon occurrence in sales. We see an initial interest on the part of the prospect and after the demo they’re gone. Let’s look at three of the most common reasons our prospects lose interest.
First, you identified their pain, but was it developed? Is the pain the customer is experiencing intense enough for them to act? Many times, when we hear their pain, we immediately assume they’re ready to buy. This isn’t always the case. The customers’ pain needs to be quantified as it relates to the impact on the business.
The way to bring more awareness of their pain is by asking implication questions. Implications questions develop the sense of urgency. For example, if you’re having problems shipping orders, ask, “What’s the impact on customer satisfaction? What’s the impact on losing future business, your reputation in the market, employee morale?” All of these questions intensify the need for your solution. Sometimes we need to show the customer how bad it is, without becoming a fear-monger.
Second, talk in the language and terms they are familiar with. You’re knowledgeable about their business and industry, so talk in terms they can relate to. What are the common issues similar customers have faced and what were the benefits they received from you? Talk in terms of value they can identify with, because if the customer doesn’t see value in your solution, all they see is the cost that can be hard to justify. If your solution is a productivity enhancer, talk about how saving time has impacted the extra time employees have and what they can do with the extra time. Whatever the solution is, show the positive impact others have experienced. That’s reality.
Third, when you give your demo, don’t just point and click. Make the demo a real-life scenario. Scenario based selling is what customers want. They want a demo that solves a specific issue they’re facing, not a generic issue and solution. If you’re showing how a report can be of benefit, build their story into the report showing how the report can alleviate that issue.
Customers want tangible solutions that have clarity. The brain craves simplicity, clarity and the big picture over details. When you can give a demonstration that addresses the specific customer’s concern using the words they use, and they see the benefits, you’re most likely on your way to gaining their commitment.
Now for the last dimension to consider. What is your personality style? The four personality styles, Blue, Gold, Green and Orange all view the customer’s requests for a demo differently. Your Orange and Gold personalities are more fast-paced and expect the customer to decide quickly, like they would. When the customer falls off the radar, they immediately get frustrated. So, for you Orange and Gold people, slow down and ask the right questions to uncover their pain. Your Blues and Greens move at a slower pace. They might develop the need further since they are more patient, but when the customer falls off the radar, they won’t be as proactive as the Golds and Oranges to re-engage them. Blues and Greens will analyze what might have gone wrong. Golds and Oranges more likely will blame the customer for not being aware that they need the solution. They will be more aggressive in pursuing the customer. Understanding your selling style is important if you want to build a strong connection with your prospects and customers.
©2019 Stu Schlackman