Reading between the lines

Every time the customer tells you something, what is the customer actually trying to say?

  1. We have to specific budget or we just want to know how much it will cost.

What is the customer really trying to say here? From experience, most of the time it just means that they’re looking for a solution based on price. Something cheap and easy. Not something “future proof” and “complex”.

2. We don’t see a significant difference between yours and competitor’s solution.

Again, you have probably lost or are on the backfoot at this point and they have now commoditized your solution. The only way around this is focusing on your solution’s value and giving the customer a great Sales/Buying experience – by demonstrating thought leadership and establishing credibility, i.e., teaching them new things.




Why we shouldn’t demo

Customers are not interested in your demo, although they might ask for one, what they’re REALLY interested in is HOW YOU CAN HELP SOLVE THEIR PROBLEMS. They could not care less about your product and your company spiel.

Especially for SaaS, demoing features very quickly goes out of date. The customer here is buying much more than just the product. They are buying support, reliability, performance, integration & security as well.

Prospects are making their purchase decision based on whether they think you understand their problems and you have the knowledge, resources and commitment to solve them.

You need to talk about your experience in their industry, about other customers you’ve worked with and their results (ROI calculator and Jerry Macguire results), about the entire scope of your solution.

Successful SaaS sales people provide context. They explain how the solution helps the business, how it solves problems, why it will make the customer more successful.

The winner doesn’t do it with features alone. They win with the story that goes with them!




Taking back the power!

We had a LM team training session today with almost more SCs than RSEs.

One of the really key points that came up was from Chappo, and he said that “giving a customer a demo is giving them the power to say no”. This made a lot of sense because they can dispute the features and functions of the system till the cows come home (don’t like the buttons, don’t like the colour, your s/w looks the same as the other guys) but if you base your sale on the ROI and business case, it is way more solid and getting them to agree on their numbers means they can’t dispute it.


The Business Case

Like it or not, your prospects are building business cases whether YOU know it or not.

Like it or not, your prospects are building business cases whether THEY know it or not.

This is especially true if the contacts you are engaging with will need to present or “sell” the solution to the people who will sponsor the project and release funds for it. These project sponsors who are either C-level or Board of Directors are usually mainly concerned with $$$ – which equals ROI. How much $$$ will I get back if I spend $$$. This is the gospel truth!

Following the Challenger methodology, the business case should provide the warmer to demonstrate that we understand the “current state of play” and try to work in a bit of emotional drowning as well. The 2nd part should then be about what we can deliver and the benefits that they will get from us. If these 2 parts make sense, the ROI should provide the final knockout punch!

If they prospect is not convinced of the numbers there, that’s even better because it forces them to engage with us and they will need to justify and prove why they don’t agree with the numbers. It forces them to examine themselves which is always a good thing.