Congratulations! Your navigation through countless virtual demos and presentations is now 2020 hindsight as you’ve grown comfortable with whatever online tool your company utilizes (Teams, Zoom, GoToMeeting, Webex, etc.). You’ve probably set your achievement goals for 2021, but with all of the focus on how to best execute your demo and present in a virtual setting, do remember how to best CONNECT your demo to your audience using Discovery techniques in a virtual world. I’ve noticed a lack of blog attention to this crucial skill, so I’ve dedicated this article to describe some of the best tips and techniques for Discovery in today’s reality.
Perhaps you can relate to a situation from your past. You are eight years old and attending a large family holiday dinner. It is time to eat, and as the adults and teens find their way to the big table, you see it. The dreaded children’s table. Your older brother or sister gives you that smug look as they sit down with the adults. It isn’t until years later that you finally get a seat at the big table. For today’s technology companies, presales leadership often feels like that eight-year-old child when it comes to having a seat at the product roadmap, sales forecast, resource analysis, and planning tables. What a travesty! It is time that everybody grew up and realized that presales leadership belongs to each of those tables.
If you can relate to this sentiment, consider attending a webinar I will be leading on the topic Wednesday, February 17th. In the meantime, let’s examine those tables and why it is in every organization’s best interest to get them there.
In-person demos have disappeared since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Pre-sales and Sales professionals are headlong in building bridges to customers using virtual platforms, but many of these virtual demos are missing some key components that will transform the event from a good demo to a winning demo. It is stating the obvious that in-person demo practices don’t all translate to virtual. That said, many professionals are executing virtual demos like they did in-person.
When your executives take the virtual stage at your upcoming Sales Kickoff (SKO), a story needs to be told. Here’s the scenario. 2020 has been an unprecedented year and your company is not only standing, it is roaring! Your key metrics are healthy and your forecast is solid. Now here’s your choice. You can either present the usual, charts, graphs and numbers or, you can captivate and engage your sales and client success organizations with a story that paints an image of your past and your future. Guess which one will be more effective?Read More »Your Virtual Sales Kickoff NEEDS to Tell a Story
Virtual Sales Kick Off (SKO) season is about to begin and, if you’re like many powerful sales organizations, you’re looking for big results post-session. In the past, your on-site events were filled with energy and sessions that motivated the team. Here are some ideas to consider that we have found will add some flavor to meat and potato virtual, SKO breakout sessions.
The way some companies approach a presentation or demonstration sounds a bit like a bad date, the line goes, “Enough about me, let’s talk about you… what do you think about me?“
[Bob] It happens all the time. We show a group of stakeholders how easy and helpful our software can be, but their feedback is “it seems too complicated.” How can that be? Certainly, the selection team doesn’t want us to take away any of that great functionality?
Modern, comprehensive applications may seem simple to us but easily appear too complicated in the eyes of a stakeholder. In all fairness, many prospective clients are simply trying to judge the ability of their people to learn and operate your applications efficiently. They are trying to predict the impact that your solution will have on their operations, and they are using your product demonstration to help them make that prediction.
There is a surge of firms offering virtual soft-skills training since the onset of Covid-19 and Social Distancing. If you are considering scheduling your precious and expensive resources into one of these courses, here is a list of nonnegotiables for anyone offering this form of training.
✓Proven Satisfaction Metrics
Courses designed initially for in-person events will not be effective in a virtual setting unless they are entirely re-engineered. Insist on customer satisfaction metrics that compare their virtual training with their on-site offerings. Require that they back up those statistics with their sample size. Anyone can claim a high satisfaction index from one or two clients that are “friendlies.” The satisfaction scores must be within two percent of each other to warrant further consideration of their offering.
You’ve been directed to work from home. You’ve done it before but, now it will be for an extended time. In this blog, we’ll provide you quick and effective ways to have the right setup, tools, techniques to increase your effectiveness with team members, clients, and prospects. For client-facing roles, we will also provide tips for building momentum in the sales process that simply aren’t achievable in traditional, face-to-face encounters. Shockingly, you will learn how to become MORE productive than when you were in the office! The following are excerpts from our recently released video course, “HomeOffice2Win!”Read More »12 Tips for Home Office Success
Here’s a scenario we’ve all experienced. It is three days before a key demo, and you need the sponsor at the client to follow through on her promise to schedule discovery calls. The problem is, she isn’t responding to your emails or voice-mails. As a pre-sales professional, you know the importance of making those connections and getting your critical questions answered. The salesperson on the account is too busy or distracted to help. What do you do? The answer is all in the subject line…Read More »Melting an Ice-Cold Sponsor With Your Subject Line