Conducting product demonstrations (in-person or virtually) is a common sales strategy. However, not everyone does it right. A colleague shared this real-life example of how NOT to conduct a product demonstration.
An inside sales rep (my colleague’s wife) was teamed up with an account executive to conduct an online demonstration for a new prospect. The account executive took the lead and the inside rep was responsible for demonstrating the actual product.
Forty-five minutes after the online demo began my colleague’s wife was still waiting for her opportunity to explain the product because the account executive had not stopped talking about their company.
To make matters worse, the demo was scheduled for 4:00 PM on a Friday afternoon. At five o’clock, the prospect interrupted the sales person and said, “I have a six o’clock appointment and have to go. Send me information.”
The demo was done.
Attempts to schedule a second appointment to actually demonstrate the product failed and eventually the account executive stopped trying to connect with the prospect.
But here’s the kicker…
My colleague’s wife said that the salesperson was completely oblivious to the fact that he was the cause of the problem. He blamed the prospect, called him a time-waster, and complained about being cut off and unable to deliver the full demonstration.
He had absolutely no idea that he was at fault.
Don’t let this happen to you.
Delivering an effective sales demonstration does not mean you talk incessantly about your product or your company. Your prospects are too busy to have their time wasted with this approach.
Skip the background about your company, your clients, how long you have been in business and anything else that is seller-centric.
Instead, focus on showing exactly how your product, service or solution will help your prospect solve a business problem. Keep it brief and to the point and you will close more deals.
A friend of mine recently attended a trade show and heard a variety of lame sales lines all intended to get him to make a buying decision. In an email, he suggested that I write a post about lame sales lines people use in order to capture a prospect’s interest and increase their sales.
I thought this would be a fun post to write so here are a dozen lame questions and lines that make sales people look stupid. Warning: there is a serious dose of sarcasm in this post.
“What will it take to earn your business?”
Uh, maybe you could act like a professional and show me how I’m going to benefit from your product or service.
“Is price the only thing holding you back?”
No, but the fact that you think price is the most important issue shows your complete lack of sales ability.
“Here’s the phone, why not call your wife right now and talk to her?”
“Don’t you want to save money?”
No, I’m an idiot. But, please insult my intelligence again by asking another stupid question like this.
“If I could show you (insert benefit), would you be interested?”
How about you ask me a question or two so you can figure out how your product will help me?
“This price won’t last long.”
Really? You can’t come up with anything better than that?
“At this price, we’ll be sold out by the end of the day.”
Sure…and your new shipment arrives tomorrow morning.
“I don’t think we’ll be offering this incentive next week.”
Yeah, I bet it will be better so maybe I’ll wait.
“What do you know about us?”
Didn’t your CEO get sued for something?
“What do I need to do to get you into…”
You’re not “getting” me into anything with that approach.
“Have you heard about us?”
No and do you really think this question is going to make me want to listen to your sales pitch?
“What are your needs?”
Why don’t you ask me some good questions that take a bit of thought and effort and I’ll tell you.
What about you? What lame or cheesy sales lines have you heard? I love to hear them so please feel free to add them in the comments section.
A friend sent me an email exchange he recently had with a sales rep.
We are planning to build a new house in 2012. The goal is to make it as energy efficient as possible. The back roof is unobstructed, and would be dedicated to solar. Not interested in Micro-fit, and I don’t think we quite want to go off-grid, but am hoping to be able to create a system that will offset a large portion of our electrical usage, and will serve us if need be during power failures, etc. I don’t really understand the process well, but I’m envisioning a panel-battery system that draws off the grid whenever necessary. Is this something you can help us with?
I’m out of town on Monday, but if someone could call me later in the week that would be great (telephone number was included here).
Here is the sales person’s response:
PLS contact me,
Sales person’s name
I was stunned!
This guy’s response was lazy and pathetic and it demonstrated a complete lack of professionalism and initiative.
Especially when you consider that my friend has budgeted $50-80,000 for this purchase!
I’m sure he gets frequent requests for information from people who aren’t serious but my friend is definitely serious about moving forward with this project.
Shouldn’t he be the one to set up a time to call rather than make my friend call him or make a random call in hopes that my friend will be available to talk?
This guy just doesn’t get it…
Could your team benefit from the concepts in this blog? Feel free to reach out if I can help. 905-633-7750 Kelley@Fearless-Selling.ca