Why Selling Your Customer What They Ask For Won’t Always Get You The Sale

“Every great sales coach will tell you, if you want to sell more – you have to get inside your prospect’s head and get to the heart of their problem. But, can you always trust what your prospect tells you? Short answer: No. While those sales coaches are right, you do need to ask questions and find out what your prospects want, they don’t tell you that the real problem you’re trying to solve is often several levels deeper than what your prospect shares. Why? Because the questions you’ve been trained to ask like “what problems are you struggling with” cue scripted responses from your prospect! This is just not going to cut it anymore. Questions like these are too familiar. Dozens of other salespeople have come knocking before you, asking the same questions and your prospect has already mentally prepared the answers they think you’ll be looking for. No, if you want to get to the core of what your audience needs, it requires that you change your perspective on what questions you should be asking. Better yet, instead of just asking questions, how about providing insight! In step one of the Insight Selling Method we talk about building rapport to create a connection with your prospect by listening and then creating a clear picture of the problem based on their answers, all in real time. This does more than just make them feel valued and appreciated. It allows you to really get to the core of what they need. Insight selling allows you to connect with your audience as a human-to-human instead of speaker-to-listener. Show you are listening by finally ending your questions, and then painting a clear picture of their problem (that they may not be aware of themselves!). Next, once there is an agreement, you can discuss options for potential solutions. The more you do this, the more your prospects will trust you because most salespeople are ONLY asking them questions…while providing little insight (only 17% of B2B Sales Professionals do). But not you, you’re different… You have a new perspective, one that going to take you places in 2019! If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to send me a quick message. ...

The Outdated Sales Method That’s Holding You Back

“Everyone focuses on the presentation, but the main goal is communication, so stop merely presenting and begin effectively communicating your ideas to your audience.” – Brian Williams When a new sales trainee comes to me and says “I’m just not getting the results I know I’m capable of,” 99% of the time I know what the problem is before I even take a look at their strategy. It’s the same mistake that over 80% of all the sales people in the world, including veteran professionals, are making each day that holds them back from creating the income they dream of. What’s this career-crippling mistake, you ask? It’s selling your product or service instead of selling the outcome. Too many sales presentations focus on this old, outdated method they were taught years ago when they first got into the sales game. In fact, over 50% of the sales training programs available today are still teaching this same strategy. But there’s a different way. A better way. And it begins with flipping the “product/service-focused presentation” formula on it’s head. Creating engaging presentations that drive results is no longer about telling your audience what you think they need to know, it’s about answering what they WANT to know. This can be a difficult mental switch to make, because we’re all experts at our own industry, but it will make a difference not only in the engagement of the audience, but in the results you’ll get when it’s time for them to write a check. At the end of the day, your audience is here to solve a problem and a viable solution is truly the ONLY information they’re interested in. Your goal should not be to spill facts, figures, and features but to walk them through the transformation they’ll go through by using your product or service. If you can successfully get them to picture themselves in the after state of using your product/service, you’ll increase your chances of making the sale.  Note: This is exactly why when you enter model homes they are beautifully and fully furnished with cookies baking in the oven, not filled with whiteboards of facts and figures. And the reality is, if you effectively sell your audience (prospect) on the outcome, they’ll naturally have questions about the product or service. This is where you can step in and share your knowledge…not before. Here are 4 quick ways to tell if you presentation is prospect-focused: Reworking your presentations to focus on your audience (prospect) will be an absolute game-changer. It’s time to level up your sales game and get closer to the million-dollar mark by taking on this fresh perspective when creating your next presentation. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to send me a quick message. ...

Don’t Waterboard Your Audience

Have you been here? About one third of the way through your pitch, you look around the room and your audience is drowning in the flood of your words. You can tell you’ve lost them long before you’ve even gotten to the point. They are doodling, looking out the window, or flipping through the pages of your handouts. They are not listening to you and your message is dead on arrival. It could be that you are saying too much. Your audience cannot keep up. There is a downpour of information, and they don’t see how the pieces fit together. Take a Test – If you have experienced this dead-eyed audience, or even suspect it, I have an exercise you can try.  Get together with an acquaintance who doesn’t know too much about your business. Ask if he will help you out by listening to your pitch and answering the following questions. Then, tell him your elevator pitch. Keep it to about one minute. Then ask him these 3 questions: What does your company do? How can your company make life better for its clients? How would a potential client take the next step to purchase? Your Test Results – If your acquaintance cannot answer those three questions clearly and precisely, it could be that you have not honed your sales message down to exactly what you do, your benefits, and how to “place an order.” You may be communicating too much ancillary information at the expense of the vital stuff. This lack of targeted focus on your part is probably the culprit that is losing your audience to daydreams and doodles during presentations. Prepping to Retake the Test – Let me show you how you can change your audience’s perspective by employing a tool called a storyboard. The storyboard is a process that will help you organize the points of your sales message, allowing you to intensely focus your points so you don’t drown them in too much information. A clear, concise message will compel your audience to conform to your expectations because they will see that you understand their needs and can deliver a solution that solves a problem for them and ultimately makes a positive impact on their revenue. The Formula – A good storyboard is made of of three main points. It begins with an introduction that tells your audience where you are going. It smoothly transitions from point to point, always reminding the audience where you are ultimately going. And where are you going? You are going to demonstrate how you can solve a problem for them. And, in conclusion, you will wrap up the points with a clear call to action that helps the audience fully understand the next step to take to buy your product or service. See the infographic below to help you visualize the storyboard process.  Pass the Test with Higher Results – As you prepare for your next big sales presentation, take the time to test your elevator pitch with an acquaintance (or several). Get their feedback to ensure you know your messaging is refined enough that it can be reduced, and repeated by others who have only heard it once. If you don’t pass the elevator pitch test with a score of 100%, follow the storyboard formula so you can ace the next presentation. ...

Read About Perspectivity on VoyageDallas.com!

Earlier this month, my interview with VoyageDallas.com went live on their site. In our chat, I got to share a little bit of my story, how Perspectivity came to be, how amazing it is to be co-running this business with my wife, and a few other tid-bits. VoyageDallas is a new and flourishing digital magazine that focuses on highlighting what’s happening in the Dallas community. Tasha and I were honored to be featured on their site, and if you’re looking for something to do in Dallas, or maybe a little local inspiration, give VoyageDallas a look. Enjoy! -Brian WIlliams   VD: Brian, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today. BW: I graduated with a Computer Science degree from Texas A&M, which is where I met Tasha, who also has a technical degree from A&M. I then worked for many tech companies, mostly in Silicon Valley. Companies like Cisco, Nortel, Motorola, and Ericsson and several other tech startups. I was in Software Design/Test, then Technical Marketing, and finally Technical Pre-Sales. My last corporate position was Head of Global Business Strategy, which was a technical pre-sales organization. After 12 countries and 20 years, I began to see inferior technology win against superior ones, because their sales pitch or sales messaging was clear, compelling, and concise, but that’s very difficult to tech organizations to accomplish. I saw this problem over and over again, sometimes surprised, other times frustrated, but the problem was the same. I have a strange combination of technical skills and competence, but I also like people, presentations and effective communication. So… I saw an opportunity. I left corporate America, and started Perspectivity. A sales messaging and consulting firm that works primarily with technology companies. Our clients include AT&T, Cisco, and Citi, but we also work with many small businesses. Our 6-Step system is one that simplifies a rather complex process, clarifies complicated products or services, and increases revenue. VD: Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way? BW: A smooth road…. LOL! Said No Entrepreneur…EVER. Struggle #1: My first partnership was a disaster, just like the stories you’ve heard about not having partners or being VERY selective, that was me. It was a train wreck and I would advise anyone considering a partner, please read the Partnership Charter by David Gage. Save yourself the pain. I should have known I was in trouble when I recommended we both read this book and pay for their assessment, and he didn’t want to do either. Struggle #2: Once I survived that ordeal, I was off on my own, then later joined by the best business partner I could ever have, my wife! The business began to grow but my money management and tax planning skills didn’t. What a pain this was, having to do all accounting, invoicing, payroll, saving, taxes, 940, 941, W-2, FUTA, SUTA, what the what!! It was crazy. I now have two companies that do all of the above and more, and I love them for it! VD: Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Perspectivity Sales Consulting – what should we know? BW: We help technology companies grow revenue by clarifying their sales messaging by implementing our 6-Step system inside of their sales and/or marketing organization. We specialize in creating effective sales messaging, sales pitches, sales presentation, and effective sales conversations so your target market will Believe, Buy, and Bite (can explain later). We are known for our unique ability to understand technology at a deep level, and also understand sales and people at the same time. We then created a 6-Step system that makes you appear that you have the same set of skills, not just one or the other which is most typical. We are most proud of seeing clients go from struggling to succeeding. There is nothing more rewarding and more sad at the same time, because that means we’re done and have to leave them! What sets us apart. The power and simplicity of our 6-Step system and how much time we’ve spent on creating an online university, a book, and a process that is sensitive to the science of how adults learn and the psychology of how they make buying decisions. VD: Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role? BW: My biggest support, cheerleader, teammate and super smart business partner is my wife. She has skills that I don’t and we compliment each other well. She sees what I can’t see and has a very high emotional intelligence (EQ). She has this naturally but has also been trained and certified. She understands people and what makes them tick, and what shuts them down. So she is responsible for helping teams function more productively by understanding each other better. She also handles all Client Care. It’s her unique ability to hear and respond to their needs with precision that makes them feel loved and supported by our company. She also co-wrote our first book and at this point, she is a fully qualified CEO (Committed to Exceeding Obstacles) because she has gone through some tough times, but has always believed and supported, I owe her dearly and have a specific plan on how I will repay! ...