Identifying the How, Why, and What of Sales Prospecting
Nothing frustrates decision makers more than talking to an eager salesperson who simply doesn’t convey any valuable information. Many sales agents know how to “talk the talk,” but when it comes to demonstrating a real command of knowledge and insight about their products, industry, and other value-add details, many of them flounder.
For sales agents to really wow prospects and deliver powerful, insightful sales pitches, they should first learn to dedicate themselves to identifying the how, why, and what of their conversation before ever interacting with a potential client.
Doing so will enable salespeople to follow a road map, complete with industry research and impactful insights, to the particular prospect’s business challenges. When salespeople prepare beforehand, they appear more professional, reliable, and worthy of respect to the decision maker, thereby increasing the likelihood of completing a sale.
So how exactly does one identify the how, why, and what of a foolproof sales pitch? Let’s take a look:
How are you going to make this prospect sign on the dotted line? This is where you find the unique angle of your sales pitch. After all, no two sales conversations should sound the same. By making your conversation different than the cookie-cutter sales pitches that sound more like scripts and talk tracks than genuine conversations, you will likely gain a competitive edge. By conducting industry research about your prospect’s specific industry and identifying challenges, trends, advancements, predictions, and forecasts, you can more aptly pinpoint how your product or services can augment the prospect’s business.
Why would your prospect feel compelled to choose your company over another? Conduct some research to gather insights about their company so you can step inside their shoes. (Search the Hoover's database for a start.) After all, you may think your sales pitch really packs a punch, but it takes perspective to understand how an executive is likely to receive it. Keep in mind that the prospect has a limited amount of time to listen to your spiel, so, if they're not familiar with your company, you must be able to quickly articulate its value to keep them engaged.
Discovering the “why” of your sales pitch is critical because it enables you to get inside the mind of your prospect. In doing so, you’ll be able to exude more empathy and understanding over the phone or in person, endearing you to your prospect as a trusted advisor.
What’s your end goal? Don’t forget to pinpoint your desired results before engaging with a prospect. Identifying your desired outcome in more specific terms than simply “landing the sale” will help you guide the conversation, inject a sense of urgency, and address only the key elements that are most relevant to that particular prospect.
For example, perhaps you not only want the potential client to sign the dotted line, but you want to evoke a real partnership with this prospect, one that will flourish into a long-lasting relationship. This will direct you to make your approach more personal. In another instance, perhaps your goal is to leave such a powerful impression on your prospect that they then tout your brand, raising awareness by word-of-mouth. Outlining specific goals for each and every sales call or meeting will ensure your investment in the exchange, which prospects will surely appreciate.