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Syndication

The sales landscape has changed as buyers have gained access to more information, and the result for sellers is changing rules for sales tools

Subhanjan Sarkar runs a company called Pitch Link, which helps companies solve the problem of being able to scale by finding good salespeople.  

 

Balance of power

David Cancel wrote a book called Conversational Marketing in which he suggests that the balance of power has shifted from supply to demand and from company to customer. Thirty years ago, selling centered around the ability to mass-produce products in factories. Walmart’s mantra at the time was “stack them high and sell them low.”

The system used to work with the information estimate tree that existed between suppliers and buyers, because the suppliers and makers always had more information available to them than the buyers did. The buyer never knew, prior to the Internet, that certain items were available from other sources for lower prices. 

Over the last 20 years, the buying and selling process has been disrupted. Most of us won’t say it out loud because so much of the information from the previous era becomes irrelevant. 

 

Old things

Subhanjan said that people often challenge him on this premise because they can point to places where the old way of doing things still works. Though it may still work, it is less effective. Email open rates, for example, have dropped from 40 percent to 2.8 percent.People aren’t taking calls from people they don’t know.  

The fundamental shift is this: traditional sales was based on the principle of interruption but buyers don’t want interruptions. This doesn’t mean that reps shouldn’t do their jobs anymore. It simply means that reps must change the way they do things. 

He points out that they are called salespeople for a reason. They aren’t called prospecting people or lead-generation people. But they are expected to fill up a CRM, to write emails, to prospect, and to make phone calls. 

 

Local connections

In traditional sales, people knew each other because they went to school together. They played football or baseball together and then they graduated and one became the manager of the local factory while the other became a salesman. They built trust over the course of 20 years. 

Now people trust brands rather than salespeople. They might eventually trust the salesperson over five to 10 years of working together, but initially, it’s the brand. 

 

PitchLink

As Subhanjan built the company, he understood the story behind the company’s development in great detail. He could explain why the company evolved the way it did because he was in the thick of it. Then, he hired a hot-shot sales guy who understood marketing automation and social selling, but his storytelling wasn’t as authentic. 

The company’s story wasn’t being delivered authentically, so the company discovered a need to standardize its narrative. The more tactical problem was that without face-to-face meetings, the sellers couldn’t make pitches. The presentations got postponed. 

Small organizations that only have three interested prospects will struggle if they aren’t able to meet with two of them for weeks or even months. That’s catastrophic. 

Finally, they discovered that even if they could meet someone within a prospective company, it was often difficult to schedule meetings with the decision-makers. 

How do we establish our product or service or value proposition? And how do we do it so that our prospect isn’t rushed? 

 

Creating experience

PitchLink worked to create an experience that was as close to face-to-face as possible without actually being face-to-face. It could never be exactly the same but they worked to create a system that allowed room for narratives and questions. They built a tool that allows users to link up any kind of file format like a playlist. 

So imagine how you would pitch to a prospect about your product. Just as you would start by greeting the prospect and thanking him for the time, you can record audio or video of the same personalized introduction. The moment the prospect clicks the link, he immediately sees the personalized greeting. 

Your pitch will include the pitch, the scenario, a demo, and a comparison with competitors. All the elements of a typical pitch can be packaged into a single product and sent as a link to your prospects. You can effectively do all the things you would do in person by way of this link. 

 

Freedom

These packaged presentations free your prospects to consume your information when they have the time and mental capacity to do so. They’ll also be free to engage with specific parts of your presentation multiple times if necessary. 

Once they’ve done that, they can decide whether the product is right for them, and then invite others to view it. All invitees see the ame pitch on the same interface and they can ask questions within this interface. All users can see the questions asked and the answers that were given. 

Everyone is always on the same page. 

Clients are busy and focused on other things. The way we sold in the past won’t always work, so we have to evaluate new options and provide them in a way that’s best for the prospects. #SalesEvolution

 

Sales myths

The biggest myth perpetuated on us is that great sales guys close deals. Suhanjan believes that sales are closed by the buyer who finally signs the deal. He believes that sellers must respect that shift. 

The buyer is in control of the process, so we must rethink the way we talk about value transaction. Sales has evolved so much that perhaps we can’t even talk about sales anymore. 

 

“Changing Rules for Sales Tools” episode resources

You can connect with Subhanjan Sarkar on LinkedIn and at PitchLink, where you can also sign up for a free trial. Listeners of The Sales Evangelist podcast will get 120 days free instead of the 90 days that everyone else gets. 

If you haven't connected with me on LinkedIn already, do that at Donald C. Kelly and watch the things I'm sharing there. I’m fairly easy to connect with. Just comment on something about my podcast. Send me an email.

You've heard us talk about the TSE Certified Sales Training Program, and we're offering the first module free as a gift to you. Preview it. Check it out. If it makes sense for you to join, you can be part of our upcoming semester. You can take it on your own or as part of the semester group.

If you and your team are interested in learning more, we'd love to have you join us. Call (561) 578-1729 to speak directly to me or one of our team members about the program.

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Direct download: TSE_1133.mp3
Category:Sales Pitch -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Sales Pitch, Sales Pitch, The Sales EvangelistMany sellers discover that their perfect pitch is not working because, as they work to build value, they are appealing to logic rather than emotion.

We're devoting the whole month to a discussion about building value, and some of today's information comes from the book The Transparency Sale written by Todd Caponey. Todd will visit with us on the podcast in the near future, but today we'll talk about the decision-making process and the role our brains play.

Brain power

Every day, we engage in activities every day that are so routine that we don't even think about them. When we drive to work, we put a seatbelt on without even thinking about it. When we back the car up, we put our arms over the seat beside us and then look backward.

You're able to listen to this podcast while you're driving because you don't even have to think about driving.

Todd talks about three levels of the brain, which you may have heard of before. The reptilian part, the limbic part, and the neocortex.

The reptilian portion is the core or center, and it's the oldest part of the brain. It prompts us to do things without thinking. It drives our instincts. It's the part that prompts us to react to pain without thinking, and it's part of our survival.

The limbic portion is more intricate and it helps deals with feelings and emotions. It helps us make decisions and motivates our behaviors.

The neo- or frontal cortex is the newest part of our brain and it's associated with information and logic. It's the largest part of the brain and it ties with math and reasoning and justification.

[Tweet "We make decisions emotionally and justify them logically, and it's our brain that makes it possible. #brainpower"]

Sales standpoint

We typically show up to our prospect meetings with PowerPoint presentations, charts, spreadsheets, and graphs of all the amazing things our product or service can do. We show up prepared to sell to the customer's neocortex -- the logical part.

Remember, though, that the logic part of our brain isn't where decisions are made. Decisions form in the middle portion of the brain, where our feelings and emotions reside.

You must help people make a decision emotionally, and then justify it logically. You can build value as a sales rep by using stories to tap into the emotion or pain that the prospect is experiencing.

Unless there is some kind of pain, your customer won't make a decision.

Status quo

The reptilian part of our brain wants us to stay where we are. If nothing is harming us, why would we move? Leave things as they are.

Until someone points out the reason we need to make a change and appeals to our emotion, we'll never see a need to move. If a seller use emotion to prompt the customer to move and then help him justify the move logically, he'll be much more likely to make a change.

Tie the emotion and the logic together to help your prospects understand the need to make a change.

Making it work

I recently met a guy who sells water filtration systems in Florida. He begins by asking people whether people drink water, and many people say no because it tastes bad and it's unclean and unhealthy.

He points out that taking a shower in the same water can be just as unhealthy because your skin is your body's largest organ, which presents a pain point for his prospects.

The seller never mentions price or facts about his product. He focuses on the emotion of wanting to be healthy.

Do it with stories or by asking the buyer questions that tap into emotion.

Defining sales

I define sales as helping people persuade themselves to make a change. If we try to persuade them, their guard immediately goes up.

Great sellers leave the buyer in charge of the decision. If your demos are flopping or your presentations aren't working, you're probably focusing too much on logic. Don't sell to the logical part of the brain. Sell to the emotional part.

"Perfect Pitch Is Not Working" episode resources

Grab a copy of the book The Transparency Sale written by Todd Caponey for more information about the role our brains play in the buying process.

This episode is brought to you by the TSE Certified Sales Training Program. I developed this training course because I struggled early on as a seller. Once I had the chance to go through my own training, I noticed a hockey-stick improvement in my performance.

TSE Certified Sales Training Program can help you out of your slump.

If you gave a lot of great presentations and did a lot of hard work, only to watch your prospects choose to work with your competitors, we can help you fix that. The new semester of TSE Certified Sales Training Program begins in April and it would be an absolute honor to have you join us.

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Direct download: TSE_1072.mp3
Category:Sales Pitch -- posted at: 2:41pm EDT

Video is at the forefront of everyone’s mind, including those of us at the Sales Evangelist. We’re launching a YouTube channel called TSE TV and using Instagram as well. On today’s episode, we’ll talk with Deepak Shukla about the 2-minute video pitch that helps generate warm sales calls. Deepak is the founder of the SEO […]

The post TSE 953: The 2-Minute Video Pitch That Helps Me Generate Very Warm Sales Call appeared first on The Sales Evangelist.

Direct download: TSE_953.mp3
Category:Sales Pitch -- posted at: 6:59am EDT

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