When it comes to your technology proposals, help the prospect visualize the solution, utilize video and offer fewer options.
Nothing happens until something is sold. So, how does one increase their efficiency in the sales process? Let me share three ideas with you that I’ve seen highly successful salespeople utilize for their sales proposals.
1. Qualify and ask questions that help the prospect visualize using your solution.
When you first encounter an opportunity it’s unknown whether or not the suspect wants what you have to offer or if you can provide them with a solution for what they desire. Qualifying the suspect will help convert them from a suspect to a prospect.
Be prepared with qualifying questions that will lead the potential prospect to choose one of your solutions. For instance, they may be building a 10,000-square-foot new home. In your new home, your master bedroom is on the first floor. That was probably chosen to limit you have to go up and down stairs. Is that correct?
Prospect response: Yes. Would it be advantageous for you to be able to press a button or say a command such as “Goodnight” to turn off all the lights in the home including the lights on the second floor without having to climb the stairs to assure yourself that no lights were left on? Prospect response: Yes, that would be great.
You’ve accomplished three things in this one question. You have established their interest in lighting control or systems integration. You have them visualizing living in their new home using your solution, and you just got your first trial close. You’re getting them used to saying, “yes.”
2. Use video in your technology sales proposal to tell your WHY story.
People purchase from people they like. A mistake that many salespeople make is not spending the appropriate time selling themselves and their company.
They focus too much on the product or the brand name to close the sale. There is an old adage: Sell yourself, your company, then your product. I prefer a slight modification of that saying: sell yourself, your company and your solution’s benefit to the customer. Develop your story of who you are and why you do what you do. Explain your company’s mission and why it is the best thing since sliced bread for your customers.
The power of video cannot be underestimated. As part of your proposal process, record this in a one to two-minute video. When using a modern proposal tool you can add this video prior to your scope of work and body (product and service detail).
This video can be by the salesperson or the owner of the business. It can be a standard video for all prospects or for large projects, you may choose to record an additional ending to the video describing how their specific home will operate with your solution installed. This can help personalize the prospect’s experience and help them to get to know you better.
3. Use the prescription method of selling and provide a tech solution. Providing lots of options delays decisions. That’s what change orders are for. Close the sale.
When you go to the doctor, they ask you questions and run tests in order to diagnose your problem and recommend a solution. Prescription selling is based on the same methodology.
During qualification, you are gathering facts, uncovering pain points and developing a budget. Upon completion of qualification, the salesperson will go about the task of creating a proposal that fits the prospects’ needs and desires and fits in the agreed-upon budget range.
The days of the “custom install” business are over. The industry has grown into the “systems integration” business. Most successful integrators choose a limited set of brands they know to work well together, provide a good margin and solve their design needs. This is scalable and repeatable.
Some integrators provide lots of options for the prospect to choose from. Does the doctor do that? Typically not. Typically they say here is a prescription or we are going to recommend that we perform a specific surgery. After all, they are the experts, right? Well, so are you.
You are a professional and know best which solution is right for the project. Make your recommendation and close the sale. You can always upgrade and provide additional choices after the initial contract is signed and the deposit has been accepted. That’s what change orders are for.
This article first appeared on SSI sister site CEPro.com.
Tom Coffin is President and CEO of Simply Reliable.