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We’ve been working with sales teams for over ten years now, coaching them, introducing some structure to their engagements, and helping them examine where they can drive improvements. The particular area we are so often asked to help with is ‘how do we get started with a new prospect?’ or ‘how do we earn the right to get the conversation going?’

Sales people know they need to ask lots of questions, gather information and gain insights around the prospect’s Drivers and Requirements. But how to earn the right to do this? Most people won’t tell you all about their business, even if they had the time, unless there is a compelling reason to do so.

Your introduction, and the manner in which it is delivered, are important. Clearly stating what your company does in a meaningful way that the customer can understand. And delivered in a voice that sounds as if you are just talking to them, and not dialling the next person on your list.

But a strong concept, or value prop that gets the other person to sit up and listen is also critical. It is normal (and reasonable) for the other person to justify their current position. “I’m fine with my supplier of fuel.” ‘I don’t believe your SEO services can help me find more customers’. ‘I am not interested in saving a few pounds on my phone bill.’ We hear these push backs all the time.

The structure to turn to here is a strong value proposition. This should be:

  • High level, not specific. You are not proposing a solution at this stage. You are looking to engage them with something that is hard to argue with. ‘Our customers tell us that….’
  • Insightful – if it introduces a new or different way of thinking, you have the chance to get a conversation going. ‘A trend we are seeing in this sector is…’
  • Attention grabbing. ‘Recent research shows that…’

If people are to start the journey of change, and maybe consider a different supplier, they need some compelling information. Something to get a debate or a conversation going.

To discuss how to create great Value Propositions, please do get in touch.