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If You’re Tellin' ... You’re Not Sellin'!


This has always been a favorite sales-ism of mine. Intuitively we have known for years that showing up and throwing up doesn’t help you win deals.

Now we have proof. 

Our alliance partner, GONG, has done the research, and the analysis shows that when you pitch features and benefits, you lose!

Your potential customers want your knowledge. They want to know how your product works and why it’s better than what they are doing now. But, when you tell them, they get skittish and run away.

So how do we avoid this trap?

You must learn to give and take. The Gong analysis also shows that top reps talk less than average reps.

It’s not about show and tell, it’s about show and discover. The “demo-discovery” call is becoming increasingly popular with our clients. Often, the first interaction you have with a prospect is a requested demo or a meeting to outline your services. You are expected to show your features and review your benefits.

So do that! Set the stage properly and then each time you show them something STOP and get their perspective.

Set the stage: Most product or service offerings are designed to do specific things. If you’re offering a product that typically solves 3 big problems, then lay them out for your prospect to consider. “Typically, when someone is interested in learning about our services it’s for a couple of reasons, A, B, or C. Any of those resonate with you?”

Understand their priority: They might respond with “all three” or “B & C”. Your response; “OK, thank you. If you had to pick one, which would be most important, and should we start there?”

Get their perspective:  Show them how you solve that issue then ask a simple question like: “What are your thoughts on what I just showed you in comparison to your current process?”

Quantify it. “How would this solution help you?” “Would this allow you to do other things with the efficiency produced?” Obviously, these questions should be customized to your offerings, but you get the picture.

Feature dumping kills deals! Leverage your presentation or demonstration to give them what they asked for but get something in return to help you qualify and quantify this opportunity.

Eric Warner

Eric Warner

Eric Warner, the founder and president of Praxis Growth Advisors, is an award-winning sales trainer, leadership development specialist and accomplished sales process strategist. He has more than 25 years of experience leading teams, building businesses and driving complex sales processes.