Almost in every industry, all B2B sales team members have been told times and again to sell the value of their products and services- not the features of their offerings, which is one of the most important factors that constitute the essence of any successfully delivered B2B sales pitch.It takes an average of 18 calls to actually connect with a buyer. Click To Tweet
This is because when you call it value, benefits, or outcomes, the message to sale is clear, which is-
tell the prospective customer the reasons they need the offering, but just not all of the things that the product and services can do.
And as one of the most popular vendors of Salesforce Alternative CRM solutions, we consider this as a piece of sound advice, since even the Harvard Business School’s famous economist and professor at, Theodore Levitt once aptly said in one of his lectures: “customers want ¼-inch holes, not ¼-inch drills.”
A survey of advice on common sales pitch can lead to an outline like:
What is the issue that you want to solve?
How big is the problem(s)?
Why should a business care about the problem you solve?
Who are the people that your business serve?
What success or results you had?
Now this can be considered as a great outline for creating a successful B2B sales pitch since we discussed in one of our recent other blogs on supporting the consultative sales process that thinking about the prospect’s pain points and issues should be the beginning of any sales process, and outlines like this are also often accompanied with the advice to solve the greatest issues they can for their prospective customers.
Referring to the quote that we stated above, well, selling the holes (instead of the drill) is just the beginning of the thinking process- why do customers really want that hole or what big universal human need are you solving by helping to create the hole for your customers?
Now the danger with the advice to solve the biggest problem of the prospect by focusing on the value is that it is easy to take it too far, by which we imply that that sales reps can quickly find themselves with a jargon-filled, generic pitch that at best leaves the prospective customers unable to connect or at its worse makes the sales pitch sound like a flimsy promise which makes the prospect suspicious about the reps and their company.
This happens because the salespersons get so focused on elevating the problem and selling the value that they actually forget to say what the offering is or how it can work for their customers.
Actually, as one the most popular vendors of business CRM software solutions, we have found that even though it seems like common sense, nevertheless, too many B2B sales pitches leave out this critical information that ultimately hinders the sales process, especially when it comes to selling complex products or services.
Hence here are some of the most important elements that you must keep in your mind while making a B2B sales pitch for your offering:
Get specific about the problem
Well, solving the biggest problems can always seem to be attractive. After all the Big Problems- things like improving quality, saving time and money, adding comfort and ease, or eliminating barriers, are the factors that have always motivated people to buy things from the marketplace.
Let us as an example imagine a commercial for a bar of dishwashing soap.
The dish soaps in most commercials claim to save the homemaker’s time, by eliminating the burden of scrubbing dishes.
Now, every dish soap commercials will promise some sort of technological advancements over their competition that makes the soap capable of eliminating dirt and food directly from the utensils with a mere swipe.
Now, this is a very good sales pitch, as it connects to a Big Problem- every one of us wants more time and less housework.
Nevertheless, this a specific commercial can even narrow on another pain point specifically – a sink filled with dirty dishes, whereby the solitary visual image of that dirty sink full of pots and pans can cause the ad viewer’s back start to ache. Hence by the time the viewer embarks on the vision of finding a better future—a clean and sparkling kitchen, the viewer has already started to imagine what they will do with that time they have regained.
Hence always remember – Without the detailed pain points, and issues all sales pitches become the same.
Now dish soaps are simple and familiar products and it is tough to imagine any dish soap commercial that would not highlight the problem of stuck-on-food and sink full of dishes.
However, when we look at more complex sales, especially the B2B ones, we have often seen that sales reps skip from the Big Problem right into the vision of a better future, without even trying to dig into the specific pain points faced by the prospective customers, whereby as we said without a specific pain point all sales pitches becomes the same.
But, on the other hand, with an unambiguous pain point, a sales pitch not only differentiates itself from the other sales pitches but doing this also makes the sales rep demonstrate expertise, which can only happen by just correctly identifying the problems and its origins, which immediately also enhances the credibility-factor in the minds of the prospects that you might be the one to solve it.
Show how it works
Now once you have named the problem with as much granularity and specificity as you can it is time to show how exactly your offering is going to help to deliver on that vision.
For example, going back to that dish soap commercial and thinking about those and unwashed dirty dishes. The scriptwriter does not just call them grimy, dirty dishes, rather he tells you about baked-on lasagna, messy sauces, and gooey cheese. This is because, for anyone who has ever done dishes, knows that these troublemakers are their biggest pain points and would appreciate that the dish soap manufacturer considered them.
Now we have observed that many sales reps are afraid to “give away” their secret sauce, or at times afraid to reveal too much about how they do what they do.
Nevertheless in a B2B sale for a complex product or service, always remember your customers are most likely already have quite a bit of domain knowledge and so they need granular and tangible information about your product in order to correctly assess it.
Therefore, giving detailed information about how your offerings really work not only helps to build your expertise but understanding that you clearly know how to solve the problem of the prospective customers also builds trust and confidence, since they now know that you are the only one who can deliver, so in such a scenario the prospect will never pull back the curtain.
Use plain language
Never in order to provide details of how your offerings work, use a sales pitch that can become a hard-to-understand word salad filled with technical jargon or esoteric descriptions with confusing words. Rather focus on explaining the features and processes of your product and services in plain language that everyone can understand easily.
As the Center for Plain Language which is a non-profit organization defines plain languages as:
“A communication that your audience or readers can understand the first time they hear or read it.”
In fact, they even state that plain language is not removing or just simplifying information, but rather it must focus on improving communication.
So sales presentations or B2B sales pitches should proving information to their prospects in a manner that boosts communication since prospective customers are never going to purchase what they just cannot understand.
In fact, the Center for Plain Language has listed out six criteria for plain language, which can be used as a key for creating a great B2B sales pitch, and help businesses to make sales presentations that can bring value to their brands that include:
Use visual explanations
Finally, in addition to plain language using visual explanations, that can act as fog-lifters helps to speed up the sales process while continuing to build trust for the brand in the mind of the prospective customers in the marketplace.
Hence in your B2B sales pitch, as one of the most popular vendors of easy to use CRM tools, we advise the readers to use visual explanations to show how their offerings can fit into the prospect’s business process, or what systems that the brand is offering will connect with or even how the customer experience of your offering will be different from the other once they purchase your product or services.
We say this since we have seen that there are many sales reps who are afraid to dive into details, and they hence want to keep the conversation at a high level, just focusing on solving the Big Problem of their prospects or create a vivid vision of the future world.
Now, while these are indeed important parts of the story making process in a B2B sales pitch, nevertheless they are not enough to make a sale.
This is because to make a sale of a complex product or service in the B2B landscape, sales reps need to show expertise and trust by naming pain points with absolute specificity and provide granular details to how your solution works with engaging visuals accompanied by plain language since as the old English adage goes ” a picture is worth a thousand words”.