Our Theory When It Comes to Presentations – Whether to Say or Ask Something….or Not?

Many of you ask “how do I present this product?” when it comes to markets.  At 32M, we will provide you all of the tools and training required to be successful at selling locations.  But often, the difference maker in whether or not you nail that new account or upgrade that location to a market is how you present.  This includes asking the right questions or making bold statements, especially asking the hard questions.

So, the fair question is: “How do you know the line between asking a question or saying something that is out of bounds and not?”  Here is my theory and I call it “The Say It Triangle”.  Let me be more specific by first defining the three sides of the triangle.

  1. Side One – Professional: Is the question professional?  Specifically, is it a professional topic or not and is it asked in a professional manner?
  2. Side Two – Ethical:  Does the topic put anyone in a situation to have to consider their moral compass?
  3. Side Three – Factual:  Is the question completely true or is seeking an answer or addressing a subject that is truthful?

So, how does it work?  If the statement or question is professional and ethical, it is factual.  If it is factual and ethical, it is professional.  If it is professional and factual, it is ethical.  If it meets this model, ASK the question or make the statement.

What is the opposite of this?  Let me give you some examples:

  1. Tip toeing around issues.
  2. Hiding the truth.
  3. Not getting all the facts.
  4. Losing the sale.
  5. Losing confidence of your customer.
  6. Not capturing the impulse they had when they said “come see me”.
  7. The customer can’t wait for you to leave because they are bored in your presentation.

So let’s address point #7.  Based upon what I have outlined here in the Say It Triangle, would I ask the question “Sir, you don’t seem interested today thus it tells me that I have not captured what you are interested in.  Why did first want to meet with me?”  Would I say this?  YES.  Why, because the sale is not going anywhere and last I looked, zero times anything is zero.  Now, if it was a current client, I may change a word or two but the reality is, it would be no less than “We have been servicing you for a long time and to ensure I always provide you with the best solutions, I felt it was best for me to come in and show you how I can improve your work place and my solution to it.  Have you found any part of this upgrade proposal of interest?”  Failure to means that at some point, a competitor will come in and get their attention that you failed to.

You may say “I don’t want to be pushy or aggressive?”  Being truthful, factual and ethical is not being pushy or aggressive.  It is clarity, thorough, complete, decisive, etc.  Last I looked, sales often isn’t comfortable.  If you are comfortable in sales, you likely are not pushing yourself or your customers and your results reflect that.   The previous sentence is an exact example of the Say It Triangle:  It is factual – it is ethical – so those of you questioning whether or not it is professional, take note.  By failing to to either push yourself or your customers, you likely do not create value or urgency around you or your product.  And failure to create measured value or urgency, where the customer says “I want to move ahead today” means no sales.

In selling markets, to be specific, a lack of creating value means the locations say “I will stick with vending” or “I will stick with my current provider – they have done a good job”.  Vending, I stress, is not a bad business or solution….in locations that dictates vending should be the solution.  But don’t let that be pre-determined. And certainly don’t let the location say “we should only do vending”.   If there is interest, it can be a great location when presented the right way.  And the right way often includes coming in and asking tough questions to elicit the true needs of the organization so you create value around your product providing solutions to those needs.

So, ask yourself, in the last few presentations, have you created value or urgency for your market solution? Your company?  Your SELF?  If not, meaning you are not having success in selling markets, I would suggest  you look long and hard at your presentation skills and ask yourself “am I saying what needs to be said or asking what needs to be asked?”.

Make it a great day and create success at every opportunity.

Patrick

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