Is the conversation that you want to have with your dream client around something vital? Is it something so important, so necessary that it should command their attention?
In some rare cases, your product may rise to the level of being vital, demanding your dream client’s time, attention, and resources. This may be true when they are struggling to obtain whatever it is you sell, but less likely if they are already getting what you sell from your competitor. When the latter is true, when they already have what they need, the tiny improvement your product might produce is not a critical issue.
Service issues and failures can disrupt a business, creating a strategic issue in an area where one would not exist if their current partner was executing well enough. Unless the day-to-day issues rise to the level that make it worth suffering through the switching costs, you aren’t like to displace your competitor by promising a better experience when your prospect has learned to live with the challenges that happen in the normal course of business.
Not a Few Pennies
You might be able to produce a better turn on the investment your prospect makes, and you may be able to reduce their pricing and show them some savings. There are, believe it or not, some salespeople and sales organizations that still lead with a lower price as a way to reduce their prospect’s costs as a way to improve the ROI. Sophisticated, savvy business people aren’t easily lured into changing partners for a lower price because they know that they are taking money out of their solution. Because saving a few pennies doesn’t move the needle, it isn’t a vital issue (and when saving a few pennies is vital, your prospect may not be doing well).
What makes something vital is how important it is to producing the necessary or critical outcomes your prospect needs. The things that rise to being vital tend to be the more strategic outcomes, things that contribute to the goals and the direction of the people who decide when—and if—they are going to entertain the idea of changing what they are doing.
When you show someone your product in the first five minutes of a call, you have identified yourself as someone who wants to talk about something non-vital.
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Filed under: Sales Acumen