ROI Selling Blog

Never Lead with a Sales Demo

Posted on Oct 28, 2014 9:00:00 AM by Darrin Fleming

 

Recently we wrote a blog post, “When Demos Sabotage the Sale,” about the dangers of showing a demo too early in the sales cycle. At least one reader reached out to us to ask a logical question -- if you’re not going to lead with the demo, what should you lead with?

In our view, the answer has something to do with that old quote, “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.” The best opportunities can be found when initial conversations are centered around the prospect’s business problem. Both the salesperson and the prospect need to understand that business problem before they can enter into a mutually beneficial relationship.

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Topics: sales demo, B2B marketing

Why is ROI Important to Marketing?

Posted on Oct 21, 2014 5:00:00 AM by Darrin Fleming

Do you know the difference between “ROI” (return on investment) and “ROMI” (return on marketing investment)?

Occasionally we’ve noticed that some of our discussions about ROI have led to some confusion among our readers. I suspect this is because when people hear “ROI” and “marketing” they primarily think of “return on marketing investment” (ROMI).

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Topics: ROI, General B2B Marketing, Marketing, value, ROMI

How to Establish the Optimal Price for Your B2B Offering

Posted on Oct 15, 2014 5:00:08 AM by Darrin Fleming

Recently we wrote a blog post, “Don’t Make This Mistake When Value Pricing,” about the mistake of using a value calculator to set price. Interestingly, the ideas in this post sparked a spirited discussion in one LinkedIn group about all kinds of issues related to pricing. One of those issues was how exactly pricing should be set (another issue was who should set price, sales or marketing, which we will address in another post).

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Topics: ROI, General B2B Marketing, B2B marketing, pricing, offering, value pricing

What Einstein Exposed About B2B Marketing and Sales

Posted on Oct 7, 2014 5:00:00 AM by David Svigel

"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." -- Albert Einstein

As I ponder that quote, I wonder how many marketing messages and sales conversations lack simple explanation. I bet it’s more than I can guess (and right now I’m guessing a number ending in lots of zeroes). And without that simple explanation, prospects quickly become disinterested.

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Topics: B2B marketing, Quantifying a Value Proposition, prospects, revenue, cost savings, Value Proposition

What is the Value of Your Reputation in B2B?

Posted on Sep 30, 2014 5:00:00 AM by Darrin Fleming

Years ago, people used to say that, “No one ever got fired for buying IBM.” Because IBM had such a strong brand and reputation, it was considered a no-brainer to purchase their offerings -- if you were the purchasing manager, an IBM product would always make you look good to your colleagues and managers. Whether or not that was actually true, the belief existed that IBM was the best. Therefore, IBM enjoyed great sales and strong customer loyalty.

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Topics: customer relationships, General B2B Marketing, B2B marketing, value, reputation

How to Stop the Price Discounting Spiral

Posted on Sep 23, 2014 5:00:00 AM by Darrin Fleming

One of the oldest tugs of war between salespeople and customers is price objections. A moderate level of back-and-forth on price is to be expected. But in some companies, a rampant culture of price discounting takes hold and starts to create other, bigger challenges.

Let’s first look at some examples of common circumstances that often lead to price discounting.

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Topics: ROI, General B2B Marketing, price objections, price discounting, ROI Tool, Overcoming Objections, value

Don’t Make this Mistake When Value Pricing

Posted on Sep 16, 2014 5:00:00 AM by Darrin Fleming

“Can I use a value calculator to set my price for my customer?”

I hear this question a little bit less frequently than I used to. But at times people still come to me and say, “I want a value calculator so I can figure out how much to charge the customer.” I then ask, “Why?” and they say, “Well, because we are implementing a value pricing strategy and we want to know how much value the customer receives so that we can charge as close to that value as we can.” Because I know this isn’t going to end well for them, and despite the fact that I am in the business of selling value calculators and ROI tools, we never do these deals.

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Topics: ROI, General B2B Marketing, ROI Tool, price setting, value pricing, value calculators

When Demos Sabotage the Sale

Posted on Sep 9, 2014 5:00:00 AM by Darrin Fleming

Demos are a fundamental part of the sales process. Not only are they a great way to engage prospects, they frequently open the door to a deeper conversation about how you can collaborate to solve the prospect's most pressing business challenges.

That said, the demo can definitely sabotage sales -- particularly for anyone selling complex offerings with long sales cycles. Specifically, the number one mistake I see is showing the demo too early in the buying cycle. Sometimes it’s the sales professional who pushes too soon for a demo. Other times, the prospect asks to see the demo, and the salesperson takes the request as a good sign and leaps at the request. Based on my experience, however, you always want to pace yourself when it comes to the demo. Here are two reasons why.

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Topics: ROI, sales demo, customers, ROI selling, buying cycle, prospects, Overcoming Objections, B2B sales, business case, sales process

Is the ROI of Your Offering “Too Good to Be True?”

Posted on Sep 3, 2014 5:00:00 AM by Darrin Fleming

Do you ever downplay the value of your offering because you’re afraid prospects or customers won’t find the estimated ROI believable?

I’ve had many discussions with B2B salespeople who say they tone down value as soon as ROI calculations start to become “too high.” For example, let’s say a salesperson’s solution costs $1,000, and their ROI calculations show that the prospect will receive $100,000 worth of value. Feeling that the resulting 9,900% ROI is unbelievable, the salesperson will say, “We don’t really deliver $100,000 of value. We actually deliver $10,000 of value.” The salesperson believes that a 900% ROI sounds more believable to the prospect.

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Topics: ROI, customer, General B2B Marketing, ROI selling, discounting, CFO, B2B salespeople, prospect, salespeople, price, value

3 Steps to Take Control of the Sale

Posted on Aug 26, 2014 4:54:00 AM by lisagsch@gmail.com

By Doyle Slayton

Do you ever feel like you're losing control of the conversation during a prospecting call or sales appointment? You quickly realize you better regain control of the sale, or you're going to lose the deal.

Some prospects engage you with a multitude of questions around product features. Can your software do this... can it do that? At first, you think, "Wow" this customer is really interested! Thirty minutes later you realize... wait a minute... we're nowhere close to getting this deal.

Here is a technique you can master to regain control of the conversation. I call it the Statement, Benefit, Probe technique.

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Topics: customer, Quantifying a Value Proposition, sales, Value Proposition, prospecting, sales and marketing strategy, sales pipeline, Doyle Slayton

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