by Hart Davidow
The other day I was talking with one of our clients about speaking in plain English when talking about their product to their prospects, whether over the telephone or in person, when pitching their company or a product. Having spoken with so many Owners, Presidents, Materials Purchasing Agents and Buyers of products, they say the same thing to me all the time about the sales agents they come across. They all tend to speak a foreign language when it comes to their particular products. They speak “tech” using terms that are unfamiliar to most of us. Their pitch is replete with specs, acronyms, data, techy terms and all manner of incomprehensible stuff, rather than plain English. They would be much more effective sales people if, in simple accessible language, they simply explained the benefits their prospect companies would garner by helping the prospects do the things that they are looking for and save them money in the short and long run?
Prospective clients just want the long and the short of it. True facts. If the salesperson wants to speak geek, they can speak with an engineer or MIS Director who also understands and speaks that language. The business owner or senior executive has neither the time nor interest to be bombarded with information that he/she doesn't really understand. It is akin to watching a foreign film in a language you don't know and it has neither been dubbed nor subtitled.
Allow me to share a short story with you. Recently, my business partner and I had a request for a conference call with the newly hired General Manager of a software company. Our understanding was that they company was seeking our help with their sales department to more effectively sell their products to potential customers in both the Canadian and the USA marketplaces. The General Manager had contacted me through LinkedIn and we had a very short conversation. He sent his contact information to me, with his LinkedIn page, website address and had asked for an appointment the next day with us to discuss how we could help their company.
As with any new contact, we decide to prescreen prior to jumping on a conference call. We diligently researched the company. We read all their LinkedIn information and their website. Several things immediately that stood out. The company was a tech company and their website read exactly that way, in GEEK SPEAK…. No offense, but neither of us are proficient in computer speak. At least I admit I am not, and the website was not even close to something readable for me.
So we concluded that they had terrible videos which had been sent to us, had a bad website, and just okay information on LinkedIn which led us nowhere in particular.
Then came the telephone call.
We spoke with the NEWLY HIRED ENTHUSIASTIC General Manager. We were able to ask a few questions at first, and, before we could got to the most important questions and discuss why we were asked to connect, he launched into a 36 minute overview in computereze about what his software does and how it works (none of which we really understood), how it is built, the glitches it will not have, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. You get the idea.
My eyes glazed over and I thanked goodness I was on the telephone rather than a Skype call and he could not see my less than enthusiastic facial expression.
Now, why did I tell you all of this? Well, first off, it’s a story you should hear, read and recognize, because it’s you at one time or another, as a salesperson, in front of your prospect. Or, it’s me the business owner on the opposite side of the table, wanting to rip off my ears and throw something at the presenter. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a phone call or Skype or whatever. You, the presenter, are wasting valuable time with not needed technical information and speaking foreign language not understood or cared about and doesn’t make us any money at that moment.
This story is greatly important for salespeople in a competitive environment today that will eat you alive. In a world of building relationships to sell your products or services, keep it simple. Are you looking to excite your prospect or bore them to death. Focus on their needs and wants and simply and concisely show them your solution.
If that is what you want out of your career, then you should pick up the telephone, or email us at JustRightInternational.com and let us help you grow your business 6X in the next year.