Boston, MA—Traditionally, salespeople have been taught that they must give the absolute, most polished and captivating presentation possible. Sales have always been focused on the presentation. But in reality the presentation is but one stage of the sales process, and it should be one of the last parts of the sales process rather than the first. Most sales associates start with the presentation, and this creates a number of key challenges.
Here are three signs that you’re presenting too early:
1. You don’t know enough about your prospects. During the sales process one of the most important elements is that early on, you begin to truly understand what’s going on in your prospects’ worlds. What are their key challenges? What are some objectives they’d like to accomplish?
By understanding these critical issues you can then craft a presentation around the key challenges and objectives of your prospects, but until you understand these issues, you absolutely should not be presenting to a prospect.
2. The prospect isn’t ready to make a decision. By presenting early you’re going to be putting pressure on a prospect to make a decision before he or she may be comfortable with you as their solution. Instead of presenting really early in that process, spend that time to learn about the prospect; this way, when you do give the presentation you’ll knock the ball out of the park.
3. You’re getting price resistance. So often prospects will say, “Your price is too high,” when in fact, this actually isn’t the obstacle that’s restraining them from making a decision. However, it’s one of the easiest areas for a prospect to focus on in order to get out of committing to a decision.
When you present too soon before you fully understand what’s going on with your prospects, you’re very likely to get price resistance simply because you’ve failed to create the associated value during that sales process.
A little understanding can go a long way towards making a sale and securing a new client. By understanding these three signs of premature presentations in selling situations, you will know how to avoid them and to make sure that your presentation comes at the end of the sales process rather than at the beginning.
Marc Wayshak is a sales strategist and the bestselling author of Game Plan Selling and Breaking All Barriers. He created the Game Plan Selling System, a revolutionary sales methodology, based upon his experiences as an All-American athlete, Ivy League graduate, startup entrepreneur and years of research, training and selling.
He is a regular online contributor to Fast Company, Reuters, Forbes, Entrepreneur, The Huffington Post, the Hoover’s Bizmology blog and the Salesforce blog. Marc holds an MBA from the University of Oxford and a BA from Harvard University.