No matter how good your sales pitch may be, there comes a time when you will inevitably need to provide a demo before you can close the deal. Sadly, most sales professionals focus too many resources on just making their pitch, and not enough on that all-important demo. Many sales reps just don’t know how to do a demo.

In this episode of INSIDE Inside Sales, Darryl is joined by popular podcast host and digital marketing specialist Sam Dunning. Darryl and Sam share some valuable tips and advice on how you can dramatically increase the quality of your demos. They discuss ways to set an agenda, expand your discovery process, and weave stories into your demo while simultaneously getting buy-in from your prospects at every stage. Get some master class tutelage on how to create next level demos on this episode of INSIDE Inside Sales!






Host: Darryl PraillVanillaSoft

Guest: Sam Dunning, Web Choice


How To Do A Demo

Darryl Praill: So what was your first job in the industry? Not your first job ever. ‘Cause mine was picking tomatoes or picking corn or one of those two. It was a field labor job. My parents threw me out of the house. In fact, that was corn detasseling, I probably started when I was 11 or 12 years old. Big thing where I came from. Do you know what corn detasseling is? You’re probably saying, “What the hell are you saying?” Corn de-tasseling. Corn has a tassel. Put it another way, male, men corn stalks have tassels. I’ll let you assume what that tassel is for.

Darryl Praill: And you would be right. And the job, the purpose of detasseling is you literally walk down the field, you’re wearing a garbage bag, you start at six or seven in the morning, corn stalks are six feet tall, all the leaves are full of dew, they’re sharp, so you wear the garbage bags, you don’t get totally soaked, and it kinda deflects some of the papercut-like accidents that are prone to happen in that job, and you walk along this one, two, three, 10 acre row of corn and you pull out the stalks. That was my first job.

Darryl Praill: I don’t know why I brought that up, I just got out on a tangent. Yeah, I do this sometimes. I’m shiny objects squirrel boy. So just so you know. I know, ya know, I’m sorry. But my first job in sales beyond being the door-to-door photocopier salesperson, that I’ve said 1000 times and you can probably say it for me. Shut up, Praill, we know what you did. What I consider my first real serious like B to B type sales job, was I was a sales engineer. Now many of you are probably going, “What’s a sales engineer?” And what you’re doing is showing your age.

Darryl Praill: So let me explain to you what a sales engineer is. There was a time not too long ago, Billy and Sally, when software, for example was not sold by subscription. When it was sold on premise. And people would have to have a computer dedicated on their facilities. They would have to buy a powerful computer. And we would give them floppy diskettes or CDs or DVDs, and they would install it and it would run right there within their own four walls. And because of that you had technical due diligence like you wouldn’t believe and it was a process. And because it wasn’t a SAS based model, everybody wanted to customize it just a little bit differently.

Darryl Praill: And that my friends, was the role of the sales engineer. The sales rep, the account executive, would go have their luncheons, the face-to-face, they would drink the beer, they would laugh, they would guffaw, and they would say, “What do you need to do?” “Well I need to know that it can interface “with my AS/400 and can print out work orders in a multi-part carbon-based form. And my guys on the shop floor need to be able to use it as well as the girls in the office.” Now, yes, I’m using sexist terms but that was the era.

Darryl Praill: And so the sales engineer would go and take the software and go on the box, the custom box, and they would go and configure it all. And they would hook it up to the AS/400 and they would show it working. And they would make it dumb down stupid ass simple for the guys on the floor. And they would also make sure that the screens look exactly the way the ladies in the office wanted it to look like. ‘Cause the ladies in the office looked at it one way, they had their forms.

Darryl Praill: And the guys on the floor look at it another way. Now I had to show it all worked together, and that’s what I did. Sales engineer went in and custom crafted a very personalized solution and showed it worked. The sales engineer also was the one who did all the song and dance and the demonstrations. So, again the account executive would say, “Yeah, Billy, we can do that,” backslap, “Daryl, show ’em how we do that.” See the account executive in those days, they did jack shit. All they did was backslap. They had an expense account. It really was “Mad Men” and I’m not making this up. And the sales engineer would be like, “Sure, let me give you a demo.” And I would do a rudimentary version of PowerPoint or some kind of binder-based slide show. And then I would go into the product and point and click. Or in those days often it was green screen. And I would do the demo.

Darryl Praill: Now here’s the thing, how old was I at the time? I might have been 23, 24 at the time. And I got this 40, 45-year-old guy backslapping the prospect, and looking to the 24-year-old to do a kick-ass demo. That guy, whose gonna bring home the fat-ass commission check, put all of his eggs in my basket. And nine times out of 10 gave me zero coaching. Didn’t tell me what the prospect talked about with him over drinks. Didn’t give me any guidance whatsoever.

Darryl Praill: My job was to give a killer demo. A killer demo that would get us to the next step where I could mock it up and show him how it worked. And that’s where the process went. At the end of the day the commission went to the sales guy. I got bupkis. I had a salary and that’s all I got. I put in the overtime, they didn’t. I did demos, I was the guy. That’s a sales engineer. Today’s very different, right?

Darryl Praill: Today you are the sales engineer. Today you’re the one doing the qualification and the discovery. Today you’re the one doing the negotiation, you’re setting the landmines. You’re not going drinking. You’re not backslapping. It’s changed dramatically, it’s changed for the better. But you know the one area that hasn’t changed? The one area that I see screwed up over and over and over again, and I’m speaking as a buyer now, not as that young sales engineer. That the people doing the demos don’t have a clue what they’re doing. They’re not following their own advice. They’re not listening to the prospect, they’re not setting the traps. They’re doing the demo wrong.

Darryl Praill: Now on this show we talk all the time about how to do better discovery, how to have a better playbook, how to handle those objections, how to set value, how to be authentic, how to do messaging, how to do social selling, how to write an email that gets opened up. We talk about all those topics. But you know what we’ve never talked about? We have never talked about how to do a demo. So, I’m done yelling at you. I’m off my soapbox. I apologize about that, I got a little carried away.

Welcome Sam Dunning

Darryl Praill: How do we solve this problem? Well, the answer my friends is so damn simple, you just reach out to Sam Dunning. Who’s Sam? If you don’t know Sam, of course you know Sam. Sam was in the recent UK, USA debates. Therefore, you know already he’s a top dog, he’s a main guy, he’s a big player. He comes from team UK, that explains the accent. I have a Canadian one, he’s got a British one. Ah, well, we can both say zed today if we want to, but he will say, aluminium and I’ll say, aluminum. So, it’s just a confusing world. He is the co-founder and sales director from Web Choice. What’s Web Choice? Well I love this. Web Choice is all about helping businesses skyrocket their lead, sales and brand positioning. They do SEO, they deal with digital marketing. They’re all about the conversion. And what gets more conversions than a demo? Sam, welcome to the show.

Sam Dunning: Hey Daryl, thanks for having me on man. Absolute pleasure and excited to get stuck in and start talking about demos and the process to follow. And hopefully share some gold nuggets for everyone tuning in. On just ways they can sharpen the process, really.

Darryl Praill: I love it, I love it, love it, love it. Now while we’re doin’ this, okay if you’re at your desk, go follow him on Linkedin and all the usual places. ‘Cause he’s a really really cool cat. If you wanted to check out more about him go watch the debate, he was killer. But today we’re talking about demos, Sam. So I know when we were talking about you on the show and what we can do and you were the one who actually approached me about the demo. And my reaction was like, “Whoa, whoa, whoa, that idea! “That’s what we gotta do!”. I gotta ask, why did you bring that idea up?

Sam Dunning: Well, I gave you a few ideas. I wanted to firstly I pinged you a few ideas across. I wanted to do something fresh so I said demos. I think I gave some ideas on inbound leads, LinkedIn. You said, “Look, that’s been done a bit, let’s go for the demo approach.” Which is cool by me. So, I thought I’d just yeah, tap into a few tips that maybe people have not thought over or tap into the process that I like to follow with demos. And another quick angle before we get down a rabbit hole, I know a lot of guys, especially in the digital space, I was guilty of this for some heftier, bigger projects they’re trying to land, doesn’t matter if you sell CRM software, digital software, whatever it may be in inside sales, a lot of us are guilty of sending a quote document or proposed document hoping for the best.

Sam Dunning: Whereas presentations and demos are so good because you’re having a one-to-one conversation with your prospect. So, I wanna encourage you to start doing demos for projects. That all comes down to proper qualification and proper discovery calls. So perhaps when you’re ready, Daryl, we can kind of jump into how to do the process and the actual steps you should take in order to do successful demos and presentations.

5 Step Process for Demos

Darryl Praill: So Sam’s got a five-step process. We’re gonna work through it and you know how this goes guys, right? We spend the first, ya know majority, so in the first, second or third step at a time, then we hurry the next two or three points. We’ll probably do that again today, I’ll apologize in advance. One more thing, before we start, if you’re listening to me on a podcast app, okay, Spotify, Pocket Casts, whatever it might be, multitask.

Darryl Praill: You need to go and do a search on your podcast subscriptions, it’s called Sam’s Business Growth Show, okay? Look it up, it’s a killer show. I’ve been on it, Jeb Blunt’s be on it, Daniel Disney’s been on it. In other words, with the exception of me, these are really good people. Go listen to the show, that’s Sam’s show. You’re gonna love it. If you like this show, you will like that show.

Make Sure Everyone Is On The Same Page – Set an Agenda

Darryl Praill: Okay, you got a five-step process. You’re gonna walk us through it. You’re gonna tell us why we should do it. You’re gonna tell us what we’re doing wrong. What is step number one to making sure we have a killer demo?

Sam Dunning: Awesome, so we’re going pre-presentation, pre-demo first. So, we’re talking about discovery call. So, discovery call pretty much makes your demo or your presentation. Because if you haven’t nailed down you’re prospect’s paying points, they’re goals and objectives, so they’re desired outcomes where they want to get to.

Sam Dunning: So, if with their product they want to get to X amount of turnover per month or X amount of revenue per year, you need to know that. You need to know exactly who the decision makers are. So, if you’re speaking to the sales manager or the sales director, then you need to know who else is gonna be involved in this process.

Sam Dunning: So, let’s pretend you’ve already established this. You’ve had a great discovery call. You’ve nailed down their pains, their timeframes, when they wanna do this, when they wanna start implementation, you know their budget, that’s all been agreed. So you’re gonna email across the agenda to all the DMs that are involved in the meeting.

Sam Dunning: So, what I’ve found is pretty good is just to say, “Look, here’s a recap of the agenda we agreed on “in our discovery call. “We’re gonna go through your goals and objectives, “we’re gonna go for our recommended solution, “we’re gonna talk about the timeframes of implementations “and then we’re gonna talk about next steps “all in this demo.”. And make sure they accept that invite. So that’s the first step, Daryl, that I’d set down. Make sure everyone’s on the same page, make sure you’ve got agreed agenda pre-demo before you get stuck into it.

Darryl Praill: All right so let me explain, there’s a lot of nuances in what he said. You’re listening to that, I know what you’re doing here guys ’cause I’m guilty of it too and you’re going, “Yeah, well of course your gonna to do that. “Of course, I’m gonna to do that.” Okay, let me back up the horse. For those of you who still have a horse. The vast majority of you never send an agenda, I’m speaking as a buyer. I cannot remember the last time I ever got an agenda.

Darryl Praill: So, if you send an agenda, I’m gonna love you like you can’t imagine. You’re already gonna be vastly different than anybody else. The agenda needs to be three, four, five bullets, that’s it, short, sweet, simple. But it sets my expectations, if you wanna put time around the two. The first five minutes is this, the next 10 minutes is that. Bing, bing, boom. I’ll love you. ‘Cause what that says to me is you’re optimizing my time. What it also does, is you are managing me now. You’re saying this is what I need to accomplish during our meeting, so are you prepared?

Darryl Praill: This is the time allowances I wanna cover. So then when you actually get to the call, and I don’t want to jump ahead, I’m not sure what he’s going to say, but you could say, “I’m just recapping, “you’re time’s still good, this agenda’s still good?” Like you’re gonna confirm it. I’m gonna say, “Yes”. You’re getting me to say, “Yes, yes, yes”. You’re sucking me into the process. But if I don’t like the agenda before the call ever happens I can say, “I hear want you want to do “but I don’t have time for this.” Or you missed something.

Darryl Praill: And my goodness, do you want to know if you missed something? Because if it’s important to me, it damn well better be important to you. So that agenda alone is over the top brilliant. And it’s so, so, so, stupid-ass easy and too many of you aren’t doing. So that’s the first thing. The other thing I loved about it was he said was the discovery was all done. Discovery’s all done. Okay, let’s back the horse up again.

Darryl Praill: How many of you have got an inquiry or you got a nibble, and the first thing you do is you say, “Okay great, let’s do a demo. Let’s just do a demo.” In other words, you just jump in and you start throwing crap against the wall. I have feature A, feature B, feature C isn’t this cool? Bing, bang, boom. I don’t care about seeing every stupid-ass feature you have in your offering. I got pains and if you can fix my pains, I care about seeing that.

Darryl Praill: So the discovery process done properly does two things. It sets my expectations of what I’m gonna see. I’m gonna see that you have a solution to my pain and it also tells you what I wanna see. So you don’t waste cycles and time, then you can focus on other things. All of that is in step one. And he isn’t showing a thing.

Darryl Praill: With that, Sam, we’re at the 14-minute mark give or take. And this is when we go to a commercial normally. Some of you know I don’t do that often because I get a little talkative, as do the guests occasionally. And I think in this one I’ve done more talking than Sam. So I’m gonna shut up now and we’re gonna go to commercial break. We’ll be right back.

Make Sure Decision Makers are Present

Darryl Praill: Okay, Sam, we’re back. I’ve done all that, I’ve done the agenda, finalized it, we did the discovery, we know all that fantastic stuff. It’s D Day, it’s Demo Day. Here I am with step number two live.

Sam Dunning: Let’s do it, So just one thing to add, on that agenda that you email, one thing I like to do is just put a little P.S. So if you said, “John, here’s the agenda “point one, two, three, four. P.S. if you think I’ve forgotten anything or if anyone needs to be added to this meeting or you want anything to be included in my demo that we’ve not yet covered, ping me a message before John, I don’t want to miss it. Let me know.”

Sam Dunning: Just in case, because the amount of times that people have come back and said, “Yeah I forgot to mention this in our discovery call, can you add this in?” So, you don’t get presenting your solution or your demo and halfway through their like you missed this and then you can’t close the deal because you missed something big out. Okay, so we’ve nailed down the agenda, we’ve got to stage two.

Sam Dunning: So you’ve actually got your demo there, you’re Inside Sales so you’re probably doing a video call, Zoom, Skype, whatever. Start the call. Actually, first things first, you wanna build some rapport. One thing that I sometimes do is if I’ve not actually spoken to the person on the video call I might say, “Look,” just a simple one, “whereabouts in the world are you today?” just to build up a bit of a rapport. Talk about where they’re from, name some common ground. Doesn’t have to be too much, doesn’t have to be go on too long. Keep it short and snappy.

Sam Dunning: Once you’ve done that, confirm that everyone you agreed that was gonna be on the call is gonna be on the call. So if you had your discovery call with the sales manager and you agreed that the other people involved in the decision are the sales director and the CEO of the company, let’s say for example. You say, “John, I remember in our last call we agreed that your Director of Sales and your CEO, Fred and Bill, are gonna be joining us today. Fred and Bill, you there?” If John says, “Look, Fred couldn’t actually make it, Sam.” You say, “Wait, John, we agreed that these guys needed to be on this call to make this decision today. If they’re not gonna be on this call, can they come in? I can wait five minutes.”

Sam Dunning: And if he says, “Look, they’re out of the office.” You say, “Right, now, well, I’m gonna have to reschedule this meeting.” Don’t try and pitch to people who can’t make decisions. It’s a waste of your time and it’s waste of their time. So that’s the first thing. If everyone is on the call, carry on. You don’t need to reschedule it. Go through a recap of the agenda. So look, agree on the timeframe you’re gonna spend. So you say, “Look guys we’re gonna spend 30 minutes today going through everything is that still okay?” “Yes. Carry on. We agree that we’re gonna go through your goals, your recommended solution, timeframes, budget for implementation.”

Sam Dunning: And then we’re gonna spend some time, “if it makes sense, talking about next steps. “But, if at any stage you feel that this is not a project “that you guys want to look at, absolutely fine. “Let me know, are you okay telling me ‘No’?” Make sure they say, “Yes”. “However if you’re happy with this solution, “are you okay telling me ‘Yes’?” Carry on. Okay, so that is step two. Essentially going through everything and making sure everyone’s on the same page and the DMs are all there.

Darryl Praill: So I wanna a focus on one little thing. You made a reference to this, I’m gonna just kinda repeat it in different words. One of the things I really value when we’re at this stage, but really something you can do at every step of the way, is that you heard Sam say kinda repeat the understanding of the purpose of the meeting recap, repeat the knowledge you’ve previously gleaned, right? So in this case the demo might have been in this case so I heard you say, “We’ve got, you know 30 minutes, we cover these four things with these people, and you told me previously in our discovery process that ya know, issues A,B,C,D were really important to you. Is that correct?”

Darryl Praill: When you repeat back to me what we’ve already talked about, I love you, I give you a kiss. I will shake your hand and high-five you and there are so many reasons why. One, I know you’re paying attention. Two, I don’t feel like a transaction ’cause I’m different than everybody else. Three, I feel like you’re actually focused on me and my issue. Four, I don’t have to worry that multiple times through this meeting I’m gonna have to say to you, and this happens to me a lot kids, “We talked about this already, we talked about that in the last call, why you asking me this again?” So just repeating the understanding builds good will, builds trust, builds relationship, makes you look like a pro. That’s massive. It’s all about optics.

Darryl Praill:All right, step three. We haven’t even started the demo yet. We’re just getting ready to do the demo.

Tailor Demo to be Relevant to the Pain Points

Sam Dunning: Let’s do it. We’re going into the demo. This is the part where you can finally spill the features and benefits of your wonderful product. If you offer CRM, if you’re offer fishmark, whatever your Inside Sales product is, you can start explaining the wonderful features. But, make sure it’s tailored. Make sure your presentation or your demo is only showcasing the features that are relevant to the pain points or the goals that your customer wants to get to that you’ve established during discovery.

Sam Dunning: So, start going through these. So start sort of tailoring, talking about the features why they’re relevant, how they’re gonna solve the issues. Another great thing to do is kinda talk about bringing up issues before they get to you. Before they get risen. So for example, if you offer CRM software and you know that quite a common concern is that it won’t link into email, so let’s say into Gmail, you can say, “You may be thinking that you might have to manually input all this data “from the leads that you get inbound into the CRM. “Well, this actual tool little snippet fits straight into your Gmail, your Outlook, so in one click “you can export the information.”

Sam Dunning: So kind of cover common objections. What I like to do is list three or four common objections that you get whilst you’re presenting. Make sure you have note of those and address those objections before they’re risen. Once you’ve gone through some major features another great thing to do is say, “Ask questions.” So I learnt this from Sandler Training actually. Once you’ve gone through a big feature say, “Okay we’ve covered quite a lot here, “usually there’s a few questions now. “What are yours?” ‘Cause people don’t like to be confronted though. If you say, “What questions have you got here?”

Sam Dunning: Rather you say, “Ask questions.” It’s a nice way of saying, basically, let me know what’s concerning you, let me know what’s on your mind. And they might say, “I didn’t quite understand feature A “or I didn’t quite understand feature B.” Once you’ve gone through a big block of features then say, “Are you comfortable, John, with how we’re gonna attack this issue with this product?” If they say “Yes”, you say, “John, are you 100% comfortable with how we’re gonna attack this issue with this product?” If they say “Yes”, you carry onto the next section of your demo. If they say “No” you say, “Well, what part of this aren’t you comfortable with?”

Sam Dunning: And then just shut up. They should explain to you the exact issue that you didn’t cover with a feature then you can show them exactly what they need to see. Get that established and then you can carry on with the rest of the demo. And then that’s pretty much the next step up until step four.

Darryl Praill: Okay, so let’s tear this apart because there’s so much about this that I love. I’m gonna start from the end and work back to the beginning. When you were doing the old, “Are you comfortable with this?” I’ve historically used the expression, I’d be curious if you think it’s a good idea or bad idea, I’ll say, “Does that make sense?” Now ’cause you run the risk that it maybe doesn’t make sense, they know they don’t want to look like a moron. I recognize that. But, yeah, it’s just like you know, “Does that make sense?” “Well, I’m not clear on that.” “Great, what is it you’re not clear on? Maybe I didn’t do it right. Let me show you again. Where you getting hung up on?”

Darryl Praill: What Sam is really doing at every step of the way there, it’s really subtle, he’s getting buy in. Not only is he getting buy in, he’s doing ya know, a deep dive on discovery. He’s already done the discovery which was precursor to this demo. But now he’s doing more discovery. Now there’s probably more people in the room ’cause you’re at the demo stage. So you’re uncovering a couple things. Not only are you uncovering more information that you may need to respond to, but there’re also more objections, there’s also more opportunities that your solution can really handle that situation well.

Darryl Praill: You’re also uncovering people’s biases or people’s inclinations. So, if all of a sudden there’s a techy guy in the room that was never in the room before and they’re like, “Well, it’s not secure!” You never even talked about security but here’s security. Okay, well that’s great. You need to know that. ‘Cause you need to be better than the competition. So, and if they say, “No, no, it’s great. Yup, it’s great, it’s great, uh huh.” Buy-in. “Do you think this will solve the problem?” “Yes I do.” They are talkin’ themselves into the deal. Okay, let’s go back to the beginning. The beginning of that step where he talked about you’re gonna tailor it he said now.

Darryl Praill: For my American friends, that’s the same as saying customize it, all right? You’re gonna customize it based on the discovery. So, the biggest mistake I see is everybody I said this already, they just demo everything with no rhyme or reason. You’ve got a script. You start here, I started with that, I log in, I start at the dashboard, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding and this is what I do. And I show every feature and Bob’s your uncle.

Darryl Praill: When instead best practices say, “Okay, I’m gonna show you how we solve those five points. “And then if you’re still interested and we still have time, “I’ll show you more features in the product if you’re so inclined. But today, just today, just today in this first demo, I just wanna hit those talking points.” Me as a buyer, I give you a second kiss because you’re respecting my calendar again. And that’s really all I wanna see right now.

Darryl Praill: So, if I can see that, you go check, check, check, check, check, then hey, let’s have a follow-on demo with a few more people on my team, where you can go drill down and go deep. But now the beauty for you is I’ve passed you off to my team so you are anointed by me. I really wanted to call that out, I love that. Okay, movin’ on. Of course, we’re getting tight on time. I told you we would.

Darryl Praill: Two more steps to go. What’s step four, I think this is my favorite step here but you can probably tell ’cause I talk a lot. What’s step four, Sam?

Weave Stories Into Demo

Sam Dunning: Yes sir, so just before we go back, you covered a good ground. It’s basically getting buy in at each stage, keeping your solution, your demo, your presentation short and snappy and to the point. ‘Cause people, like you say, are getting a lower and lower attention span. So make sure the features you’re showing are only relevant to the pains they discussed. Otherwise it’s a snore fest, it’s a snooze fest, right.

Sam Dunning: Next point is weave stories into your demo, your presentation, which is something I’m working on more and more and something you could all do. There’s plenty of books, plenty of podcasts where you can learn about this stuff. Anyway, in my world a common objection in the digital marketing space is, “Sam, it all looks good, but we’ve been burnt before man. Our last digital marketing supplier really took us for a ride. They’re an absolute cowboy, they’re billing us thousands per month and we got no real tangible results.”

Sam Dunning: So I say, “Look John, I understand there’s a lot of cowboys out there. Can I tell you a story?”. The chances are they’ll say “Yes” ’cause everyone wants to hear a story. My story in this sense, you can weave this into your own senses, look, I used to always buy Ford cars. I used to buy them for years and years. Now a couple years ago I got a Ford car, second hand. I was still quite new in sales so I wasn’t earning that much.

Sam Dunning: But anyway, I picked out this nice shiny, silver, new Ford car, few thousand pounds, took it out for a spin. The first couple months it was great. But a few months in, started getting issues with the engine. So, took it to garage, cost me a few hundred, they fixed it. I was happy. Another month later, it started squeaking again. Took it to the garage and it was another couple hundred. So I was like, “This is getting a bit annoying “but we’ll carry on.”

Sam Dunning: The third time I thought that was it, I went to my mechanic, I said, “Look man, I’ve had terrible issues with this car. I can’t take it back ’cause it’s pre-owned, what do you suggest?” He said, “Look, my wife’s had this great car, Hyundai. “And also we had this old lady that came into the garage recently, she actually broke down just outside the garage. It’s got a four year warranty man.” And they came within half an hour she called them. They fixed it up straight away. He said, “It’s a little run around car.” I said, “That sounds just the ticket man.” Went to the garage.

Sam Dunning: So I had the social proof ’cause he recommended two people. Went straight to the garage. Sales guy gave me a demo and I bought it straight away. The point of this story is that even though I kept getting issues with my previous car, I still need to get a car ’cause I need to get from A to B all the time, the point is, do your due diligence. So, in this case I had social proof. I did my due diligence to the garage. So do your due diligence on a company and make sure you’re making a sensible decision. So, weave stories into ways that you can get your buyer engaged, get them kinda on the same level as you and make a point. So, in this case, it is due diligence to make sure you’re actually working with reputable companies for your product.

Close the Deal

Darryl Praill: How many people were listening to him right there, and you were like me and you’re like just listening, you wanted to hear what was gonna happen. Was he gonna buy, was he not gonna buy and how he was gonna tie it back to this opportunity? That’s the power of story telling, it’s relationship building. Okay, we’re down to our last-minute big guy. What’s the last step?

Sam Dunning: Okay, you need to close the deal, basically. So from what we’ve gone through so far, you’re getting buy in at each stage. You’re saying after each major feature, does this make sense? They’re hopefully saying “Yes” and if not you’re showing them something and then you’re asking, “Does it make sense again?” And you’re clarifying does it make sense fully 100%, you’re getting buy in. So towards the end of the demo, again a Sandler technique here which I found really, really good, you say, “Look, John, on a scale of nought to 10, nought being not interested, 10 being you’re ready “to go ahead with our software solution, “where would you say you are right now?” So if they say a “10”, you just say, “John, what would you like to do now?”

Sam Dunning: The deals done. They’re gonna say, “Yeah, let’s go ahead “send over the paperwork.” Or you can say, “Would you like me to send the paperwork?” They’re gonna say “Yes” ’cause they said 10. If they say anything less than a 10, so if six, seven, you say, “Okay John, “tell me what you’d like to see to bring this up to a 10.” They might say, “Look, I didn’t quite understand “how you’re gonna implement the timeframe, “I don’t quite understand how our team’s gonna get involved, “I had an issue with this.” Go back, show them exactly how you’re gonna address their issues.

Sam Dunning: Once you’ve done that fully and clearly ask them again. And keep repeating that until they get to a 10 and you’re ready to move forward. Alternatively, let’s say in your presentation there’s a different type of close, you put together two or three solutions. So, I always recommend doing one solution that’s bang on the budget you agreed in discovery, then maybe two or three with slightly extra features just to give them a bit of flexibility if they want to bump up and upsell them a bit. So towards the end of your presentation you just say, “Does it make sense to go with option one “or would option two or three be a better fit?” If they say, “Option two makes sense”, great the deal’s done. If they say, “Oh, I’m not sure this was a bit “of a concern.” You say, “What about this didn’t make sense?”. Again, find out the exact issue, address that perfectly and then ask the question again. That’s pretty much it–

Darryl Praill: Five steps. Five steps by the man himself, Sam Dunning, co-founder, Sales Director. He, my friends is a rock star. His company is called Web Choice, check them out. A digital rock star at that. He understands selling ’cause he’s a sales director, but he also understands the power of digital and all the tools and tasks it takes to actually get that lead and work it through the whole process.

Darryl Praill: He’s the man. He’s also, as I mentioned to you already, the founder and host of Sam’s Business Growth Show. If you liked today’s conversation, if you liked his storytelling, you liked his processes, then you’re gonna love the show. Sam, loved having you here. Everybody! Guess what? I called it, I was right, we’re out of time. But we’re gonna do it again, one week from now. Take care. I’ll talk to you soon, bye bye.