Every presales demo should connect with the audience on a personal level. This means understanding potential customers’ motivations, prioritizing the most important topics first, and interacting using language that appeals to them. In other words, you need to resonate with your audience.
In his DEMOFEST 2023 session, Chad Wilson, Vice President of Operations 2Win! Global, says, “Resonance is when one substance moves with another with the same natural frequency. We use this word resonance when we’re interacting with another person and we’re clicking. What we want to do is build resonance with our audience to help them achieve the things they’re trying to do.”
3 Methods to Create Resonance
The next time you’re preparing for a sales demo, think about how you can tailor your message to build resonance and increase your chances of closing the deal. According to Chad, the best way to do this is to take a buyer enablement approach by focusing on what matters to the audience.
“We need to figure out what each stakeholder cares about, what are their motivations? Not only what do they want to see, but what do they care about and why? Why would they change what they’re doing? We need to tailor our approach with precision to address those needs.”
The three things Chad recommends sales engineers focus on are:
When we understand what motivates our clients, prioritize our time with them, and interact with them on a regular basis, we build stronger relationships with them and influence their decisions. This ultimately leads to better demo outcomes.
Unfortunately, there’s a common scenario many of us have experienced as solution consultants where our sales counterpart isn’t prepared for the demo and has only a superficial understanding of what motivates the audience.
As we’re trying to persuade these potential customers that our solution is the best way to solve their problems, we need to know what aspects of our solution they’ll actually care about. If we haven’t gotten a chance to speak to the stakeholders before the meeting or a chance to qualify this customer by sending an interactive video demo, there’s still a way to know what motivates each stakeholder by identifying their persona.
2Win has a framework called the “Value Pyramid” to align benefits with the three primary roles in the audience: operational users, managers/department leaders, and executives:
- Operational users are the day-to-day users of the solution. They are motivated by how the solution will make their job easier or more efficient.
- Managers/department leaders are responsible for the performance of the department or organization. They are motivated by how the solution will improve departmental performance or achieve strategic goals. They typically don’t control the budget, but they have direct access to the person who does.
- Executives are the people who are responsible for the overall performance of the company. They are motivated by how the solution will help the company achieve its strategic goals – not features and functions.
As you’re presenting, align your benefits to audience motivations. When clients can see how the solution will improve their areas of interest, they are more likely to be persuaded to adopt a new solution.
As solution engineers, it’s easy for us to go overboard and try to cover every available feature of our solution. While your solution might have many amazing features, your audience is only going to care about the ones that directly impact their jobs.
Prioritization is key to delivering successful sales demos. Focus on what will motivate your audience – not what you want to show. Failing to do this can bore your buyers or, worse, cause you to run out of time, making you seem ill-prepared.
Just like with motivations, this does require a bit of discovery. You need to understand the specific concerns your customers are dealing with. This can be done a number of ways. Chad suggests creating a “win plan,” which is a document that helps you align your capabilities with the needs of the audience, ultimately showcasing your value with an “impact statement.”
You can also use automation to help with discovery. If your demo automation software has the ability to let customers self-select topics of interest, you’ll be able to see what topics are most important to them.
Once you know what they are looking for, you can tailor your demo to address those topics.
By prioritizing your content, you can ensure that your sales demos are focused and persuasive.
It’s not just important to think about what we’re saying but how we’re saying it. To really connect with your audience, you need to use the buyer’s language. Avoid jargon and technical terms the buyer may not be familiar with and opt for terms that are meaningful.
Interaction goes beyond just speech. During a presales demo keep your focus on the buyer and not the screen. This means making eye contact with the buyer, asking questions, using their name, and paraphrasing what was just said to show you’re listening actively
You should also be mindful of the buyer’s body language and reactions, especially when you’re presenting virtually. As humans, we communicate with more than our words, so focusing on the buyer allows you to create a more personal and engaging experience.
Melding the Methods into Your Presentations
Creating resonance with buyers can help you close deals faster. There are three simple methods you can use to build resonance: motivation, prioritization, and interaction. You should keep each stakeholders’ preferences and needs in mind when delivering a demo. By paying attention to all stakeholders and tailoring the demo to their needs, salespeople can create a more comprehensive and persuasive experience.