Accelerate Podcast with Andy Paul
March 7, 2017

Cut “No-Decisions” in Half with Great Software Demonstrations. With Peter Cohan. #399

Peter Cohan is Founder of The Second Derivative, author of Great Demo! How To Create And Execute Stunning Software Demonstrations, and expert in giving online software presentations and software demonstrations.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

[3:22] Peter wanted to structure demos to be compelling, convincing, and intriguing. He invented a methodology to do that.

[5:38] The online demo is a critical milestone on the buying journey. It’s the moment when things start to go wrong. Peter shares a story how this can happen.

[8:51] Some use demos as discovery to find out things they should have learned already. Peter says it’s best to do discovery fully before a technical proof demo. The next-best case is a 3-minute vision generation demo before discovery.

[11:03] The overview is one demonstration Peter recommends never to do. These go by various names: ‘show up and throw up,’ ‘spray and pray,’ and ‘the harbor tour.’ Your prospect will jump ship!

[13:00] Focus on what (customer’s pain), and how (specific capabilities relevant to solving the pain). Specific capabilities include only what fixes the pain point. Next, comes the value of change, and critical dates. It’s all about customer situations.

[15:52] Andy views the demo as a story, beginning to end. Peter suggests using customer success stories to introduce a vision generation demo. Journalism’s inverted pyramid is a good demo model: Headline, graphic, summary, explanation.

[21:50] Don’t use a standard non personalized demo. Summarize often, and ask: “Is my understanding correct?” “Is there any new information?” “Is this the kind of thing you had in mind?” “Would you like to see what it takes in software?”

[23:45] When you summarize frequently, you give the audience cues to comment, ask questions, and participate. You reinforce your message, and allow the audience to reflect back what they hear. Ask them to give feedback as they listen.

[30:44] To demonstrate a complex matter like a CRM, break it into chunks, introducing each one, developing it, and summarizing it, with questions. You might have a separate 10-minute demo for each function.

[31:58] Before going to a demo, understand the situation slide fully, and be able to discuss it in depth. Role play a discussion beforehand. Know what you will say, and what you will not say. Prepare. You can cut no-decisions by half, with good info.

[34:44] You want a relationship. After vision generation, follow up with a call: “Are you comfortable with setting a time for a real discovery call?” After the discovery, call to ask: “Are you ready for a demo?” Then ask: “What else is needed?”

 

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More about Peter Cohan

What’s your most powerful sales attribute?
Discovery, without question. Sales opportunities are won and lost in discovery.

Who is your sales role model?
Carol Frishman. She knows all the answers, but asks all the questions anyway.

Carol Frishman. She knows all the answers, but asks all the questions anyway.
Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School, by John Medina, and Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die, by Chip Heath and Dan Heath.

What music is on your playlist right now?
Symphonie Fantastique, by Hector Berlioz, or Grateful Dead, Europe ‘72 album.

Contact Peter Cohan

Contact Peter:

Website: SecondDerivative.com

Sponsors

Engagio’s Account Based Marketing and Sales platform enables teams to measure account engagement and orchestrate human connections at scale.

 

 

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KiteDesk helps sales teams build predictable pipeline through smart software– A single screen with all the leads, email,    and phone workflows for success.

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About Andy

Andy is the host of the top-rated 6-day per week podcast, Accelerate!, the go-to resource for the best sales advice online. He is the author of Amp Up Your Sales: Powerful Strategies That Move Customers To Make Fast, Favorable Decisions. Amp Up Your Sales is on HubSpot's list of the 20 Top Rated Sales Books of All Time. He is also the author of Zero-Time Selling: 10 Essential Steps to Accelerate Every Company’s Sales (which won Top Sales World's award as one of the Top 3 Sales & Marketing books of 2011.)

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