Regardless of the product (or service) you offer, if you want to know how to use product demonstrations more effectively, it requires a few key steps. In this article, we are going to quickly review the essentials in order to help you deliver targeted and far more effective demos.
It can be oh-so-tempting to readily accept any request for a demo since it lets you get your foot in the door and your product or service in front of a lead. However, you must perform due diligence, which you should rename “due discovery”.
In other words, to properly conduct a product demo, you have to understand just what that particular lead’s “pains” or problems might be. Why? It lets you design a demo that indicates just how your product or service is of value to that individual client.
With the internet making competition fiercer than ever before, the need for customization in prospect demos is crucial. In fact, it may be one of the few moments you have to show your company’s differentiation AND indicate how your offer is an ideal solution to a client’s actual need.
Use a “discovery call or email” as your main form of due discovery. As the experts at Forbes explain, this is to “get a good understanding of the pain points, challenges and requirements of the customer.” Ask questions, require information in any emails or forms…it allows you to leverage “insight to inform the approach to the meeting…creating a compelling demo.”
Get the Right Information
Now, if you are going to perform due discovery properly, you need to know how to conduct effective “needs discovery” and assess how your product can solve individual problems. In other words, there are no general or bland questions that you can ask and expect to get detailed answers.
Instead, use a tip from one expert and “gain your prospect’s trust by showing you understand their industry”. Talk with them or emphasize any trends you know affect their specific business and highlight the threats and/or opportunities connected to them.
You can do this very easily in the form of a “story”. It is a lot easier than you might think. For example, an article from Inc. illustrates this approach by offering a “story” about a fictional phone call from a “factory floor”. The call is to let management know that supplies are so low that shut down is imminent. From here, the story should integrate the solution available in the demo, such as software that allows the location of the supplies needed, orders them and gets them onsite the next day.
Naturally, you must know the industry before you can create the “what if scenario” or story about a company’s pains or problems. Then simply insert the product or service in the demo as a viable answer.
Prep It… And Then Again
Experts all agree that demos are far trickier than they seem and that focusing on the client’s needs, ensuring the presentation is impactful and managing the technical demonstration can be overwhelming. It is why the importance of preparation and rehearsal cannot be overemphasized. Practice, refine and test the demonstration repeatedly, consider any “what if” scenarios, consider questions your clients might have and always have at least one contingency plan.
And never forget that the entire point of a demo is to close a deal or at least take matters one step closer to a sale. As one expert said, “Because ‘seeing is believing,’ there is no better time than after a successful demo to close a sale or ask for the next step, such as a meeting with a decision-maker. So, when you demo, you must ask something that will move the sale forward.”
Hopefully, with this advice you can begin to design effective demos that build your clientele and lead you to greater sales.