Mastering the Difference Between Demonstration and Application Based Selling
There’s a big difference between simply presenting your product or service to a prospect and carefully recommending your product or service as something that solves a specific problem, fills an exact want, satisfies a stated need or provides a unique answer that they’re really seeking.
In the final analysis, prospects are rarely seeking an off-the-shelf solution. They want a customized recommendation that goes way beyond what the typical demonstration based sales model can support. The only reason your prospects will buy anything from your reps is if they can see that the alternative they offer is more valuable than simply doing nothing or purchasing from your competitor.
Applying the Principles Behind Application Based Selling
Application Based Selling Principle #1:
The transfer of ownership must occur in a prospect’s mind before the prospect will sign on any dotted line! This is all about the mental transfer that can only occur when your salespeople actively involve their prospect and enable them to see themselves using whatever they're selling.
Remember, selling is definitely a hands-on activity – especially when it comes to the buyer’s hands.
Application Based Selling Principle #2:
All sales degenerates into a struggle over price in the absence of a value interpreter. What does this mean?
If the prospect is constantly saying that they can get an equal or better price somewhere else, the rep has failed to create sufficient value for their product or service. They’re saying they don’t see sufficient value to offset the price. As a consequence, they have one, single goal. To get a lower price!
Application Based Selling Principle #3:
All benefits are equal until someone points out the difference.
Smart salespeople never assume anything. And you need to get your salespeople to do the same thing.
Just because your product has a handle on it doesn’t mean that your prospect even knows it’s a handle! Plus, the prospect likely needs to be shown how much easier your product is to carry. In fact, if the salesperson is really smart they'll let their prospect feel how much easier it is to carry than your competitor’s product by letting them actually tote it around.
Never assume that the prospect understands the benefit that a feature offers – encourage your reps always point it out. Also, be sure to show every benefit you have as if it’s an exclusive to your product or service. The reason for that? If your competition fails to bring theirs up, yours will become an exclusive!