Getting clients and leads on the same page as the sales representative is absolutely essential to any successful sales proposal. As technology becomes increasingly important in every industry, educating customers on specific technologies and how they integrate into your specific products and services becomes just as important. One of the challenges that comes with this process is that fact that knowledge about technology varies greatly from person to person, and it is not always easily apparent who has a high level of understanding in technology and who barely knows the difference between a word processor and a web browser.
In order to resonate with your customers, it is imperative that you create sales proposals that speak to their level of technological expertise. The following are a few simple steps to help in that process.
The Technology Discovery Process
The discovery process has long been a well-integrated part of the sales process. Understanding your customer’s specific needs is absolutely imperative to the success of any sales model, regardless of industry. Increasingly, this means understanding not only what your customer’s needs and expectations are, but also the level of technological expertise they will appreciate and understand.
As with most sales techniques, the technology discovery process should consist primarily of asking your customers questions and giving them the opportunity to explain exactly the level of technological expertise they expect and can handle. Your sales representatives should have a set of questions that can help narrow down not only the customer’s level of technology expertise, but in which specific areas of technology the customer is comfortable or uncomfortable. The insight sales process can provide useful guidelines and a framework to make an effective discovery process.
It is important to remember that the technology discovery process will inherently evolve over time, as technology and its relationship and relevance to various industries evolves and develops. It is absolutely critical that your sales teams understand these changes, as outdated and irrelevant questions could look particularly negative for any company trying to position itself as a technology expert.
The Value of the Technological Discovery Process
There are many reasons why understanding exactly how much technological knowledge your customers have is important. For the purposes of this article, we will focus on just one: in any industry, products and solutions that use technology will be more highly valued by customers who understand how technology works with your solutions to provide benefit. The education process is absolutely essential for customers who have a low level of technology knowledge, as they will often be unwilling to invest significant capital in products they do not fully understand. It is the job of your sales team to educate them as much as possible, as well as to explain the specific value a technology solution provides in terms they will be able to relate to.
The insight sales process is a highly-effective way of building selling techniques that are effective at the overall discovery process and the sales process in general. Integrating dynamic technological discovery into the process makes the insight sales process even more useful.
Dynamic Sales Proposals
Once you have an understanding of the level of technological expertise your customers (or potential customers) have, the next step is to make sure they are properly matched with a sales representative or sales team. The sales team should always have at least the level of relevant technological understanding as the customer, and ideally they will have a moderate to significantly greater understanding. However, if possible, you should try to reverse your most experienced tech gurus for customers that have high levels of technological knowledge. With any customer, the goal should be to provide solutions they are comfortable with and understand, while simultaneously growing their technology understanding gradually over time, so that they can gain a greater understanding for the value your solutions provide to their business.