Sales and marketing have always been considered the backbone of a business. Customers are the king of the market, and salespeople are the warriors. Sales are the most crucial part of the business. Every individual has a different opinion and thoughts about it. People say ‘to sell’ is the most challenging role and some people treat sales as the coolest part of the business.
This article will be helpful to all the salespeople out there. It has in-depth information on what a sales pitch is like, and what factors to consider and not to consider while selling.
It is the only key to generating revenue for the company. Sales is a root cause of business. Perhaps, you may know how this world is rapidly growing. Human need, want, and desire are never-ending processes. Keeping this in mind, thousands of businesses commence every year. It’s not only in India but across the globe. Some may survive, and some get shut within a few years after commencement. There can be a lot of factors, and one of the main reasons could be a lack of sales. The perception of customers is simple: they do not like to get sold. Hence, salespeople are always under performance pressure.
They say power originates from the business. If you remove the selling part, you will see the power slowly fading away. Once you understand the metaphor of sales and its techniques, things become easy. Now the question is, how to be an effective salesperson, and what are all things you need to be a performer?
Sale is a combination of art and conviction. It’s one thing to use a script but it is vital to know what and how to say it with the right tonality.
What is a Sales Pitch?
Sales script or, you can call it a sales presentation, value proposition to convince buyers to purchase your products. Essentially, engaging customers to propose products clearly and concisely that may provide high returns and create more value for their business.
Using a sales script may seem like reading from a document to some of you. Nobody would ever recommend reading out the entire script. Even the customers are smart to catch you on call. The main idea is to practice the information before making a call to a prospect. As and when needed, you don’t get stuck or hesitate to refer to the script and deliver it at the right time. It is the same as any other movie, drama, or play script.
Types of sales pitches
- Cold call pitch
- Elevator pitch
- The social media pitch
- The questioning pitch
- Email pitch
- Follow-up pitch
Sales pitches of top salespeople:
The Indian market is vast and diverse. The market is divided into two segments 35% Urban and 65% rural. It has a huge potential to sell and buy. Yet, it is still difficult to sell here. Bargaining is the routine of Indian consumers. In the latest update, Tata Motors sold more than 78000 units of cars in August, recorded as 36% of sales growth. Similarly, Mahendra has also reviewed the sales this month. It wouldn’t be possible without the Salespeople.
Top salespeople are committed to shaping killer sales pitches:
- Research – Knowing the market makes it easier to target your customers. Model your sales pitch based on demographics such as age groups, genders, ethnicities, and professions.
- Value proposition – The key to any sales is a value proposition to your customers and prospects. It should be enticing and impressive to gain customers’ attention.
- Press the pain point – Personal touch in the Indian market is decisive. It can create loyalty and build a long relationship.
- Storytelling – Engaging the audience by telling a story about the product or service can raise their interest. Moreover, it helps to clarify the product’s features or uses. Sometimes, storytelling takes precedence over everything else.
- References – The scope of reference in our market really works in the sales and service industries. If you recommend your friend to open a bank account in HDFC, they will surely go for it without hesitation.
The disaster of a bad sales pitch
Getting prospects on call for the first time is tough. What’s worse is when the sales call doesn’t go well. The way you present can decide how prospects perceive you. One small mistake can crush your possibility of creating an impression on the prospects. But when you do it right, boom! You are just a step away from positively closing the sales call.
Imagine asking the stupid question from a prospect – why are you not buying products from me and buying from others? To this question, what if your prospect shoots an email slamming that salesperson? It sure does get worse.
Prospects don’t have anything to lose, but salespeople definitely have a lot too. Now understand how a prospect may feel when somebody says the same thing. Product pitching is the most sensitive part of sales. Nobody likes to sound bad on a call with a prospect. You tend to be cautious when you draft your script. You cannot take a chance to lose by using a script that does not make sense to the prospect.
It took several years and a lot of human effort to build the twins tower in Noida, and it only took 9 seconds to demolish the whole building into scrap. The same is the case with sales, it takes a lot of hard work, confidence, and dedication to create expression in front of a prospect but it only takes a few bad words to ruin.
Let’s understand in what ways a seller can ruin the essence of pitching:
A common mistake salespeople can make is when they call and directly offer a discounted price to the customers.
Caller: Hi, Mr. Prospect. My name is Rob, and I am calling from XYZ ltd to offer you our valuable products for your company. Please give me one minute of yours, and I will make sure not to waste your time. Prospect: Okay, go on.
Caller - Our CRM software has everything to satisfy your business needs - organizing, staffing, and managing customer data to simplify your work. This offer is valid for a limited time. Honestly, I don't want that you lose this excellent opportunity. We have a 25% discount on this service, and this offer is valid till the 10th of September. Would you be interested in buying it? Prospect: Hell noo! [call hangup]
Such calls will never be productive. There is not even a 1% of chance that the prospect will buy from this salesperson. Everything is wrong in this call, from greetings to the end. The worst part of this call is that it is not a two-way communication. It is more like someone is reading a script or a robot being placed to make automation calls.
The sale is all about the buyer. You have to ensure buyers genuinely need your products for their betterment. You got to understand that marketing and psychology go together – don’t just be a salesperson. Try to know what customer needs and why they should spend their money with your company. Try playing the role of a psychologist or a powerful salesperson where you gather more intel about them to park your products.
There is nothing like an ice-breaking moment in this conversation. Bad sales pitches or questions not only cost you sales. Stop sounding like a salesperson, act like a closer. Try to eliminate those terms or sentences that may irritate a customer.
Let’s take another example of a cold pitch and notice how different it is from the previous one.
You: Good Morning/Afternoon. I am Rob calling from ABC Pvt ltd. Prospect: What is the purpose of your call? You: Our company ABC ltd is a digital marketing agency, and it has come to our knowledge that you are looking for digital marketing assistance to promote and sell your products and services on multiple platforms. Prospect: Yes, that's correct. You: I am glad to hear. Sir, If I am not wrong, you have all sorts of plastic household goods? Prospect: We are a manufacturer and distributor of plastic goods. I want to expand my market all over India. You: Indeed, I can understand. I have some remarkable ideas to help grow your business digitally across the country. Prospect: How? You: Mr. Prospect, is it okay if I arrange an appointment today so that we can have a fruitful discussion? I ensure all your doubts are covered and answered during our meeting. Sounds good? Prospect: Yes yes, you can come to my office at 5. You: Perfect. Thank you for giving me your time over the phone. I look forward to seeing you.
How perfectly and professionally the caller has handled the prospect. The tele-caller was confident and asked the precise questions that the prospect comfortable answering. He was well-versed in the research, and he knew where to target. The caller has not revealed a pinch of details about service charges and their prices. He solely focused on making the prospect comfortable, collecting some intel about the prospect, and smartly arranging the appointment.
The magic of a well-crafted sales pitch
A good pitch begins with a solid foundation, this foundation defines the quality of your pitch. If due diligence has not been done how would one expect to create an influential sales pitch? Here are a few pointers that need to be taken care of before formulating a sales pitch that can induce buying behavior.
- Know your audience – They are buying not your product but a solution to a problem. Time needs to be put into defining whether the audience is a potential user, influencer, buyer/decision-maker. Research the positions and do background research on them from a professional network platform like LinkedIn. Research about their company, and competitors and go through their website, relevant news, and articles.
- What are the goals for your sales presentation? Is it feedback, a test, purchase or lease or subscription, or a pilot or induce buying behavior?
- Define your product’s pitch – The development process is important as this is what will be conveyed to the prospect. The process includes – The main problem, your solution, how it works, and whether you will present a demonstration with pictures or graphs. Tech specs if applicable, what is the competition doing about it and how are they solving the existing problem? The testimonials and reviews by other users.
- Create a suitable presentation – the pitch should explain the narrative and not the other way around. If slides are too busy then it would not be very effective.
- Define your company – Add the talking points that introduce the business and the USP. Don’t assume that people have read what you have sent them in advance. Re-iterate the necessary points if the prospects haven’t gone through the same.
- What pain points will the company solve for them? Make the problem as real as possible and showcase how it has been affecting other businesses, along with the opportunities aligned with the same. Use data numbers and quantitative reasoning to qualify the problem or the solution.
These foundations will define how well your sales pitch performs.
Why and how does this process of developing your sales pitch work?
The most important part of a sales pitch is the prospect – the one who will be the audience of your sales presentation. After all, a sales pitch is the first in-person interaction. Through the above sales pitch process, you will understand how the audience thinks. The pain points that need to be addressed and the solution that you provide. When you know your audience you will be able to create a deeper connection and thereby can influence their buying decisions
A poorly delivered sales pitch can defeat the purpose and reduce sales. A good sales pitch will be promising, educational, inspiring, and motivate the prospect to in making an informed decision.
With proper research, your product will stand out from the competition. Your pitch should grab the attention of the consumer irrespective of the competitor’s actions.
Also, remember that sometimes showing more than telling is a better way to pitch the ideas or the product. Through pictorial representations, the pitch will become more effective and an engaging way to sell.
Make the pitch relatable so that it is hard for the consumer to forget about it. A mediocre pitch shall bring in only mediocre results. An extraordinary pitch will encourage interaction and will build a long-lasting impression.
The science behind sales presentation techniques
Now that we know what makes a sales pitch effective, why does one pitch opens up the possibility for an increase in sale and another pitch reduces the possibility of the purchase? Is the presentation well-defined, engaging, and persuasive or is it confusing, uninspiring, or lacking the pull?
To arouse buying behavior, a science-backed strategy should be used to determine how one should effectively convey their sales pitch thereby amplifying buyer receptiveness. Research done in the book The Science of Selling teaches how to scientifically influence consumer decisions and close the deal. The research talks about the cognitive abilities of a person and how they interpret data accordingly. The cognitive abilities of any person can grasp a small amount of information. Our mind can soak in information but once the brain’s limit surpasses, the communicated information becomes redundant and its efficiency is reduced. The cognitive ability to grasp that information is reduced significantly.
Too many words and options can create confusion and the brain can have trouble while making the purchase decision, thereby diminishing sales.
In a social experiment conducted, a grocery store in California held sample testing for 24 different jams. The sales recorded in that week were a mere 3%. The following week they offered only 6 flavors of jam – the sales rose to a whopping 900%.
What do we learn from this?
When buying options are limited it boosts the purchasing decisions. With so many options the brain becomes overwhelmed and taking a decision becomes rather difficult. Reviewing so many flavors the brain reached its cognitive limits – making the person confused and this will lead to either
(a). Refusal to buy or
(b). Even if they buy they will question the decision, whether it was the right choice or not.
It is necessary for sales personnel to review their sales pitch. The strategy to engulf the prospect in multiple options thinking it may help them to make a decision is not an effective sales tip. Too much information obstructs a person to make an informed decision. Therefore, to each salesperson, it is necessary to note that less is more. When it comes to selling a product make it less challenging for the prospect.
Make the sales pitch simple and do not make it demanding for them to process. They should be able to evaluate with ease. This will definitely give you an edge with your sales pitch.
How do you do this?
- Communicate only the necessary or required information for them to confidently make an informed buying decision. This will make a visible change in the sales of the product.
- Review the sales pitch and ask yourself – Is it a piece of the necessary information or can it be removed?
- Think hard about what the buyers need to be able to make a buying decision. Anything more than that removes that from your pitch.
This will increase the effectiveness of your sales presentation – as science backs up your sales pitch!
A sales pitch should not be a horrendous experience. Rather with these techniques, you can craft a sales pitch that strikes all the right chords. Sales personnel plays an important and complex role, they need to be adaptable to changing situations and draft their sales presentation accordingly.
The sales pitch is a well-defined opportunity for you to showcase your product and what benefit it brings to the consumer. Regardless of the kind of business, the possibility of reaching potential clients and the ability to deliver an effective sales pitch – is a recipe for success and thereby can induce buying decisions. It also improves performance and creates a long-lasting connection with the prospect