Monday, June 10, 2013

4 simple points to make sales proposals (or any proposal) actually useful

Useful in the four-fold but simple sense that it tells the target audience what it really wants to know, helps them make a decision, clarifies what's wrong, if anything, and doesn't waste anyone's time. And I think the list can be reduced to three.

Becker: 4 simple points to make your sales proposals actually useful - Kansas City Business Journal:

Spoiler alert:
1. Competitive pricing (not necessarily the lowest)
2. Proof that product/service performs as you say it will
3. Basis for trust in you and your company

However, I think this does actually oversimplify.  The examples the author uses, insurance and cellphone service, are usually well-understood. Or at least we think we understand. My point is, a good sales pitch will help the prospect understand that they do NOT understand -- that there's something they've missed (ideally through no fault of their own). That's the basis of the "challenger sale" -- which as its name suggests, pushes or perhaps nudges the prospect into slightly uncomfortable territory, making it more likely to gain their full attention and to be open to your new idea, which will relieve that discomfort. Lots of evidence and well worth considering.

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