I often struggle with the approaches of communicating value. I have seen really great examples of how value selling has changed a deal for the positive and I have seen examples where value selling has turned the deal on its side. In most cases, the reason for the conversation around value going sideways was because “the expert” wasn’t in the room and the sales team got out over their skis.
This can be for any number of reasons but the main reason I have seen is due to the model used to calculate value being too complex and hard to follow. Well if your sales team cannot communicate it, how on earth will the customer ever be able to take ownership of it and sell when you cannot be in the room? Let’s face it they can’t and herein lies the problem. As someone who spends every hour of the day helping companies move the ability to sell value into the sales team (and even the channel in many cases) I have spent many a sleepless night trying to come up with a solution to that specific problem.
SIMPLE, CONSISTENT, & TRANSPARENT
Regardless of the model, ROI Calculator, TCO Calculator, etc. If you do not keep the way you communicate value to the customer SIMPLE, CONSISTENT, AND TRANSPARENT, you run the risk of the having a sub-optimal outcome of all of your hard work. So how do we do this?
- Land on a consistent way of calculating value at a high level: Please comment and I would be happy to give you some thoughts on how I approach this part of the problem. If you can get to a point where anyone can understand you benefits, then you have accomplished the goal
- Stay the course: One of the biggest challenges to adoption is a moving target, especially when it comes to sales people. They do not have the time nor inclination to play “follow the bouncing ball” when it comes to their sales conversations
- No Black Box: I have seen this with many tools (home grown and commercial). The simple fact is if you cannot trace both the numbers and the rationale then you will never be able to survive without the “expert” to explain even the basics. That simply DOES NOT scale
If you do this correctly, you can have the experts focus on the truly challenging multi-million dollar or very strategic snowflake deals and transform you sales team into a force that can differentiate not just what they sell but how they sell it!