The best demo–a Great Demo!--is a conversations driven by mutual curiosity. Your goal is to learn more about a prospect’s current situation and needs while they want to learn more about your product and services and how you can help them.
“Before I demo to you, why don’t you demo to me what you are currently using?”
If a customer has an existing software system, this can be a wonderful way to understand the strengths, weaknesses and gaps in their current system–particularly from the customer’s point of view. They’ll tell you what they like, what they hate, what’s missing and a range of other delightful Discovery information.
Additionally, this also inverts the traditional process of the vendor presenting to the customer, to one of the customer presenting to the vendor–an experience often remembered by the customer as remarkable and interestingly different!
Serious Prospects Are Candid About Challenges
One of the ways to tell if an inquiry is serious is that they are willing to put their current challenges on the table. This takes several steps of sequential mutual disclosure/discovery but if a prospect just wants “the standard demo” beyond a basic get acquainted session–which can normally be addressed more directly without a demo–and is unwilling to expose more about their situation, much less give a demo or clear explanation of their view of current gaps or challenges, it’s probably a bad sign. The worst buyer approach is the RFP where they are unwilling to even entertain a conversation before you answer all of their questions in detail.
Related Blog Posts
- SKMurphy Newsletter Archive
- Great Demo Workshop Attendee: “Holy Crap! My Demos Have Too Much Detail”
- Recap of “How To Give a Great Demo” at CoFounders Club Wed-Apr-16-2014
- Ilya Semin of Datanyze on Value of Great Demo Workshop
- Chris Kane: Great Demo’s Impact On The VendorRisk Sales Presentation
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This is an excellent opportunity for individuals, small groups or for teams that have new hires.
We’ve found that these events are most productive when there are two or more participants from each organization (singletons are also fine). This helps to mimic real-life interactions as much as possible, both when preparing demos and delivering them in the role-play sessions.
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