People love bright, shiny tips. This isn’t one.
But it is a great sales story about using videos during in person sales calls to win deals.
I was pretty inspired by Linda’s story and believe you will be as well.
Linda at the Gate
Linda Hardwick sells some pretty high-dollar security doors, and often needs an approved vendor partner to get her into government facilities to meet with prospects.
After working for weeks to secure a sales appointment at the Port Authority in Houston, Linda’s distributor partner was unable to join her for the appointment due to a last-minute conflict.
The prospect was naturally distrustful, since he’d only interacted with Linda’s partner up to that point.
To have a fighting chance of winning over this prospect without her partner, Linda had two options:
Option #1: Leave the prospect with a brochure and HOPE she got another chance to return with her partner (can you say ‘extended sales cycle’?).
Option #2: Share something unique to grab the prospect’s attention fast, and use it to trigger a deeper conversation.
Hope is not a strategy and, we all know it.
Yet how many of us have been in similar situations and taken the easy path?
I know I’m guilty of caving in and tucking my head to fear.
Making excuses like:
- It wasn’t meant to be today.
- He wasn’t going to buy anyway.
- Why does this always happen to me?
Look at those excuses carefully. Which of them do you feel?
Which of them do your reps feel?
Linda on the other hand did not fall to those fears and excuses.
What happened next?
Linda sells security doors. Remember?
During the walk from the front gate to her prospect’s office, she paid attention to her surroundings to mentally gather examples of where her products could benefit the prospect.
Knowing she only had a few minutes, she actually took out her iPad during the walk and cued up a product video.
The short hi-res demonstration video showed a security system currently in place in a similar government facility.
Importantly, the video showed the conclusion she wanted him to reach—e.g., “These doors could fit right into our facility today and solve a major problem.”
The prospect had no problem visualizing this because Linda set it up perfectly with her observations of her surroundings.
The video fit what the prospect knew of his industry and peers, so he could easily picture the result past the sale.
As a matter of fact, here’s the video ~1 min long…
How did the rest of the meeting go?
As Linda tells us, the prospect ended up watching 10 minutes of videos of different doors and features on Linda’s iPad.
Ten minutes is an eternity if you ever tried to engage a prospect that doesn’t want you there in first place.
45 minutes later…
…Linda and her prospect were discussing how to solve one of his pain points: “tail-gating” (when people sneak into a building at the last moment after someone swipes their security card).
Not bad for a sales rep that should, for all purposes, have been shut out of the call in the first place.
We can’t guarantee you Linda’s results, given variables like your reps’ training, skill level, and so on.
But, at a minimum, Linda’s story should spark ideas for employing visual cues and assets in a mobile sales tool, or app on devices your team already owns.
The other half of the story
What’s not discussed in the glory of the moment is how Linda’s company set her up for success.
So let’s take a look at the work that went into the story above.
- She had an iPad
- She had a mobile sales app on the iPad
- She was well-trained on when and how to use it
- She had access to RELEVANT short product videos on her device without Internet access
This did not happen by chance. Rather by design.
Linda’s management provided her with the tools and training to act decisively in a situation that should truly have extended her sales cycle.
That’s how you get your sales team past their excuses and fears.