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Many salespeople spend their time pitching a product with numbers, data, and facts. They believe that creating a compelling argument only on the basis of data is what is going to sell their products. But the fact of the matter is, that’s not what is going to get a prospect interested in your product or service. They don’t want a fact sheet of what your product does. They want a story.
A skillfully constructed sales pitch can pique your prospect’s interest in the opportunity you’re offering and persuade them to move forward with you. It’s so much more than just presenting facts and figures. It’s all about weaving an engaging story for your client in your sales pitch. This is why it’s important for you to learn how to use storytelling to influence decision-making and close more deals following your sales pitch.
Your sales pitch should not be about persuading a prospect to buy something. Instead, you should be using your sales pitch to encourage the prospect to continue onto the next step in their buying journey.
What Is A Sales Pitch?
When you think of the words “sales pitch” what comes to mind? Someone standing nervously in front of billionaires on Shark Tank or Dragon’s Den, babbling out facts and figures, hoping one of the Sharks or Dragons will bite?
Technically speaking, what they do on those shows are sales pitches, but reality isn’t a TV show, and you’re not a home entrepreneur. You’re a professional salesperson who needs the right kind of sales pitch for the right kind of prospects.
Unlike those people appearing on reality TV shows, you have the ability to make your sales pitch more versatile than they do. Yours can be an in-person pitch, or it can be a phone call, or an email. Your pitch can be delivered in front of a panel of decision-makers, like those on Shark Tank, or it can be delivered while at some kind of business luncheon, or even at a networking trade show. Every single time you speak to someone, whether on the phone, in person, or through email, about your product in the hopes that they will buy it, you’re making a sales pitch.
Another important thing to consider when attempting to write your perfect sales pitch script is that in the age of 240 character social media posts, and one-minute videos, our attention spans have begun to shrink. Long gone are the days of hour-long presentations. In fact, the first five or so minutes of any business conversation is what determines the way in which your interaction will continue. If you’ve not pitched a compelling story as to why your prospect needs your product within that time frame, there’s a good chance you won’t get much more time to explain yourself.
Sales Pitches For Different Situations
There are many different kinds of situations in which you will find yourself as a salesperson. And so it’s important that you have different sales pitches available to you for each of these situations. Below, you will find a sales pitch example for five different situations in which you will undoubtedly find yourself.
An inbound sale is one that comes to you through a prospect reaching out, whether by engaging with your website, signing up for a newsletter, attending a webinar you’re hosting, or even engaging with you directly as they search for a solution to a particular pain point they may have.
The best way to start an inbound sales pitch is to make it personal. Mention that you’ve noticed they attended your webinar/signed up for a newsletter/sent an email expressing a pain point, etc.
“Hi, [THEIR NAME],
This is [YOUR NAME], calling from [COMPANY NAME]. I’m calling because I noticed that you had attended our webinar on [X]. In the webinar, we discuss how our product does [X – A PAIN POINT IT SOLVES]. Do you find this to be a pain point for your company that you need a solution for?”
If they say yes.
“Okay, [THEIR NAME], that’s really good to know. I don’t want to take up too much of your time, as I know how busy you must be. I’d just like to gather a bit more information to see how we can help solve your problems.”
Here, you can ask a probing question or two to help build rapport and learn more about their situation. Probing questions include:
- Are you currently using a product that doesn’t solve this issue for you?
- What is your current situation?
- How would you describe the current problem you’re facing?
Once you’ve established a better understanding of their pain points and how your product could help ease them, you’re one step closer to closing the deal.
While many conflate outbound sales with cold calling, they’re not exactly the same thing. Cold calling typically revolves around the quantity of calls you’re making, while outbound sales calls focus on the quality of the calls. One of the most important things to remember when performing outbound sales pitches is to focus on the benefits your product can provide to consumers, not the features of the product itself.
“Hi, [THEIR NAME],
This is [YOUR NAME], calling from [COMPANY]. I’m reaching out to you today to introduce myself and my company, and share some information about our best practices. I’d love to talk to for a few minutes about how other companies in [THEIR INDUSTRY] are using [YOUR PRODUCT] to keep their global shipping operations safe and their cash flow steady, connect all [X] disciplines to ensure they achieve maximum efficiency, and differentiating themselves from their competition and getting more market share.
Do you have some time this week where we could discuss the benefits of [YOUR PRODUCT] further?”
If they say yes, make sure you actually schedule a day and time for the call. Offer them two potential days for the call, and then have them schedule it in their calendar. Send a follow up email prior to the call just saying that you’re looking forward to speaking with them.
Remember, cold calling is all about quantity. So you want to keep it as short and sweet as possible. You can take a tip from Adam Goldstein of Hipmunk, says Zendesk, who managed to secure $55 million in investments by using a two-sentence pitch. If you can fit a quick, cold calling sales pitch into a Twitter post, that’s a good length.
For example, Adam Goldstein’s $55 million two-sentence pitch simply said, “Hey, we can lower your distribution costs. Let me know who to talk to.”
Social selling is huge these days as more and more people and companies find themselves on social media. So don’t be afraid to throw out some sales pitches on social media if you see an in.
For example, if you’re scrolling through Twitter and see someone complaining about a specific pain point that your product or service can solve, message them about it.
“Hi [NAME], I noticed that you recently tweeted about [X]. [ANOTHER COMPANY] had that same issue not too long ago, and [YOUR PRODUCT] was able to help solve their issue in [LENGTH OF TIME].
Is this something you’d be interested in learning more about?”
LinkedIn is another great resource for social selling, as it’s full of professionals and companies who are always looking for that leg up. And with LinkedIn, you can easily use the search function to find posts that may align with a pain point that your product solves, and then you can quickly send off a message to whoever posted about said pain point.
Follow Up Pitches
So you’ve landed the phone call, or someone has responded to your cold email or social selling pitch. Now what? Well, now it’s time to give a follow up pitch. This will depend on where you left off the last time you spoke to your prospect, however, so it’s not really something we can give you a template for, without going into many different situations.
Essentially, your follow up should look something like this,
It’s [YOUR NAME] from [COMPANY] calling/emailing you for a quick follow up to our previous conversation.
I have the information you requested the last time we spoke, and I’d love to send it over to you if that works for you.
The last time we spoke, we discussed how [PRODUCT] could help [PAIN POINT]. You had said you needed to speak to [X] about this. Have you had the opportunity to do so yet?
I enjoyed speaking with you last week. I remembered that you had mentioned you were interested in [X – something personal, not necessarily company related], and I came across this article I thought you might like to read. [This one shows that you were practicing active listening while speaking to them. Sending a follow up email about something that they have a particular interest in helps to build rapport.
Sales Pitch Best Practices
There are a few best practices that you should employ when crafting your sales pitches. They’re just as important as the sales pitch themselves. They will help you to create a sales pitch that will put everything into perspective for your prospects and push them through the sales funnel quicker and more effectively than if you were to not employ them.
Keep It Short
As we previously mentioned, long behind us are the days when prospects had an hour to sit and listen to your entire presentation. With the way the world is today, prospects have very little time in their busy schedules to sit and listen for extended periods of time. So if you want to catch their interest, it’s imperative that you keep your sales pitch short and sweet, but also attention-grabbing so that they will want to keep listening. According to ZenDesk, email sales pitches should be kept under 300 words, cold calls should only last about eight minutes, and your sales presentation should only be 18 minutes or so.
Keep It Simple
You don’t want to bog down your prospects with facts and figures. That kind of data can be left for future conversations. Your initial pitch needs to be simple and straight to the point. What are the benefits of your prospect adopting your product or service? If they can’t figure out what you can do for them in the first few minutes of the conversation, they’ll likely pass you over for one of your competitors.
Explain Who Your ICP Is
This may seem like something you wouldn’t want to discuss with a prospect, but is, in fact, extremely important. The reason for that is because it’s not only important to ensure that your product will work for them, but also that they’re the kind of company that you want to work with. If they don’t fit your Ideal Customer Profile, you’ll end up wasting both their time and yours.
Explain The Problem You Solve
This may seem like an obvious thing to include, however, many salespeople spend so much of their time discussing what their product or service does, that they don’t actively focus on what problem of your prospect’s that it can solve. It’s great if your product can do something specific, but if that doesn’t relate to a pain point that your prospect has, your conversation isn’t going to go anywhere.
Give An Example Of Success From An Existing Client
Showing prospects examples of how your product or service was successful in easing pain points, or improving sales/productivity/efficiency, etc. for an existing client is a great way to get them further down the sales funnel. If they know that there are tangible use cases out there that have already tried your product and had it be successful, they are far more likely to want to convert as well. So when speaking to prospects, ensure that you have a couple of success stories on hand to relay to them.
Call To Action
A strong call to action is the best way to end a sales pitch with a prospect. Your CTA can be anything from a paragraph at the end of an email that says something like, “If you’re interested, let’s set up a phone call later this week,” to a “Launch” button on your website that says, “Do not press,” under it. HubSpot lists 40 call to action examples that you may want to check out. Just remember that you want a strong CTA that will entice your prospects to click, call, email, or learn more.
Sales Pitch Formats
Now that you’ve got a couple of sales pitch templates and the best practices down pat, let’s take a quick look at sales pitch formats.
1. Start your pitch with a question. As we’ve mentioned numerous times before in previous blogs, practicing active listening is incredibly important for sales reps. One way to do this is by starting your sales pitch with an open-ended question that will get your prospect talking. The more they talk about their company and potential pain points, the more information you can gather about how your product or service can help them.
Some examples of questions to ask are:
- “Can you tell me about your business?” Followed up by, “Who are your biggest competitors, and what separates your company from theirs?”
- “Could you walk me through a typical day for you?” Followed by, “What do you find to be the most time-consuming parts of your day?”
- “What do you hope to accomplish in the next [month/year/quarter]?” Which can be followed up with, “How are you planning to accomplish those goals?”
- “What is your company’s main way of evaluating new services or products?” Followed up by, “Do things like free trial periods make trying out a new product or service more enticing?”
2. Use data to strengthen your sales pitch. You don’t want to bombard your prospects with facts and figures that will make your sales pitch boring and too technical, but you do want to have some data on hand. Allowing prospects to get a glimpse into how your product or service measures up to your competitors, or how it increases sales/productivity/revenue, etc. will pique their interest while not filling their heads with numbers and percentages that they’re never going to remember.
3. Make use of storytelling. Being a sales rep isn’t just about laying out the facts on a sheet of paper and hoping the prospects lap it up. You need to weave an enticing tale about your product or service and how it’s helped other companies like theirs. Give examples, use hypotheticals, and get creative. Channel your inner storyteller and close those deals.
In the end, it’s up to you how you craft your sales pitch, but the most successful sales reps use tips and tricks like the ones above to close more deals than their competitors. Remember to always tout the benefits of your product or service, rather than listing off the features. Use storytelling to pique their interest, lay out some data for them to consume, give examples of clients you’ve helped successfully, and end with a strong call to action.
By following the above tips, you’ll be closing more deals in no time. For more tips about selling and closing deals, check out the Wingmate Blog, where we’ve laid out everything you need to know about hitting your goals and becoming a successful sales rep.
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