One of my customer’s sales management team were recently summoned to a European conference where new solution sales techniques were passed down from a central corporate training resource. One particular topic I know they all liked was about talking credible numbers when it came to benefits.
All too often, their reps (known as account managers) would talk in telephone numbers about what wonderful pots of gold would be at their end of their purchase order rainbow. Yet it seems that many a buyer has grown weary of yet another cleverly produced spreadsheet detailing how hundreds of thousands of cash can be released onto their bottom-line. Rather than talk Zim dollars, it can often be the smallest of improvements that catches the eye and wins the day.
They called this “The Power Of One”. They also believe it also suits buyers who’s natural currency is not cash, but rather prefer percentages. There is of course a dominant school suggesting you simply must bring everything down to the stark pounds-shillings-pence amount – I heartily go along with this – yet it’s how such a figure is arrived at that could be the ‘power of one’. How much extra credibility attaches to your proposal if you say it derives from a simple “1%” improvement in a particular area? It is, my friends suggest, a powerful argument which benefits from an air of believability.