The “commodity sell” is, generally, anathema for the complex sale. Nevertheless, for clients of mine with products that operate “under the radar,” just a bit of “commodity sell” does the trick to drive the performance of direct marketing (essentially a combination of telemarketing, teleprospecting, and webinars) as a driver for the complex sale.
If contacts at enterprise size business prospects know nothing about your product, and little about your niche (regardless of its strategic importance) there is no other option than to include a presentation of what you offer within your early conversations with the prospect. This presentation provides just the “pinch” of commodity sell to spark contact interest in furthering conversations and, thereby, the gathering of information that you must do to qualify just who this contact is and what he/she does relative to important related projects and plans (or the lack thereof) at your enterprise business prospect.
It is absolutely essential that the information that you convey via the presentation be completely consistent with any subsequent information your sales team may communicate to the specific contact as well as any other contacts at the prospect. Understand that your product is still under the radar of the marketplace; therefore, the information constitutes the only branding that you possess. Whenever the information changes, then your brand changes and, therefore, the power of repetition along with the development of subliminal associations is substantially diminished. Keep the presentation consistent, better yet, require that any and all references to features, benefits, value proposition, etc make refernce to the same uniform information.
The importance of this point is doubly critical if your product is an integrated solution. Permitting communication of ambiguous information abvout an integrated solution provides the prospect with an opportunity to break up your solution into components. This opportunity spells doom for the complex sale and lots of revenue will be left on the table. I have worked with clients with this problem who saw projected revenue growth delayed by six months, and longer, as planned complex sales trended into commodity sales of components with dangerously lower pricing to customers.
If you opt for a direct marketing approach to product promotion and lead generation then do consider a hybrid method that includes a highly controlled and consistent presentation to contacts. Review any/all printed and electronic collateral to ensure that information is completely consistent. Revise as required or risk diluting your potential for complex sales, not to mention precious revenue.
© IMB Enterprises, Inc. & Ira Michael Blonder, 2011 All Rights Reserved