The next few question sections are what make up the core essence of the sales system.
They include Financial & Emotional Impact “Implications” questions, Decision requirements, and Call to Action Questions (the most important).
Something that I’d like to make note of is that you can use variations of these questions, they do not have to be asked or phrased the exact same way.
There’s definitely a degree of flexibility in selling software, but what I can promise you is that most folks are not (but should) be asking these types of question in the back half of a first call:
Category 3: Implication Questions
- How is the way that you are currently doing things affecting your overall productivity within your job function?
- What financial impact is this having on your busines?
- How might this issue be affecting your company’s growth?
Category 4: Decision Requirements
- Who else is involved in making this decision?
- Who are the individuals involved in making this decision and what are their roles?
- What do you think is going to be important to them during the presentation?
- What benefits/advantages/features would you like me to focus on during the presentation that they will care about covering?
*The question above is crucial because if you are doing an executive presentation or setting it up for another colleague, this is a great way to make sure you have everything prepared in advance.
There might be many different features/functionality of your platform, and you want to make sure that you are showing the group of prospects those SPECIFIC functions that they will most care about.
*Do not spend time or resources covering aspects of the platform that you think they will care about. Make sure that you do your due diligence and only put something in front of your audience that you know will have both a logical and emotional impact on them. You need to move the needle here.
- How high of a priority is this for you and your team?
- What does the decision making process look like? What are the steps and what do they entail?
- When would you like to go live on a platform like this?
*This question is vital because when you get an idea of when that prospect wants to “go live” on your platform, you can then trace a very specific sequence of events to that outcome. This is also known as an S.O.E. and is perhaps one of the most useful tools one can have in establishing a clear way to partnership with a prospect.
Note: Christian does private and highly personalized trainings on S.O.E. and there will be a highly focused manuscript product launch on this topic and the softwaresalesguru sales process in late Spring, 2017 .
If you have an immediate need to learn more about what an S.O.E. is and how to use it, fill out a Contact Us Form for a complimentary consultation call. You can also email our team directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- What is your timeline for a final decision being made?
- What other offerings are you looking at?
- Who else are you considering to solve this business problem?
- What would keep you from making a decision?
- What do you think would prevent the team from moving forward?
- How does our projected investment for SOLUTION XYZ align to your budget?
- Do you and the team have budget already allocated for this project? If so, how much does that look like so that I can set expectations with my VP of Sales.
Category 5: Call to Action
- This is where it is your job to do an overview of the buying concept, build around the prospect’s pain and tie to your company’s benefit (whatever that may be).
- Gain commitment for either a secondary needs assessment call or preferably a product demonstration. Set the expectations when it comes to how much time that will take. Doesn’t matter, but be upfront with the prospect and make sure they communicate this to (if any) additional colleagues/decision makers who are intended to be participating in the second call.
- Gain commitment for access to an economic sponsor if you are not speaking with that person already. This is KEY.
- Client should review sequence of event to an outcome with you on the phone. In other words, what needs to happen on their end from now ——–> Go Live Date. What adjustments (if any) would need to be made ahead of time. Use the excuse that you will need to speak with your implementation team about this subject matter ahead of time because of how many implementations are occuring at once.
- Last step in the process is to reconfirm decision timeline and this can then be summarized in a follow up email you will send to them after the call.*