Software Sales Tips by Matt Wolach

Sales Tips

Read Between the Lines

During Discovery, it’s up to you to figure out what the prospect needs

This is something that usually only experts know, but I think it’s time to share this secret with you.

You see, average sales people, they’re typically trying to do what their prospect is asking for. If the prospect asks for this, they’re trying to make that happen.

Well that sounds good. But, that’s a problem. There’s a problem with this and the problem is that as humans we are limited to knowledge of what’s around us and what we understand.

If they want a quicker task- if they want to be able to accomplish this particular thing a little bit more quickly, the average sales person, founder, or leader in a software company will try to update their product or fix the product to make that thing happen. They want to make that happen just like the prospect said.

And that sounds really good. But the expert sales person, the expert founder, they’re the ones who are going to read between the lines.

You see, it’s up to you to figure out what the prospect actually needs, not what they’re wanting or what they’re hoping for. It’s up to you. The prospect doesn’t know what’s possible. You are the one who knows. You are the one who needs to draw that out of them.

But, how do you do this?

That sounds pretty challenging. First, you need to be an expert in your industry. No, you do not have to be there for 20 years and go through the grinding and toiling for that long.

Really you need to dive in and really understand what your customers are looking for. Once you do that then you’ll have a good idea of the structure within the industry and what really needs to happen.

And then second, you need to perform a great Discovery process. You really need to learn what is in the customer’s head. Learn what their situation is, what the goals are, what pain they’re going through. It’s critical.

If you can do that, then you’re going to be able to associate your product to their concern, to their pain and solve their challenges.

In this particular situation, I like to point out to my clients one of the quotes that I think is fantastic. It was Henry Ford and he said, “If I would have done what my customers were asking for, I would have built them a faster horse.”

That’s how I can explain this: don’t do exactly what your customers are asking for. Figure out what the problem is. Figure out what the job to be done is, and then see how you can get there and get them there.

If you want to know how to be better at discovery, download my free guide: The DOs and DONTs of the Discovery Call. It’ll be a quick way for you to understand some serious things you might be doing that are harming your sales process.