Peter Cohan

Buyer’s Perspective – “That was very helpful

A colleague who often assists customers in selecting software relates a true-life story regarding the impact of poorly-constructed and poorly-delivered demos: At the close of a demo from one of several candidate vendors, the key player at the prospect said, "That was very helpful…." ...

A Tool to Capture Discovery Information

A very nice tool is now available to capture and communicate prospect discovery/qualification information, internally within your organization. At a high level, the tool from pebble Discovery (www.pebblediscovery.com) helps to avoid your prospect asking, "Didn't I just answer all of these questions from...

20,000 Words Per Day

The author, Joseph Sommerville, notes: "Effective communication skills are essential to successful business development. Yet they're often under-emphasized and sometimes completely ignored. Why? Because we communicate so much and so often (approximately 20,000 words per day) we often take it for granted. But regardless...

Remote Demos – and Screen Savers

I've now seen this happen several times… You are watching a vendor present a demo remotely and, after about 10 minutes, the "audience" computer switches to its screen-saver. There are a few moments of thrashing as someone leaps to move the mouse – and...

“SE Whisperer”

Here is a great article/blog entry from a sales person's perspective about interactions with their presales counterparts: http://www.salesgrok.com/grok/2008/11/se-whisperer.html. For more tips and articles on demonstration effectiveness skills and methods, email me at [email protected] or visit our website at www.SecondDerivative.com. For demo tips, best practices,...

The Buyer’s Perspective: “Questioning Software’s Usability”

An article by Harold Hambrose in Baseline Magazine entitled "Questioning Software's Usability" raises a number of buyer-perspective issues well worth noting: • "How do they know the tool will be effective in the hands of your employees?" – this is, in essence, a direct recommendation...

What Makes a Demo Truly Remarkable?

What makes customers say, "Remember the time that vendor did that really amazing demo?" What is the difference between a good demo and a Truly Great Demo!? They're remarkable. They're memorable. They stand out from all of the other demos...

The Recent CSO Insights Report Is

The authors report that those organizations that train their sales teams in presentation and demonstration skills enjoy marked increases in close rates. Here's more detail… The CSO Insights Sales Performance Optimization 2009 Survey Results and Analysis notes that: • Selling is getting harder. (1) •…

Miller Heiman 2009 Sales Best Practices Study – Thoughts

Miller Heiman just released the results of their October 2008 study, which defines "World-class" sales organizations as being much more likely to achieve their targets. The study shows that in World-class sales organizations: - Sales and marketing are much more aligned to customer needs -…

Buyer’s Perspective Regarding SaaS Offerings

A recent article in eWeek gives us insights into our customers' perspective when they are contemplating purchasing SaaS offerings ("Taking Measure of SAAS Reliability", eWeek, January 19, 2009). Specifically, the article includes a section sub-headed "Questions for the provider", which include: - "Make sure the...

DemoWorks – Recording Tool

I note a (potentially new) demo recording tool is available: DemoWorks, by ComponentOne. It appears to offer a reasonable range of recording and delivery functions – including the availability of a free "Community" version. The Community version limits recordings to 30...

Great Demo! – For Development?

No, not necessarily for teaching developers how to demo to others in their organization and to customers (although that is a good idea…!), but rather more interestingly, I've had several reports from Great Demo! Workshop customers of how Development teams use Great Demo! tools...

Brief, Good Article on Demos Done by John Chambers

Here is an article by Carmine Gallo about John Chambers' demos, as prepared and supported by Jim Grubb (Cisco's Chief Demo Officer…): http://www.businessweek.com/smallbiz/content/feb2009/sb20090210_425196.htm?campaign_id=yhoo A few good ideas and an easy read. For other information and articles on demonstration effectiveness skills and methods, email me at...

Demos to Mixed Local and Remote Audiences – Tips to Handle Combination Situations

What is the strategy for handling situations where you are face-to-face with one group of customers and other participants are connecting remotely? Treat the entire session as if it is a Remote Demo. Yes, this will force you, as the presenter, to remain at...

Crossing the Chasm Neatly Summarized

I recently saw a crisp explanation of Geoffrey Moore's "Crossing the Chasm" key groups, with each group's perspective summarized in a few words: Techies – Try it! Visionaries – Get ahead of the herd… Pragmatists – Stick with the herd… Conservatives – Hold on…! Skeptics…

Technology, Entertainment, Design – Terrific Talks and Presentations

The team at TED (www.ted.com) has been providing a platform to showcase some of the most stimulating, interesting and entertaining presentations for years. Exploring the publicly-available presentations (as videos) on their website offers a wonderful opportunity to see some of the best presenters...

International Cultural Differences and Guidelines – Website

I just ran across an excellent website (http://www.executiveplanet.com/index.php?title=Main_Page) that lists information on a range of countries and cultural norms for each, including (using Australia as an example): Australia: About Australia About Australia Australia: Appointment Alert! Making appointments Australia: Business Dress Guidelines for business dress Australia:…

Debilitating Demo Diseases: Deadendedness

Deadendedness – Death by Cul-de-Sac Symptoms: Presenter pursues non-productive pathways, perusing pointless possibilities and dead-ends. Elongates a demo segment from what could have been accomplished in 5 mouse-clicks to 24 minutes of detailed explanation, covering all possible options and settings. Presenter may...

Twas the Night Before the Big Demo

(With apologies to Clement Clarke Moore) 'Twas the night 'fore the demo and all through the house Not a creature was stirring, 'cept my SC and his mouse; I'd proposed a big licensing deal with great care In hopes a big order soon would be…

Debilitating Demo Diseases: Acronymophilia

Acronymophilia Symptoms: Fits of sentences filled with vendor-specific acronyms, used both as nouns and verbs. Assumption that audience has already been exposed to these dozens of acronyms and has a comfortable, working understanding of them. Looks of confusion in the audience, followed...

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