Peter Cohan

Land and Expand: The Importance of the Delta

No CFO will approve a major expansion of software without a clear understanding of the value equation.  The challenge, often, is that the people who bought the 1 or 2 seats of the original “Land” purchase generally don’t have the experience to uncover and...

The REAL Buyer Stages…

Traditionally, vendors identify a set of Buyer Stages – the steps and thinking that a customer goes through en route to purchasing a product.  I think the traditional list is inaccurate and doesn’t reflect reality.  Here’s one example of the traditional list: “Classically, there are...

Early Adopters vs. Majority Prospects: Features vs. Solutions – and Doing Discovery

Early Adopters and Technology Adopters are inadvertently training us to deliver feature/function “Harbor Tour” demos…  But it’s not their fault; it’s ours…! Early Adopters and Technology Adopters love to hear and talk about new features and cool capabilities – and often identify problems themselves that...

Problem Solvers vs. Problem Finders

The world today respects problem solvers – without question.  Intriguingly, however, many senior managers are now assigning even higher value to problem finders or problem identifiers.  In the current regime of big-data-what-question-would-you-like-to-ask, people who can identify insightful questions to ask may be providing higher...

Technology Adoption Curve – And the Degree of Proof Your Customers Require

A simple way to tell where your customers are on the technology adoption curve is to assess the degree of proof they require prior to making a purchase. For example, very early in the development of a market, when you are presenting to Innovators and...

Other Vendors’ Demos – Great Source for Learning

I’m occasionally surprised to find presales staff who have never seen another vendor’s demo – not even demos from a competitor…  (So, if you haven’t seen demos from other vendors, it is time to do so!) For everyone, occasionally watching demos from other vendors is...

Uses (and Cautions) of Recorded Demos

Recorded demos offer some wonderful opportunities for delivering content – but need to be used with careful regards to your objectives and customer situations. Here are a few quick guidelines to contemplate: Training: - Excellent application. -...

Stunningly Awful Sales Tactics – The Future-Sales Prevention Team

Stunningly Awful Sales Tactics – The Future-Sales Prevention Team Or The Curse of the Hunter-Farmer Model Are your sales teams traditional, better or truly great? Contemplate the following (ugly) scenario: A customer calls his sales person to ask for help implementing software he purchased recently...

When the Best Solution Is NOT Your Offering

Have you ever found, when doing Discovery with a prospect, that the problem they face may not be best addressed by your offering – that another organization’s product would be better choice for them?  Do you go ahead and propose your offering anyway or...

Stunningly Awful Demo Communication – Unencrispening the Demo

The higher the customer’s job title, typically, the stronger is their desire for vendors to be crisp, focused and precise in their communications.  “Get to the point!” is what many senior managers are thinking, even if they don’t say it out loud.  Instead, their...

Difficulties in Demonstrating Toolkit and Toolbox Software

Many organizations don’t describe their offerings as complete applications, but rather as toolkits or toolboxes – and very often struggle to find effective ways to demonstrate them and communicate value.  Toolkit offerings enable enormous flexibility, but may demand an ability to visualize what end...

If Everyone Says Their RFP Win Rates Are Really Bad Then…

It suddenly struck me, if everyone says that their RFP win rates are really bad, then … who’s winning all those RFPs?  Hmmmm…  In addition to losing to competitors, is it possible that a large percent of RFPs end up as “No Decision”?  I...

Let’s Talk About Value – Uncovering the Delta

To paraphrase Mark Twain’s comment about the weather, everyone talks about value, but very few people actually do something about it.  Clearly value is important:  Insufficient perception of value is one of the three main reasons that sales opportunities end up as a “No...

ZoomIt – Annotations When Using Lync (and other tools) for Remote Demos

While I generally recommend WebEx and GoToMeeting for Remote Demos, largely due to their imbedded annotations capabilities, there is now a viable option for Lync and other packages that lack annotation capabilities (the ability to draw over the live application that is being demonstrated): ...

Frightening Statistics on Doing Discovery

I’ve done some informal interviews with heads of sales and presales recently and uncovered the following, rather consistent statements: - Heads of sales and presales tell me that about 10% of their teams actually do Discovery very well. - About 70% of their teams...

Presales Anxiety – Not Knowing All of the Answers…

Many presales people share concerns about being sufficiently deep with respect to product knowledge (and industry knowledge, and customer knowledge, and competitor knowledge, and 3rd party knowledge, and systems knowledge, and VM’s and laptops and tablets and smart-phones and on and on…). A...

Land and Expand Great Demo! Tactics

Here are a number of Great Demo! tactics that folks have reported have been working particularly well for teams doing “Land and Expand”: - Transition Vision and tracking through Value Realization: Customers will only expand their licenses...

Implementing Methodology Training – How to Move the 40%

In most organizations, participants of any methodology or skills training tend to cluster into three groups: - Group A: Those who “Get It” – they understand the new concepts and are eager, comfortable and confident...

Skills Training and Managers – The Good, the Bad, and the Truly Ugly

See if this sounds familiar: a manager organizes skills training for his/her team and, on the day of the training, the manager kicks things off and then disappears. Assuming that the manager has not had this particular skills training, what’s wrong with...

Transition Vision and Value Realization

Have you ever made a major software purchase? What happened the moment you issued that purchase order – and when was that pressure finally released? Typical sales people pursue the process through getting the order. Good sales teams follow it through the implementation and the...

New Posts