I was watching television on Friday evening and found myself crying at the end of The Ghost Whisperer. Are you kidding me? Me? But then I thought about it and realized that this isn’t exactly unheard of. When we train management teams on how to effectively recruit and select winning salespeople we use a clip from Field of Dreams and I get choked up every time. And I’ve seen that clip dozens of times! I suppose that I don’t usually watch the shows that would choke me up as opposed to it not being possible for me to get choked up.
So I’m sitting there crying like a baby and apparently, even then, my mind won’t let me be because it makes another connection to sales excellence. Perhaps, in the way that Google has learned to crawl my Blog multiple times per day in search of my latest post, my mind has learned to find the sales connection in nearly everything I experience.
At that moment it occurred to me that when we cry from simply watching someone else pretend, they have really succeeded at selling us on:
- the drama – they have us hooked.
- the reality – it seems real even though it isn’t.
- the emotion – if they get tears you have become emotional.
- the connection – the only way they get the emotion from you is if you somehow connect their event to a past or potential future event in your life.
So if a combination of efforts from writers, directors and actors in a theatrical production can be sold to so many, with such effectiveness, why can’t we do the same thing?
I believe we can be every bit as effective as the entertainers. If you begin to associate your presentation with a screenplay rather than as a presentation of features and benefits you would recognize that your prospects think that:
- Your presentations are boring.
- Your presentations are too long.
- You talk about stuff that they don’t care about.
- They aren’t getting hooked.
- There isn’t any drama to it.
- You are boring.
- You don’t get them emotionally involved.
- You don’t get them to make the connections.
- There is less reality to your presentation than the theatrical productions you react to.
- You’ve presented the information so many times to so many people that even you are bored with it!
For example, pretend that today’s Baseline Selling Tip is the script for a presentation. Go back to the beginning, reread this article and identify where:
- the actual presentation begins
- I get you hooked
- I cause you to make connections
- the drama takes place
- where you would get emotional – you don’t have to cry; you simply reacted by agreeing, disagreeing, becoming upset, angry or excited.
If you have a copy of Baseline Selling, review the chapter on Running Home, especially the section on compelling presentations. If you don’t have a copy of the book, ask somebody to buy you one for the holiday….or get one for yourself!
This week, make some changes to the way you present and let me know what is different in the way your prospects react.
For those of you who follow the Baseline Selling process, this is not permission to present any earlier than between 3rd base and home, it’s simply an opportunity for you to rework how you present between 3rd base and home.