Category Archives: Discovery

Why Your Salespeople aren’t Making Discovery Calls (and What to Do About it!)


Picture this.   As a salesperson, you’ve been asked to give a presentation or demo to a qualified prospect. No easy feat in today’s competitive marketplace!  After high-fiving the rest of the team, what’s your plan? Start cutting and pasting from previous presentations. Review your prospect’s website and get the needed information. Plan discovery calls with key people within your prospect’s organization. If you do anything other than number three, you may very well be wasting your time. There’s a saying that applies to presentations in this regard: Garbage in – Garbage out Your presentation is only as good as the quality of the information you have, therefore discovery plays a critical role in your ultimate success. While much information about a company can be found on-line, the best, most insightful and valuable source of information comes directly from the mouths of key people within your prospect’s organization. This information Read More

7 Insights that will Improve Your Presentation Close Rate


This may sound funny coming from a presentation trainer, but the most effective way to improve your presentation close rate doesn’t happen during your presentation. It takes place before your preparation.  No deck, prop or story can replace the need for a thorough understanding of your customer.  That’s why discovery is so important.  Without vital insights into your prospect’s business, interests and challenges, your presentation is at risk for slowing down the sales cycle, or grinding it to a halt. How does your close rate compare to others in your industry? What are the easiest / most difficult industries for sales people?   HubSpot just released a new study that shows the average sales close rates for 28 industry and it’s all based on proprietary data. Check it out! You can dramatically improve your presentation close rate by arming  yourself with the following insights well before you deliver your presentation or Read More

The last time I failed to do discovery (Or how I ended up with Jell-O on my face)


Discovery for a presentation

I confess:  I haven’t always done discovery before a sales presentation.  Even when I was working at The National Enquirer many years ago where their tag line was “Enquiring minds want to know!” Like many salespeople, I was often running fast trying to make quota. And on those occasions where a prospect seemed like a natural fit, or the situation was similar to something I’d encountered previously, I would take some shortcuts (read: make assumptions). Jell-O changed all of that. I was selling advertising for The National Enquirer and although it had one of the largest print audiences in the country at that time, people – especially advertisers — had very strong opinions about the publication.  But love it or hate it, we had a core group of advertisers who used us as a primary vehicle for efficiently reaching a very specific audience: mothers with average or below household incomes. The Read More

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