A customer contacts a vendor to schedule a demo saying, “We’d like to see a demo of your offering right away – we have an active project and want to make a decision very soon…”
The salesperson schedules a demo that same week, announcing to his presales colleague, “They are ready to make a decision – let’s plan to give them the overview demo and do some discovery on-the-fly…”
Sadly, this vendor is may already be “Column Fodder”…!
So what are other, more viable options? There are (at least) three:
One: Pull back; insist on a substantive Discovery conversation. “We’d love to give you a demo and we will, as soon as we can determine what to show you. Let’s mutually invest 30 minutes on a phone call so that we can focus the demo on what is most important to you. We don’t want to waste your time or ours…”
Two: Apply the Menu Approach – a delightful self-rescue technique. You can find an article on the Menu Approach here.
Three: Use a Vision Generation Demo – an even more delightful self-rescue technique that both satisfies the customer’s desire to see a demo and moves the conversation gently (but firmly) into a real Discovery conversation. An article on Vision Generation demos can be found here.
These options have frequently proven to turn the process to your advantage, even when you may have started as “Column Fodder”…!