“I have an amazing product and I want to sell it to you!” If you ever want someone to hang-up on you immediately, just say that phrase and you’ll soon become best friends with the dial tone. Your sales team needs to understand that no one likes being sold to. In fact, it’s estimated that people are exposed to roughly 5,000 different advertisements per day, and thanks to this over-exposure of ads people will regularly tune out anything that begins to sound like a “sell” to them.
Your sales team has probably gotten comfortable telling their prospects that the product they’re selling is amazing, but probably haven’t considered using a story to back up their claims. A story will not only create a better emotional connection with your prospects, it will also leave a lasting impression with them and remind them not only of you, but of your product or service as well. Here are 3 advantages about story telling that I’ve learned over the years.
Stories Simplify Complicated Ideas – During a TED talk about storytelling, Andrew Stanton from Pixar delivered a great quote that really stuck with me: “Don’t give them 4, give them 2 + 2”. People don’t want to hear the science of how your product will make their business run more efficiently, they simply want to know the results. Don’t get bogged down by the details of your strategy, just tell them a story that delivered concrete results, and explain that you’ll do the same for them.
Stories Leave An Impression –Most business owners and decision makers receive a large number of calls from salespeople every day, so having a memorable story in your arsenal can make a large difference between a meeting and a rejection. A decision maker will always remember an emotional story that meant something to them instead of a well-formulated sales pitch.
Stories Are Sharable – The best thing about a memorable story is that if you deliver it effectively, the listener will share that story with their peers. There’s nothing better than having an advocate of your product or service tell other people about it. Even if they don’t see any value in what you’re selling, they won’t mind sharing a story that stuck out in their mind.
Once your sales team is able to share stories with their prospects, they’ll have a creative way to be in their front of mind. If your team uses the age old “but I don’t have any stories” excuse, sit down with them and talk through some positive experiences they’ve had with past clients, and see if there are stories that they can adapt from that.
Does your team regularly use stories? What has their success been like? I would love to hear your successes and discuss more about this topic in the comments section.