Why Visuals Make Great ‘Discovery’ Tools

Nearly every sales rep uses visuals in formal presentations, usually in PowerPoint. But are you using them effectively in discovery, too? In a complex, business-to-business, consultative-selling environment, visuals can be powerful tools for advancing a sale for several reasons. They can:

Drive your point home clearly and succinctly.

Make terrific leave-behinds (if printed) that prospects can review and consider after you leave.

Help your prospect, as your internal advocate, persuade others in the organization that your products and sevices are valuable.

You probably already have some visuals in the form of brochures or sell sheets. But you can create your own to make specific points. They don’t have to be of commercial quality–in fact, informal visuals can be even more effective.

We don’t recommend “back of the napkin” visuals, necessarily. They’re too flimsy and might well end up in the wastebasket because that’s where napkins usually end up. But a blank piece of paper on which you sketch a diagram or flow chart on the spot shows  your adaptability and expertise differently than prepared pieces.

You can plan the impromptu use of visuals, too. Decide on one or two points that can have strong visual impact and practice sketching a diagram or other type of illustration–even a list. Then be ready to pull out a blank sheet of paper when the opportunity presents itself. Or set up the opportunity by asking the right questions at the right time. Then draw your diagram or write out your list.

Even planned off-the-cuff visuals still deliver value to your prospect by making your points succinctly and offering a different perspective from which the prospect can see the problems your company can solve.

Want to learn more? Just call me at 847-446-0008. We can help you see a variety of ways to improve your sales results and help you to put them to work, too.

Scott Pemberton is a senior consultant at Productive Strategies, Inc., a marketing and management consulting firm specializing in consultative sales training and customized sales process development, lead generation and appointment setting, and marketing and marketing communications.  Scott can be reached at 847-446-0008 Extension 3 and at spemberton@productivestrategies.com.


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