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Sales Solutions
Back It Up! vol 6, issue #5
May, 2009

No, I have not suddenly become a techie geek writing an article about good data management practices. I am writing about what prospects routinely ask you after you've made a claim about what your product or service can do.  And with today's overly-cautious buyer, it's not enough to claim you have the best product or service.  You have to back up that claim.
Most people are either skeptical by nature or they've been conditioned to be skeptical.  This is particularly true, as we all know, when it comes to prospects.  And especially true when it comes to ice cold prospects.  So whenever we make a claim that buying our product or service will help them achieve something they want, they want us to "back it up."  Just as we would want someone who was trying to sell us something to do.
What, then, are some ways we can back up what we claim?  One way is with facts.  Hard facts are hard to refute.  Verifiable numbers are hard to argue with.  If 92% of customers who bought your product are glad they did, and that number can be corroborated, there's a pretty good chance your prospect will be glad too.
Another way is with references.  Many people will only "buy into" what you're claiming if someone they know and/or respect has "bought into" it too.   Always have a supply of references handy for your prospects to contact (permission by the prospect having already been secured, of course).
Yet another way to back up what you're claiming is with case studies.  Many people are enthralled by stories.  A well-written, or told, case study that shows how someone else benefited from using your product or service can go a long way towards allaying a prospect's concerns.
How do you know which one to use?  It's simple.  Ask!   People are different, and what they'll accept as proof will likewise differ.  So rather than guess, simply ask.



Take some time to assemble your "evidence" - your proofs.  Then pack them in your briefcase or laptop bag, and carry them with you when you go on calls.  Then, when you make a claim about your offering and are asked to back it up, respond with, "I'd be happy to.  So I make sure I do so to your satisfaction, can you tell me what you'd need me to provide in order to do so?"  Then whip out the appropriate proof.  Followed shortly thereafter by your contract!

Good Selling!

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