What is the Theory of Mind and What does it have to do with your SaaS Demo Delivery?
What is Theory of Mind and What does it have to do with SaaS Demo Delivery? It turns out, quite a bit and many of our clients fail to consider it when preparing and delivering SaaS Demos. Do you find it difficult to connect with your audience and advance your deals with demos? We have seen countless deals grind to a halt at the demo, then slip further away with the POC, and we don’t want that to happen to you.
Using early childhood development framework for developing the Theory of Mind, we have some useful exercises to employ during your next SaaS demo to align with your audience, communicate your value, and close your deal.
Theory of Mind
Between ages 4-5 children start to develop theory of mind. It is the concept that people have wants and needs different from their own. Prior to this, starting at birth to age 3, children start developing in response to stimuli around them and other people. They mirror others, pretend to be others, understand cause and reaction, know they are different from others, but they do not understand that people want, think, and act differently than they do, to get other desired results. An example would be when you see a box with the words chocolate on it and open it to find pencils, then another person walks into the room you know they don’t know yet there arent chocolates in the box. Bummer.
Using Theory of Mind Facilitation in Your Demo
When you are about to deliver a SaaS demo, you need to act as if you are facilitating a child learning to develop theory of mind. For this exercise, we are using a framework developed by http://www.hanen.org/ for the purpose of helping children on the spectrum to develop empathy and theory of mind.
Get on their level
We say get on your audience’s level a lot. It is so easy to walk into your demo with your software and your demo script, deliver, what you think is an amazing demo of your tools, only to hear crickets or confusion at the end. Getting on your audience’s level means that you ask questions about their comprehension, you dive into problems they specifically are having, and that you provide value to them specifically.
How to get on the audience level? Tune into their body language, start to recognize the tells for when someone is not understanding, and ask more questions. We have more materials in our cognitive bias section that can also help you understand the mechanics of misunderstanding on the audience level. Hanen.org recommends physically being on the same level as a child, but for our purposes the best thing to do is become aware of the physical cues that signify that you are not understanding the same thing, and adjusting delivery to regain attention, and deliver what they need.
Use Stories to Illustrate Value
Recently, we delivered two webinars on storytelling with The Mom Project, one of our preferred HR vendors, and one of the most powerful ways to communicate value that relates to a client and communicates that you understand their needs is through storytelling. When you open a demo with a story about your observations in their office to contextualize why you are there or you recapture the audience attention with a story that communicates the value of your products, you bring together disparate factions in a room, and get everyone on the same page. When you have people on the same page, you are more likely to close your deal, because objections can be raised without fear and addressed in real time, not down the line.
Use Tuning In Language
Tuning In language puts the audiences objections or collective thoughts into play. An example from Hanen.org would be when a caretaker would say to a child, “Don’t Worry, I am right here”, or “You want a cookie, don’t you?”. This reinforces that you are understanding the thoughts of another person as different from your own. When you are in the room in front of an audience, addressing the potential objections held by different factions, such as legal, or accounting, try using some of the tune in language by raising the objection first and addressing the objection within your demo. If done correctly, you will get more people on your side and advance your deal.
Running a demo can take a turn for the boring and mundane very easily. You lose your audience and your deal if you are delivering a stale demo, with a worn out deck, and not engaging your audience. Role playing with members of your audience that you are most familiar with or that have jobs that would likely be using your SaaS software is a great way to demonstrate that you know what they need, you have listened to their requests during discovery, and that your software was ostensibly designed for their user. Rather than design a POC, which can take weeks, design your demo deck for role play, and close at the demo.
We hope you enjoyed some of our exercises using Theory of Mind for your SaaS Demo Delivery. Demo Solutions offers exercises, programs, and team building strategies to get your demo to close doors, not deals. We would love to chat!
For some quick links to products we referenced, look below!