The best Best Friends Exercise for SaaS Presentations answers the age old question, would you buy a SaaS Product from just anyone, or would you buy it from a good friend, and why? People buy from people they like, but what if you are meeting for the first time, and you need to be best friends with the entire audience?
Sounds impossible, but we have 4 questions derived from the Fast Friends Procedure, that get you to Best Work-Friend status in no time. The procedure operates identically to standard discovery questions, but the answers they elicit engage an audience by making everyone vulnerable and promoting authenticity.
Self Determination, Vulnerability, and Authenticity in Theory and Sales
According to the Self-Determination Theory (SDT), humans have a fundamental need to connect with other humans (Deci & Ryan, 2008). This is the backbone of why we try to be friends with our clients, among everything else. How do we connect with people? We find things in common, but there is something more, we need to have shared experience in past or experience a moment in the present.
In sales and presentations, it is very common to recall things from a persons past or demographics to try to make a connection with them. This lacks authenticity and vulnerability, which makes it also feel disingenuous. But how to create an authentic and vulnerable experience when you just met a team or an audience? Make your meeting a vulnerable space for real connection by asking great questions and really engaging.
Sales, Vulnerability, and Authenticity
Vulnerability is the key to authentic connection because it is the courage to be open to another human (Brown, 2013). Think about every time you ask a question, is this question a gateway to reciprocity? If you are using these types of questions, you are not going to create an authentic experience. You both do not really care about the weather and neither will remember one another after the exchange was made. This is where authenticity comes in.
According to Brene Brown, “we are drawn to people who are real and down-to-earth… We love authenticity, and we know that life is messy and imperfect.” We are most comfortable around authentic people who are vulnerable with us. In sales, this must be initiated by the demoer or presenter, because by doing this, we are giving permission to the audience to be real and down to earth with us.
The best Best Friends Exercise for SaaS Presentations
Are you ready to learn the demo and presentation questions that send you into the friend zone? First, ask permission. In order to get permission to be authentic and down to earth, try Demo Solutions openers. Then we implement our version of the Fast Friends procedure questions, from Social psychologists Arthur and Elaine Aron, to facilitate the formation of connection and closeness in the audience.
The Fast Friends procedure mirrors the gradual process of becoming friends in warp speed. Questions are designed to encourage people to be open with one another at the same time and at a similar pace, reducing the likelihood that the sharing will feel one-sided. Below are our interpretation for sales audiences, 4 questions that increase connectivity and that fast friends feeling.
- What would constitute a “perfect” work day for you?
- Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say? Why?
- If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one professional quality or ability, what would it be?
- Your computer, containing everything file you own, catches fire. Sure you have the cloud, but if you could recover one application or file. What would it be? Why?
Depending on your presentation and product, we think you are already considering the application of these questions. It seems really easy to work these in, but cue an internal monologue of wait all the value and products to show, when will I show that???? This is the incredible part of these questions. They can save your demo if you get ahead of yourself and you feel like you are losing your audience.
Permission to be Sold
When you have connected with your audience on an authentic level and shown vulnerability, they will respond. Even if you have gone off rails and realized that you have been showing way too many features but not enough value, these can help you out. Lastly, when you deliver a presentation that shows value, vulnerability, and is totally authentic, you just have to ask for permission to close. It really is that simple.
If you would like to learn more about how we use psychology exercises in our sales processes and demo coaching, we would love to talk!