Relying on Instincts, Not Google is hard. Founder Ed Jaffe and I recently had children. One of the biggest tips for those welcoming a child into the world, is to rely on your instincts, and not google everything. From rashes to fussy eating, to sleeping, the reality is, we have all the tools we need to raise children, lots of people did it before google, and you need to trust your instincts. We would like to explore your instincts in audience communication in demoing too.
When to use Google
Google is great, so is Linked In, prior to your Demo. You should at the very least brief your sales team or yourself on the audience members, the relevant industry news, and the company news. This does not mean that you should repeat your findings if they are not relevant. So many presenters do a Google round up of stats and read what other presenters advise, then try to customize their presentation based on an approximation of Google and Linked In findings. The problem is that when you do this, you are not able to really meet your audience where they are at. This is where your instincts come into play.
Tapping Into your Instincts: Evolutionary Psychology
It is important to note that we are not referring to strictly evolutionary instincts, which are survival-based, we are discussing psychological instincts. These are learned behaviors that are favored for survival. What we are really talking about is Evolutionary Psychology, vs evolutionary biology.
Evolutionary Psychologists contend that certain universal behaviors evolved alongside biology. Ways to identify kin, identifying healthier mate, beauty, and parental investment. In the framework of Evolutionary Psychology, we have innate behaviors to care for our children. If you have children you will immediately notice this, and if you are primary caregivers you will as well. When a child is hungry, in trouble, or prior to crying, you can sense it. What if you could sense what your audience wanted to hear and delivered it during your demo and during your discovery?
The success of genes with psychological propensities such as reading others’ intentions, making friends, and gaining trust, are some of the most useful for presenters and anyone in a revenue organization. Here are some top tips for tapping into these instincts and where to avoid Google advice.
Top Tips for Tapping Into Instincts During SaaS Demo Presentations
We are sticking to some basics that helped early man, and can help you present.
We developed language as a way to communicate with each other and cooperate in the coordinated effort of surviving. Language became more and more complex with the advent of agriculture and with it came more advanced societies. For the SaaS Demo Presentations tip, stick to the most simple language everyone can understand. We have a video on this here. Why use a bunch of language that risks even one person not understanding when you can communicate the same idea simply?
Everyone in sales is well aware that the key to client retention, and the initial sale, is to make friends with them. Making friends is also an instinct. Having an ally or someone you can depend on to help with child rearing and carry some of the workload assists in survival therefore making friends is a trait favored by evolution. How we go about making friends is different and in a sales environment, making friends, in a genuine way is not assured.
Sales pros face a number of challenges when trying to make friends right out of the gate. You may exclude members of your audience, see our piece on this here, through trying to make friends with other members. Additionally, appealing to your audience with jokes, another way to make friends, may come off as insincere. So how do you make friends? As the ancients did, offer a service to your client. Instead of telling them all the reasons to like you, use jokes you think they will like, and insincere attempts at connection, offer them something they need.
Reading intentions is a trait favored by evolution, and it is impossible to use this instinct if you used google prior. 70% of communication is nonverbal (see our piece on this here) and in order to read the intentions of your audience and pitch to their needs, you need to read intentions. Demo Solutions offers programs and exercises to help your teams read audience posture and body language, but the very worst thing you can do is rely on Google for a few tips then think looking at someone’s arms crossed has lost your deal.
Prepare your Demo Setlist, your Demo Deck, and they deliver your demo while reading the audience and IN THE MOMENT finding their intention. Be dynamic in your delivery, make sure everyone is with you, and you can see moments where you lose someone, or a member is confused. Do not push ahead. Stop and address the concern before you lose more of the audience.
Gaining Trust is a survival trait and is favored genetically. Gaining Trust is also critical in a presentation, in discovery, and in client retention. How do you gain trust quickly? You can’t, and you shouldn’t use techniques or verbal mechanics that try to instill trust. Our programs in Sales Linguistics have information on what happens when you try to instill trust that is not earned. It usually backfires. Some ways presenters will try to gain trust are using technical words, using words like Honestly, and telling jokes that might appeal to a bias that the presenter has about the audience. Examples of these include memes that are age and culture-specific and telling stories that are all about your experience or being self-deprecating. So how do I get people to trust me?
There is no shortcut to trust. Once trust is lost, it is really difficult to regain, so the best tactic is to not use tactics to gain trust. Think of how a therapist is with new clients. They listen, pay attention, ask questions, do not make judgments, and offer practical solutions. That is your role. Once you have established trust with your client creating more intimacy with jokes and personal stories is appropriate. During the demo and discovery period, creating intimacy is not the same as gaining trust. If you find yourself feeling uncomfortable telling a story or joke, stop yourself. Chances are you are coming on too strong and skipping gaining trust.
Final Notes on Relying on Instincts, Evolutionary Psychology and SaaS Demo Presentations
While we are not vying for survival during SaaS Demo Presentations and during discovery, we hope that these lessons from Evolutionary Psychology helped underscore the importance of trust, friendship, language, and overall, being present during your Demo. Demo Solutions offers a number of tools to help you conquer these scenarios and deliver more effective demos that close deals.
PS Fun Fact
Don’t believe in Evolution and Psychological Evolution seems far fetched? Know anyone with a snake or spider phobia? It is the perfect example. Spiders and snakes are highly poisonous in many areas of the world. There is not a coincidence so many people are scared of them, it’s genetic!