“Houston, we have a problem.”
I’ve heard this many times and it still gets a little snicker. It’s not even a standard response for astronauts. It’s just a famous movie phrase that didn’t so much deviate from what happened during the original Apollo 13 mission.
Speaking of which though, why is it that this line is so memorable but not the many times you’ve pointed out software problems during your lead generation campaign?
It’s a standard routine to ask about a prospect’s current satisfaction with their ERP software. That means occasionally spotting holes or identifying technical problems. There are not that many alternatives in beating the competition that way.
So suppose that’s how you usually get in touch with prospects and qualify them for sales appointments. You speak with one and ask them a few questions. Some of them may have even initiated the contact instead of you and have started giving you their complaints.
What’s the standard, tech response to all that? Do you tell them that there’s an issue with Database A or they need recode Server B? Do you suggest they replace Warehouse C with your new cloud-based X?
What if I told you that sort of response could actually be your problem?
You’ve probably read a hundred times about how people just hate tech jargon. Here’s one more situation where it’s inappropriate: saying a prospect has a problem.
It’s not that hard! You know there’s a problem! Do you have to explain it? Not always. In fact, you can just save your breath. As with any issue with tech jargon, your prospects would rather know they have on in the first place rather than why they have it. Take a step back and think:
- Who’s providing the solution? – You. Why would you market your own ERP tools if you strongly believe they’re a better solution than what a prospect currently has? If a prospect is desperate enough for a better solution, don’t waste time explaining their problems. Just say something’s wrong and you’re there already holding the answer.
- Who has the knowledge for the solution? – Again, it’s you. You’re selling something that can fix the problem. Why bother with the details? Really. Why? There’s not much room for information overload in the lead generation process. A prospect has all the symptoms. Your salespeople have all the answers. Send the prospect over already!
- Who is responsible for the solution? – Providing comes with the responsibility that things really do go well. If there are bumps on the road, don’t waste your new customer’s time by explaining what that is. You either assure them all is well or even make the extra effort that these bumps don’t unsettle their trust in your solution.
We all know tech jargon tends to be a major turn off. Don’t make it worse when it starts keeping a prospect from seeing a solution. Spare them the details, tell them something is in fact wrong, and you’re there to fix it.