Let’s cut to the chase – you want the sale. You want that signature on the dotted line and you want it done yesterday. With sales cycles that are too long, and monthly targets not being met as-is, we understand why it’s difficult to envision the real value that a simple story can have on your sale metrics.
If you’re not sold on the idea of your sales team spilling the beans about their personal life, sharing their favourite campfire stories on a sales call or reflecting on childhood memories – that’s great, because neither are we. Those stories may be nice, but who buys nice? We’re focusing on the actual value of effective sales storytelling and how the right narrative will help your business overcome the constant hurdles your sales team has been facing.
What is Sales Storytelling?
Sales storytelling is a powerful strategy used by most salespeople, but very few do it right. When it comes to effective storytelling, there’s no BS about it. It’s not about putting on a show and entertaining the client, but rather telling a story that’s filled with substance and meaning, which then creates an emotional link between your facts and their feelings. It portrays the real-life value of a product or service to the client without wasting time babbling about its features, benefits or the company.
Your team wants to strike gold, and a well-crafted and intentional narrative, that taps into the customer’s mindset, pain points and desires equips your team with the necessary tools to do just that. It focuses on shortening the sales cycle through the purposeful communication that sharpens the unique selling proposition and puts the client at the heart of the story, which is exactly where you want them to be.
Why is Storytelling Important in Sales?
Speaking of the heart of the story, let’s get to the point. Why does storytelling matter in sales and how does it influence your KPIs? Stories drive emotion. Emotion drives sales. Period. However, having to tailor each pitch and sales message to fit the needs of each prospect is time-consuming and doesn’t create any opportunity for consistency or continuity between the sales team and the rest of your marketing efforts. Cue sales storytelling.
It rethinks the hero
For many years in sales, it was thought apt that the sales team should be the hero of the story. Set the scene: Your client had a problem, you had the solution, ergo – you’re the hero, please sign here. Worthwhile and fruitful sales storytelling flips the script and realises that in your client’s story, your sales team isn’t the hero, they’re not even the main characters, your client is. This core restructuring explores sales psychology methods that Missing Link has used over two decades to your advantage.
It sharpens your unique value proposition
Your value proposition is your magic formula. Every second business believes it’s unique, but is what you’re selling truly, madly, deeply distinct from your competitors? That’s the real question at the back of every client’s mind. Sales storytelling refines your USP and integrates it into the way your team acts, speaks, listens and sells. You’ll stand out from competitors not because you say, but because you are.
Deliver the core message every time
Solutions can become extremely refined and complex. So even the slickest pitch won’t do the trick if the client doesn’t understand the real value of what’s being talked about. Stories thread meaning into value propositions, making them stand out, pack a punch and gain some extra ‘oomph’ – which is never a bad thing. It enables your sales team to skip the fluff and deliver the core message in a memorable way. What would you consider the critical takeaway to be for each prospective client? It may be communicated in each pitch, but is it valued by the client or is it just another stat? Through sales storytelling, your key takeaway is delivered in a way that’s easy to digest, retain, internalize and put into action.
Attract better customers with bigger budgets
Sales storytelling equips your sales team with the needed tools to sell with conviction and confidence. It creates a narrative that gives results, empowers and unites a sales team. Being aligned as a team and understanding the value of being a strategic storyteller creates an opportunity to attract bigger clients who are drawn to your sales team’s ability to connect to the audience, their exceptional presentation skills, and your team’s understanding and ability to communicate the USP clearly.
No salesperson gets 100% of their deals a 100% of the time. Believing that you can completely bypass any objections is wishful thinking. But that doesn’t mean you can’t decrease your small-margin failure. One of Apple’s best-kept secrets shared in their Genius training manual reveals the “Feel, Felt, Found” method of storytelling and its power to overcome sales objections through storytelling. It uses the power of storytelling to acknowledge the problem, build empathy with the prospect and communicate a simple, yet significant anecdote that is relevant to the initial objection. This encourages the client to re-think, re-consider and react.
There’s a Missing Link
Great, we’re getting somewhere. Storytelling matters, yes – but how does one go about building a winning story for your sales team? Very rarely does a team have the time to go back to the drawing board and research their audience, brainstorm their unique value proposition and create an effective sales story that hits the mark on the first try. So how can you turn this abstract idea into an effective blueprint that can be used by the entire team? That’s where we come in. Go from storytelling to storyselling here.