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How Not To End Up On A Level Playing Field With The Competition!

Summary: After the listening, every good business and sales person can respond with business models and benefits. But if that's all you talk about during the sales process, you're on a level playing field with the competition. Why hide your light? To win, you have to go beyond everyday benefits to the specific advantages of your offering. You have to sell both benefits and features! And if you are going to really succeed with business model- and business case-based selling, you'll need detailed model inputs about how your technology makes a difference to their business!

Deep Dive:  Every C-Level executive and every experienced and successful sales rep know the same things. Whether gained in the school of hard knocks or in B-school, the principles of business success are widely understood. And because business knowledge and business skills are widely disseminated, it's difficult for any one organization to consistently outperform any other organization in their market. It's not impossible, but it is difficult. You could say that business competition in open societies occurs on a playing field that is at least somewhat level.

With these facts in mind, why would anyone ever reduce a technology sell to "business benefits"?  The fastest way to end up on a level playing field with your competition is to downplay your unique technical advantages -- in favour of generic business benefits such as "faster time to market" and "lowest total cost of ownership" and "better information".

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