You Need a Proposal?

I was just speaking with Matthew Scott—a fellow Duct Tape Marketing Coach from the Portland, OR area.

We were talking about ‘proposals’. And whether you need them or not.

Matthew’s take is you don’t. You don’t need to make proposals.

Now before you get all crazy on that, consider the source.

Matthew is quite accomplished:

  • Five years ago he was a Co-Founder & Vice President, Sales & Marketing of a San Diego biotech company.
  • In the span of 3 months he hired over 125 sales consultants globally.

In the medical device world dealing with hospitals and purchasing committees, the default response was “send us a proposal.”

He said it went something like this…”My sales consultants would think they had a good prospect when they heard those words, go home and often times design a proposal format to submit.

Hours were spent and pretty formatted documents submitted. They would wait for response or would sometimes grow restless and unknowingly begin to be perceived as a “sales stalker.”

Often times without knowing it, they would soon allow this to get the life sucked out of them emotionally or even give them a false sense of security that they were close to making a sale because they submitted a proposal.”

Matthew observed this during his ride-alongs and monthly coaching sessions. So he made the decision to not allow his sales consultants to submit any more written proposals.

“I then established a training program on delivering a verbal not a written proposal. My sales team really struggled with this decision. But we trained as a team and each sales consultant role-played and developed the necessary attitudinal strengths to help them deal with possible hospital responses.”

Matthew’s Results:

  1. Sales grew by 43% in a three month time period.
  2. Sales Consultants did not miss sitting in front of computer knocking out a presentation.
  3. Increased revenues were directly attributed to fact that they sold at list price vs. getting caught in a bidding war by submitting a proposal and then having customer shop their proposal around for a better deal.
  4. Sales Consultants confidence grew by being part of a paradigm shift in their market by not cranking out endless proposals and not making any money by waiting for “we will review and get back to you.”
  5. Since they sold a great product that made a unique difference in patients lives-the simple approach of eliminating a written proposal eliminated them being lumped into the blurry difference between their features and benefits and their competition’s feature and benefits.

I think of how I’ve recently closed a number of sales without a ‘written proposal’. It CAN BE DONE!

You want to know how? Call me… 860-798-6964. I’ll let you in on the ‘dirty little secret’ that Matthew and I have learned.

Until next time…

All the best!

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