As more and more companies implement new sales technology solutions into their sales organization, it is evident that there is more science in selling than ever before. With every step forward that we take with new technology, we need to examine our progress in the art of selling.
You may be familiar with an episode of Mad Men where Don Draper makes a smooth pitch for the Kodak Carousel. It takes a little over three minutes to watch. It’s one of the best sales pitches I’ve seen on TV. Click here to access the three minute video clip.
In case you can’t access the video from your office computer, here is the TV script that Don Draper delivered with a great deal of finesse:
“Technology is a glittering lure. But there is the rare occasion where the public can be engaged on a level beyond flash…if they have a sentimental bond with the product. My first job, I was in-house at a fur company, and this old pro copywriter, Greek, named Teddy…and Teddy told me that the most important idea in advertising is “new”…it creates an itch. You seem to put your product in there as kind of a Calamine lotion. We also talked about a deeper bond with the product – nostalgia – it’s delicate, but potent. (Turns on Kodak carousel projector and clicks through slides that show family scenes).
Teddy told me that in Greek, nostalgia literally means the pain from an old wound. It’s a twinge in your heart far more powerful than memory alone. This device isn’t a spaceship, it’s a time machine…it goes backwards; forwards…it takes us to a place where we ache to go again. It’s not called the wheel, it’s called the carousel. It travels the way a child travels, round and round and back home again, to a place where we know we’re loved.”
There are a few surprising facts about this scene. To read the script, it will take you less than a minute. To play the scene, Draper added so many dramatic pauses, that he tripled the delivery time. A lower rate of speech adds to the suspense and it enhances the impact of the message. Of course there are more discoveries that will hit you after you’ve watched the scene several times.
I suggest you play this video during your next sales meeting and ask your salespeople a few questions afterwards:
What makes this sales presentation so compelling?
To what degree is a selling an art? To what degree is selling a science?
(Ask your salespeople to come up with two numbers that add up to 100%).
How can we inject more emotional weight into our presentation?
How can we use more imagery in our sales message?
How can we improve our delivery?
What can we do to create a sentimental bond with our product or service?
What can we do to advance both: the art and science of selling?
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