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Rooted in Reality | The Itch to Pitch | Heads up vs. Heads Down

🌳 Rooting Your Compete Program in Reality 🌳


Salesforce VP of Competitive Intelligence Dan Hamilton has lived in the world of compete for more than a decade. 

When we asked him to share the most common trait among all successful compete programs, his answer was:

They are rooted in reality.

For most, that reality is found on the ground alongside your sales reps. 

Here are three reasons why partnering with them is key to success.

💵 Prove the ROI of your compete program

  • Benchmark the deals you supported versus those you didn’t to measure the impact you’ve had on win rates, close rates, and revenue. 

🏆 Unlock the nuances that help you better differentiate 

  • Differentiation is incredibly nuanced, and you’ll never learn the nuance unless you’re partnering with your sales team

✅ Boost your credibility with customer anecdotes

  • Your observations from the reality on the ground — especially with prospects and customers — help strengthen your overall narrative and validate your POV. 

Check out the full session with Dan and Klue’s Jason Oakley to dive into these three takeaways and much more. 

🙅‍♀️ Resist the Itch to Pitch 🙅‍♀️

competitive coaching

As Dan Hamilton said in his Winner’s Circle session, proper differentiation is incredibly nuanced. 

And since no one would advise getting into a feature-function stand-off, it’s important for your sales reps to know the right tactics to effectively differentiate at all points in the sales cycle.

So we brought together three of my most-excellent colleagues, Jody Geiger, Leigh Quinlan, and Erin Neal to share how they competitively differentiate

🙋‍♀️ Ask for consent

  • Ask your prospect if you can directly call out some of the competitive differentiators between you and your competitor in a demo, sales call etc. 
  • Let them give you the green light to compare and contrast first; if they say no, just focus on the strengths of your product 

🤷‍♀️ Don’t pretend like other competitors don’t exist 

  • If a prospect mentions your competitor, address their statement directly
  • If it’s something the competitor does better, acknowledge it; if it’s a lie, correct the record. 

🙅‍♀️ Resist the itch to pitch 

  • Guide your prospect toward ranking their main problems before you start pitching
  • If you pitch before you even know how your product can help, you risk losing credibility right off the hop. 

I’m a little biased, but this was my favourite session of the day. These three sellers are so damn good at their job — it’s a pleasure getting to work with them. 

👬 Coffee & Compete Community Corner 👭

Sometimes a LinkedIn post hits you in all the right places. 
No matter your discipline, finding the balance between strategizing and actually doing the work is no easy task.  
Finding the right rhythm is perhaps a better way to think about it. 
It won’t ever feel completely balanced at any given point in time. 
But if you slalom back and forth between the two, you might just find the right beat. 

Thanks for reading this week’s edition of Coffee & Compete. As always, please reach out to me and the rest of the team with your thoughts and feedback. 

And If you know someone who isn’t already subscribed to Coffee & Compete, be a good friend and tell them about us.

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