Winning Differentiators

If your company sells enterprise technology solutions, if pays to think of video in the context of the buying process. For surprising insights into buying processes — teams, activities, decision-making, and what it takes to come up with winning differentiators,  — I’ve found Gartner analyst Hank Barnes to be a reliable source over the past decade, 

Winning differentiators and high-quality deals

Consider, for example, the high-quality deal, where “both the customer and the vendor should be (at least relatively) happy.” The Gartner team has been researching these deals for quite a while; here’s a graphic from a recent blog post by Hank Barnes that summarizes key findings:

Demonstrating Winning Differentiators

What’s notable here is that there are only two bullet points, both of which begin with the word demonstrated. Demonstration is one thing every tech company uses video screens for. Shouldn’t every technology solution demo emphasize situational awareness and industry knowledge?

How would you do that?

  • Choose use cases familiar to your ideal customer
  • Draw clear comparisons to alternative approaches
  • Clarify the customer benefit of every feature you demonstrate
Reuse and Repurpose

Sharing excerpts and use cases from targeted demos is an opportunity for sales to communicate the kind of situational awareness and industry knowledge customers are looking for.

Because it’s video, this sales communication is more likely to be shared internally within the customer organization than ordinary email. It’s an efficient and unobtrusive way to get buying team members on the same page as they build their business case.

It’s also a pretty simple task for a video producer. Step-by-step demos of a software solution tend to look pretty much the same from one industry and use case to the next. It may even be possible to use the same screencast sequences with different customers and industries. Personalizing the demo can be done with narration and introductory graphics. If it’s directly relevant to the viewer, it’s not going to require a lot of pizzazz.

Add Character

You can turn a demo into a quasi-testimonial with an animated character recounting the use case as a stand-in for subject matter experts. Simple facial expression animation is relatively inexpensive and easily adaptable to different stories.

Achieve Differentiation with Digital Selling

Differentiation is always hard. In today’s environment where sales interactions on video screens is growing, opportunities to use video to demonstrate industry knowledge and understanding of your customer’s situation are growing too. You’ll probably be able to identify lots of them in the online demos you’re already doing.