The Sales Hacker Podcast
The Sales Hacker Podcast

Episode · 3 years ago

38: Why You Should Focus on Customers Unstated Needs w/ Munya Hoto, Digital Marketing Director, Foundry

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

This week on the Sales Hacker podcast, we talk to Munya Hoto, Digital Marketing Director at Foundry and a Founding Member of the London Revenue Collective. Munya is an "accidental" marketer who comes to marketing from an economics background and who has helped develop unique insights into how to expand the market opportunity for growing companies.

One, two, one, three, three. Fo Hey everybody, it's Sam Jacobs. Welcome to the sales hacker podcast. I am your host. I am also the founder of the revenue collective and we are now in New York, London, Boston, Denver, Toronto and Amsterdam, thanks Andre Brussel, and we're going to be over the course of two thousand and nineteen expanding to most of the major cities in the world, I would expect. So that's exciting. And then I'm also the chief Revenue Officer of a company that's growing by a massive percentage every year, focus on the machine learning and behavioral people in Alytic Space, and that's called behave oks. So today on the show we're super excited. We've got one of the founding members the London revenue collective, a guy named Munyaratzijoto from Zimbabwe. A short name for him is Munya. So Munya Hote is a digital marketer and Munya has an economics degree in background and brings a lot of really interesting insights about how to think about selling to people and why a lot of what we're doing is just you know, you'll hear it all the time when you sort of listen to sophisticated sales leaders, but speeds and feeds selling features and selling core product functionality just doesn't work. It's a commodity. I mean it works. You're going to be a price dweller, you're going to be competing on price because you're not going to create enough value. So Muna teaches us in this episode how to move beyond what people tell you their problems are and teach them about what their problems actually are. And a lot of this has to do with some of the concepts that we heard from last week, from Brent Adamson around the Challenger Sale, when you came up with this stuff sort of on his own and actually didn't even hasn't yet sort of been a student of Challenger methodology, but it's a lot of the same ideas. If you just going off of what the prospect says, you're probably going to do it wrong. So he'll tell us all about that. Now before we get started, as always, we want to thank our sponsors. The first is air call. Air Call as a phone system designed for the modern sales team. Of course, they seamlessly and magically integrate with your crm. They eliminate data entry for your Reps. they provide you with greater visibility into your team's performance. They've been an outstanding supporter of the Sales Hacker podcast, so we really are appreciative of the work. They're originally a French company, growing massively in the US thanks to some of the work that Jeff Freakers is doing. And when it's time to scale with air call you can add new lines and minutes. It doesn't take very much at all. You can use in call coaching to reduce ramp time. So visit are called DOT IO. Forward sales hacker to see why. A bunch of amazing companies like Uber done and Brad Street, pipe drive and many others use them to power their most critical sales conversations. Our second sponsor is outreach, the leading sales engagement platform. Outreach triples the productivity of sales teams and empowers them and you to drive predictable and measurable Revenue Growth. Outreach has been growing by leaps and bounds. Outreach acquired sales hacker the company earlier in two thousand and eighteen, but really the product and the category is exploding. Sales enablement, sales development, all of it is just very, very powerful outreach does that by helping you prioritize the right activities, scaling customer engagement. It's an enterprise ready platform, so it can scale for the biggest companies, but it can also be for, you know, for a very small company. They've got intelligent automation, they've got amazing analytics and DASHBOARDS, they've got a great team, they've got a product driven founder and Manny Medina, and of course they are just an incredible company. So go over to outreach, dot io forward sales hacker to see how thousands of customers, some of them include glass door, cloud, Dara Pandora Zillo, rely on outreach to deliver higher revenue for sales rep that's outreach, dot io forward slash sales hacker. Finally, let's thank a bunch of you amazing fans and and I want to talk to you about what's possible. So one of the people I want to mention is or in Freedman. Or in reached out to me and has a lot of really interesting insights on podcast formats, and so I said, what do you think we should do different and he said how about like a Joe Rogan style long form interview? And I think that that's really, really interesting and so trying to we're going to try and pick a few, one or two people. Maybe do it on a weekend or something. But have you know something that's a little bit longer than thirty or thirty five or forty minutes? So thanks or in for the feedback. Also want to thank Chase Carter. Chase works at Pendo and chase got, you know, his cro bill to be a guest on the podcast. So that's coming up. So if you've got a sales leader or you got somebody that you think is super interesting that you think should be a guest, send them our way. But Chase helped us do that. Harrison Johnson and Justin Ingram are up at starburst data and Boston and they heard about the Boston revenue collective through the podcast and they also listen to the podcast. So again, all kinds of different ways of a reaching out and contributing, I fear, in a city that you think needs a revenue collective, or you've got a boss or a leader or a mentor that you think should be a guest, or you just have suggestions because you think I'm an idiot. Many people think I'm an idiot and I'm not offended anymore at this point. I'm just too old and too tired. So Chase Uren, but also and Harrison, but also or Harry, and Justin Ingram, but also timothy, Hartnett, Brennan, Santos, Jack Aguilar Casey from...

...thank you so much, Murray Sharp, Scott, Turko, Ben Hoganson and Nate Brascom from Chili Piper. Thank you all for listening. Please give your feedback. Please find me on Linkedin. We really really appreciate the support. share the episodes and the content that you think is interesting and tell your friends so that we can continue to grow and we can get better and better guests. So that's my thanks to all of the fans out there and without further ado, let us listen to Munya hote who's absolutely an amazing marketer and this should be a great interview. Hey, everybody, it's Sam Jacobs, your friendly neighborhood podcast host. Welcome back to the sales hacker podcast. We are really, really excited today to have somebody that I recently met that's been really influential and sort of how I approach the world of marketing. He's also a founding member of the London revenue collective, and his insights on marketing are really, really I don't know if they're controversial, but they're unique and they're incredibly helpful when you're thinking about messaging. So, without further do let's let's talk about my guests today. His name is Munya Hotel. He describes himself as a Zimbabwe born accidental marketer. Currently he is the digital marketing director at foundry, which is an award winning software provider in computer graphics, Visual Effects, gaming and design. And then, prior to foundry, he was on the founding team at Ideo, it's a content intelligence platform, where he was svp of marketing, reporting directly to the CEO. That is essentially where he learned the skill and the craft and began to apply some of his ideas to marketing. And then before that he graduated from the University of Exeter here in the UK, where we're recording this, with an MSC in economics and an honors degree, and he's he's done a lot of very important work at Cambridge University, which we'll talk about. So, Munia, welcome to the show. Sam, thank you very much for having me. We're excited to have you so what we like to do when we get started is we like to just we call it the baseball card, but we learned. We like to learn a little bit about you, a sort of where you're working, a little bit about that company. So first tell us about your full name is Munoadzi. Is that right? That's correct. Okay, good. And your title is digital marketing director at foundry. Also correct. That's right. Okay. Tell us about foundry. What is foundry? You mentioned when I saw you on Wednesday. You guys are breaking out of sort of like the film world, where I think you've wanted some awards that you'll tell us about, and into new category. So tell us. What is foundry? What do you do there? How big is the company? Walk us through that a little bit. So foundry is a producer of visual effect software, mostly focused on the movie, gaming and kind of episodic TV industry. It's been around for twenty years. Prior to about two years ago it was known as the foundry. So if you ask anybody about the foundry in the industry, that's probably what they identify with. But we dropped the the in a rebrand, which was not easy to kind of pull off, but it was much easier for our content writers to be able to kind of insert that into pr release and that kind of thing. But if you've watched a movie or a TV series in the last say, twenty years, you've probably seen some of ours tool kit in action. Nuke flagship product has become the de factor industry standard within the movie industry for compositing and actually this here for the first time actually won its own academy award at the side Tech Awards at the Oscars. Wow. Yeah, did you get to go to the Oscars? No, we sent the product team that works on nuke. I think I would have loved to be the one to go up there, but it was a real special moment for the for the kind of hard working guys would come in and go into the basement and come up with this really, really cool stuff. So we sent with each charity. If you do end up going to the Oscars, can I be your a Sam? I'm sure I'd be the lucky one in that situation. That's very kind of you to say. So it's visual effects for films, which is and then you mentioned that you're sort of applying the technology to new industry. So tell us a little bit about that. Yeah, the really cool thing right is we productized in film and TV, but at its core what our suite of products is able to do is it allows you to visualize incredible ideas. So when you elevate it to that that level, you find out their loads of industries where there's a lot of legacy kind of process around bringing ideas to life. If you think about industries where people are sketching, Pencil, crafting models and clay, then our software becomes really, really powerful. So one of the areas that we're expanding into at the moment is in footwear design, where we're helping footwear brands and some of the largest in the world move away from sketchy and Pencil into D to actually visualizing their ideas and looking at different types and formats of the of the products that they make in D and in a and V are. So that's one of the new applications and it's a really exciting space, much as for us, but even for the customers as well, because it's really really helping them to get to market faster and to see a lot more versatility in their design process. That's exciting. So how big is foundry and is it it's okay if...

...it's not. But is it a SASS business? Is a recurring revenue business or is it more transactional revenue? What's the business model? So foundry is about three hundred people and we operate in kind of a for revenue scenarios, if you can believe that. So in our core business we still have a perpetual licensing model with maintenance can of stating on the top of that. But we do have subscription products on the lower end of our price point. So some of our sculpting, texturing and paging tools, those can be bought on an annual license on a subscription model. And then we've got some of our enterprise play which can be multier reoccurring deals. So we've got the whole suite, even self transacting kind of self serving lower price point tool sets that customers can just buy on their own as well that are on a subscription model. And you're you're not really a venture backed but you're sort of private equity. Back to that right. That's right. Well, foundry began its life as a venture backed asset and then a few years into that journey carlisle came along and or alcohol company in a Pe kind of management buy out and then that then led to about five years journey with with Carlisle and then about four years ago the London based private I would you fund a Hg capital bought foundry from Carlisle and so we're a P backed asset out of London at the moment. Well, I guess you weren't really there when when I was venture back. But have you having been at venture back companies? I would have you been at venture back companies? Are Exclusively private equity back companies in your career so far? So I have been an adventure backed assets, in fact an ideo. We initially we were kind of seed backed by some angels and then we took on some Venc cut some venture capital with a notion capital, who might be well, of course notion, and that was a fantastic journey with notion. So yeah, I've been I've been in on the inside of a venture backdasset before. Is there a difference in your experience, just as being a senior operator, between venture and private equity, that you can tell or you just do your thing and you don't really care who what the CAP tables? Then yeah, there is. There is out say the main difference is the ubiquity of cash. In the eventual world. I think you can you're always feeling that tension of you know, how long have we got? What's all runaway, how much we bring in, whereas in the Pe back world you really setting the plant up front and not really worrying about the fact that you might run out of cash, because that's not really a dynamic that comes into play in the same way as if you're an adventure backed asset. Huh, is that because you're profitable or just because they've said they'll under write you no matter what? Well, it's their business. They minded to keep it going. But actually the good news is that often times in the PE world you already at a point where you're profitable and you really looking at multiple ways to expand that business, either in organical organically. So cash generally is not a challenge. That's really interesting. I like how exactly your point is is well and put, which is it's their business and adventure. There are not typically majority shareholders. So the foundry is how big is foundry? Just from a I guess we're in London recording this, so you can tell me in terms of pounds or euros or US dollars. But how big is it? So foundry is on about a I think a fifteen million pound run rate, fifty million pounds. At previous exchange rates that would be seventy million US dollars. Now it's probably closer to sixty, but still pretty big. Yeah, still pretty big and it's about three hundred people, like I said, so really tighten it while functioning team that's helping to deliver that value to to the shareholder. That's great. Well, well, mania, thank you for that overview of the business. You know, you describe yourself as as an accidental marketer. Walk us through, I guess. I mean it's always interesting to hear you grew up in Zimbabwe, how you made it from Zimbabwe first to the University of Exeter, but also to the point of sort of this conversation why coming out of Exeter. You know, you sort of describe yourself as an accidental marketer and how you're applying some of the concepts of economics to the world of marketing. That story is really, really interesting, so would love for you to share it with us. Yeah, so I am Zimbabwe and born and I encourage anybody that's listening to this podcast to spend some time down there. It's really beautiful. We obviously have one of the seven natural wonders of the world down dead the Victoria Falls. But I loved Zim at about the right age of eighteen to come out to the University of Exeter to come and study economics. The reason I chose economics was I really didn't know what I wanted to study and somebody kind of whispered in my ear that he is a discipline that if you study this you'll be able to walk into any field with some level of understanding of how a business operates. So the goal was to be as broad and kind of generous as possible and that was the reason for stepping into that in the first place. Turns out I loved it. I loved the prince pulls of it and the way it made you think about kind of prospects and customers as rational economic agents. Initially so it was during my first share there that I met up with the CO founders an idio, who were trying to build this software company, and one of the things that I brought to the table at that time was a real simple view of the world which I think often times when you're in marketing, may not always exist, and so we were taught very early on in the economics principles classes that buyers,...

...customers are just to rational economic agents that are trying to optimize their utility given their constraints, which means that they're trying to get as much value as possible out of the thing that you're trying to provide them against the constraints that they have in their universe. That could be budgetary, it could be time, it could be other resources. So how do you position your story, your product in such a way that the customer or the prospect feels that they're getting the maximum value for the least amount of investment? And so, taking that into consideration, had always be thinking that way. I wasn't trained classically in anything like branding or PR or any of those really, really cool disciplines at other marketers. Are Real strengths and but what I was capable of doing was taking a perspective on the customer. That meant that I was always trying to get to the heart of the issue rather than trying to kind of embellish or present our product in a way that was more compelled. I just wanted them to feel like if they choose us as a natural proder to do business with, they're going to get a maximum value. Interesting. So how do you do that? And for those that are are not in my brain, which is the entirety of the universe, Moon here and I were in a messaging workshop on Wednesday evening as part of the London revenue collective, where moon you sort of walk through some of his core messaging ideas. So tell us how do you help the prospect or the customer get maximum value and how does that impact the marketing messaging that you bring to market as a company making a product? It's a fantastic questions and I think when I think about prospects and customers, in fact when I when I talk to you, we started our workshop at the London revenue collective by playing a little kind of game where we were looking at whether or not we in the room were rational agents ourselves. Kind of a lottery game, and if this time, maybe one day we'll play on one of our feature discussions. But, but, but the basic for the basic premise of power approach marketing is to think about how prospects or customers, how the brain is operating as they confront or encounter the messages that we're putting in front of them. And the very, very first thing that I introduced into the discussion that we were having on Wednesday is a prospects and customers are three times more likely to move away from a pain than to move towards a game. But that's its install contrast to a lot of the messaging that you will encounter, particularly in B to B, where a lot of the websites of vendor and solution providers are talking about how much they can improve certain outcomes, how they can improve performance. But actually that's not motivating the to know the prospect at all. In fact, it's actually reinforcing their decision to do nothing rather than to actually make a decision to change. So in helping not just the businesses that I operate in today as a foundry, but some of our partners from the London revenue collective and other venture backed and pedibacked assets, help them to start to think more carefully about how to position their message in front of customers that the customer is motivated first of all to change, not necessarily to choose them as the natural partners to business with, because the hurdle that most businesses face is not about being selected as one of the solution providers in a competitive bakeoff, but it's actually getting customers to change in the first place, because most of us who are selling software to to customers are losing to the status quo more than we're losing to the competition, in fact about eighty percent of the time. How do you motivate people to change? You mentioned the sort of three times more likely to move away to resist a loss. Is that right in my expect right here? correctulate. Yeah, how do you frame that and the right way, and maybe walk us through you know you we've discussed in the past sort of like the difference between stated needs and kind of unconsidered needs. So walk us that framework a little bit. Okay. So the first thing that most kind of sales and marketing people do, and and you'll correct me if I'm wrong, but I've run an STR team before and I've support a lot of sales leaders, the first thing that we often do when we get under discovery or we're meeting customers for the first time, is we ask them to tell us what their problem is. You know, what are you struggling with? What's hard about your job at the moment and because they ask that question a lot, but a lot of service providers they've got an answer for that question and those of their stated needs. Those are the things that they know to tell you. Unfortunately, those things they've already aligned them with what they think your capabilities are as a solutions provider. And the issue with asking about those things, this voice of the customer feedback about their needs that they that they understand, is that that message is already become a commodity and does not motivate them to change. It actually reinforces them to stay in their current way of working because actually that set of circumstances that they currently operating with somebody's good idea, somebody in the organization came up with a strategy, came up with a plan that has engineered them into that position and even though they're telling you that it's a problem, they actually not minded to change very much. So in the very beginning we're always trying to figure out what are the unconsidered needs that the customer is not discussing or not revealing in those conversations, and the unconsidered needs come in kind of...

...three types. There is the undervalued unconsidered need, which is the thing where they kind of feel like it's a problem but they haven't really identified clearly the size and speed of that problem in their organization and as such, they feel like they can lint along with it quite comfortably and not have to change. The second one is the unmet unconsidered need. This is where the organization has created a workaround. They've got a they've got a manual process that they've put in place and they quite comfortable that way of working. They know it's not best in practice, they know stop perfect, but who's perfect? And they okay with it. And then the third one is the unknown unconsidered need, where they don't even know they have that problem. And so the goal in messaging, in training sales people, in putting out our distinct point of view to the marketplace, is to match those unconsidered need with what I would class as your or my unspecified capabilities. And I'll give you a very simple example. When people think about foundry, they think about foundry within the context of visual effects for films and gaming and TV, but actually, like we discussed, there is a an unspecified capability there that's actually very, very useful to footwear brands who today, in order to bring a shoe to life, are having to draw it in Pencil, modulated in clay and ship samples from the US or from the UK to China, back and forth, and that process is riddled with all kinds of unconsidered needs and inefficiencies. So when we begin to talk to them about those issues rather than just telling them that you can design a shoe better, suddenly we've identified and unconsidered need and also introduced a distinct point of view. We talked about this before, but this is similar, although you know sort of the ideas here are both very, very powerful, a little bit you know, and similar to some of the ideas that we hear about and Challenger where you're sort of trying to lead with commercial insight and particularly on sort of like the undervalued. Maybe they've stated they have an idea of a problem, but maybe they're characterizing it as an efficiency and they're not really considering the size scope, as you said, the size and the speed. Is that right? That's right, of that problem, the magnitude of that problem, and you are you have a great example from your days. That idea. Walk us through sort of how you guys, your content management system, if I'm not, if I'm not mistaken, how you took data from the market and transformed it into messaging that directly sort of stoked the pain of an unconsidered need and then and then ultimately help us tie that back to, you know, business performance and sales growth, right. Yeah, so idio, which is still growing, fantastic tool. said that, the team's built over there is a constant intelligence platform and, very simply, what idiot is able to do is it's able to build a unique interest profile about you, Sam based on what you're reading, and then is able to query that unique data, said, in order to give you the next best piece of content the next time you visit that particular website or you open the next email that's coming or being delivered to you via exact target or mocking automation like Marquette or Alloquo, this kind of thing. So we were looking at entering the wealth and asset management space because we had a distinct point of view of I was getting on there. The message that wasn't going to work was about personalization and improving the click through rates on emails and clicks on calls to actually on a website by thirty or thirty five percent. Although that would have been an interesting or good improvement, it wasn't something that was sufficiently loosening the status quo and creating urgency and uniqueness, because the challenge they had was bigger than just getting people to personalization on the website. The biggest challenge they had was about why are we producing content that's irrelevant in the first place? So walk that back and kind of explined in a bit more detail, please do. I love it. So, if you think about the the wealth and asset management space, that's a highly competitive space and the way that people choose which funds to go with is that they read content. As a result, JP Morgan, alliance, Burnstein, stateste global advisors, black prop are all producing loads and loads of reports content in order to not be missing from any conversation when the customer comes searching for content, as it pretends to oil and gas, renewables, energy mining, etc. So the challenge is that they end up producing a lot of content that nobody ever ends up reading. In fact, the statistic around that floats around about under utilized or unused contents. It's at about sixty to seventy percent. When we spend time with these brands, we found out that eighty to ninety percent of their content actually set. I'm used no one ever saw it on our website or in an email, but they were investing all of this money into producing this content. And then, when you've got so much content and you're producing it at such a high pace, be to to take comparatitively relevant. You think that the solution to your problem is personalization, because you're thinking, Huh, if I can just put the right content in front of the right person, even though I've got this huge, broad library of content, then that's going to mean we're going to be more efficient in terms of how we're using that content. But actually that...

...was actually the small end of the problem. The big problem is why are you investing millions and millions of dollars a year producing that content in the first place? And the unspecified capability that idio has is that any is able to tell you not only which content you should serve the customer, which is the output of its engine, but internally it's able to tell you which topics are read the most by your customer base and actually begin to inform your editorial and content team about what content to produce in the first place. So now you go away from trying to optimize on an inefficiency to actually creating the right content right out of the out of the box. And the saving for them was multiple millions of dollars when they started thinking about how to produce the right content in the first place, not just trying to personalize this huge library of irrelevant content that they were creating. And so we were able to not only expose that undervalued, unconsidered need around content production, not personalization, and then put an actual size and a speed to that problem, because they were telling us that their biggest challenge from a marketing perspective was budget, and then we were able to show them that actually, when eighty percent of their content sits unread, they're wasting up to, and I'm going to kind of aggregate this, between eight and ten million dollars a year in wasted budget on producing content that nobody actually ends up reading. So the natural decision to go with us in order to inform the editorial content team what to produce in the first place was and wasn't easy one at that point. It's a great story because, to your point, they're telling you, well, you know we don't have enough budget to address the solution, and you're saying, well, you know you're spending ten million dollars more than you need to. I'm sure we can find a couple Hundredzero for idio within the ten million dollars that we're going to save you over the course of the next one to two years. Is that right? That's right, that's right. And then that story became powerful when we were going into other people that look a lot like that particular asset manager, because again, they all have the same problem. And customers and believe something about you and I that sometimes we don't even know about ourselves. Customers believe that you and I see more people that look like them that they do. So as a result, they believe us when we tell them about a trend or a change that's happening in their market place because, again, they really believe that we see more people that look like them. We have an understanding of the market from a macro perspective because we are spending every day solving these challenges. So when we say to them you don't have to struggle at eighty to ninety percent of content under utilization, they take that seriously because again, they know that their competitor, who looks not like them, is working with us to solve that problem. So now again you're loosening the status Quale, you're creating urgency and uniqueness, and then, once they compelled with the need to change, you can then begin to differentiate your solution and that's where you're specified and state of capabilities can then come into into class. How do how do you? I mean, it's really, really interesting. I guess sounds like there's how do you operationalize this concept and and what do you give? Is this all sort of at the top of the funnel when it comes to content marketing? Are there tools or specific what are the tools? That are the arrows that you give to the salesperson's quiver to help them instigate this kind of conversation? So first of all, I think you have to go at lay a deeper in terms of understanding. What are the blockers in our way right what is stopping the prospect from even making the decision to change? And there's about four things that I think every salesperson, every marketer, should know before they launch, that SDR discovery, called before they even begin to craft and editorial and content strategy, and those it's four pillars really that I typically look at, and these are the things that if you don't confront these in your sales deck, on your website, you know, editorial and cold of strategy, you're not going to be successful. So here they are. The firstest preference stability. We know that customers are eighty percent of the time they're more likely to do nothing than to choose any supply, and you'll know this by analyzing your crm. Eighty percent of qualified opportunities end up choosing to make no decision, and that's because the customer has has retreated back to their current way of working. So the first thing we need to be telling our sales people is be aware that the thing that you're going to confront today, as you go into that conversation, is somebody who's wedded to the status quo and somebody who's preferences are so stable that you have to come with a provocative and unique point of view that makes them think that there is a flaw in the way that they approaching their current business process and make it an existential flaw, like a mortal wound. That means that they didn't just feel like, Oh, okay, that's bad for us this quarter, but like we continue down this path, we're not going to be in business in two to three years. The second thing is that all prospects have anticipated regret when they're thinking about a new partner, a new solution that they're trying to kind of introduce into their process, and anticipated regret is about, what if this doesn't work? You know, when you're telling us all this great stuff about how we're going to know what to write first and that's going to, let you know, kind of improve our utilization of content, what if this all goes wrong? I'm the one who's on the line here, is the sponsor of this deal. So how do you help your prospect and your customer to feel comfortable that...

...the cost of change is less than the cost of staying in the same because as you walk into that conversation, the cost of staying the same looks negligible. You know they've already discounted it, perhaps even down to zero. They feel like there's no cost to our current operational process. But the moment that I introduce in new technology, I have to consider training, I have to consider resourcing. So they've got this anticipated regret that if we make all of these investments in it goes wrong, somebody's going to be on the line for that in that person looks like me. The third thing that they're feeling about again is the anticipated they worried about the perceived cost of change, which I just talked about. This looks hard, not just from a cost and investment perspective, but how do I get the oranization as a whole to come with me? How do I get my managers to come with me, but I get my fellow decision makers to come along with this? That perceived cost of change and that that challenge of getting the organization to kind of go with this again is hard and we don't often equip ourselves people to be having that conversation. That empathizes with our sponsors when we're running a deal to say, you know what, I want you to know that this is hard. I see a lot of people that look a lot like you and it was hard for them as well, but we gave them they structured and with mythological step through that help them to go from being in this position that during today to being a successful hero to the organization. And then, finally, you've got this challenge of selection difficulty. The reason why our prospects often also fall away from from doing a deal is because they confuse. They overwhelmed with choice overload, because initially we talked about what we're capable of doing in the relay, in all of these value added services, because we're trying to get the deal done. But actually it's more important to be surgical and be very, very clear how you are a resolution to the unconsidered need that you've surfaced and making that the first step for them to begin a journey with you. So, bringing that to how do you operationalize that? Once you've laid the foundation of those unconsidered needs, you've discovered how you're going to specifically destabilize their preferences, you're going to resolve for that anticipated regret by making them the hero of the story. They're going to prove that the cost of change is less than the cost of staying the same, and you're going to sufficiently differentiate so that your solution becomes the natural next step to getting them out of the situation to find themselves in. You then, on top of that, begin to Croft messaging for the website. You begin to create an editorial cuntal strategy that says all white paper is going to be focused on these issues, because we know these cause customers to want to change. Your stalls are now acquainted with the goal of getting customers to choose to change before they choose to choose you as a solution provider. So the foundation is messaging and then everything else that's on top of that. So I have a question for you. Sure does this mean? You know, to your point of marketing, a gain is not as effective as sort of causing or provoking a sense that, to your points of status quo is untenable and that the pain of the present situation is dramatic and, as a consequence, that's the thing that's going to motivate them to change, as opposed to marketing room or sort of pitching them, you know, an incremental game, particularly against the stated need because, as you've said, that's a commodity. They've said that to every single vendor that they've come up against. Does that mean that all of our messaging kind of needs to be fear based and there can't be aspiration or optimism in the marketing messaging? You know, and like in the website, is everything about hey, you didn't know this, but your business is about to go off a lift and and it's it's all fear, uncertainty and doubt and there's nothing about hey, we can sort of change the world together and climb this mountain together in an optimistic way. What what's your take? They're actually I think it's hazardous to just be the bearer of bad news all the time. What I think we're trying to do here is to create sufficient context and contrast for the customers that they see their current situation and then they see a preferred picture of the future. So you've you've got to do both. It's not sufficient for you to just leave them in a crisis without giving them steps to be able to resolve that crisis. So, very simply, I want to bring customers into a place where they understand the real existential impact of the current way of working to their business, but then show them that the future can literally be better than that, because I work with people that look like them and I can help them to begin to make that journey. You've got to put those things side by side and the grass literally needs to be greener on the other side. So I always say anybody that I work within this regard that your product needs to be good enough, or at least the minimum viable capability of it is, needs to be competitive enough that you can actually show that the grass, if you come with me, is literally greener on the other side. But I want you to know that you cannot continue to operate your business like this, because I want to bring the reality of the flaws of your approach to your process to bear and then give you a picture of what the future looks like. But that only is effective if you have an understanding of your current context in reality. Yeah, but so understood that they live side by side. But there's a sequence. And Yeah, it does feel like the first thing you need to do is sort of tell them that their life is terrible before you...

...can make their life better. Yeah, but there's one unique case where you almost want to flip that around, and that's when it comes to the renewal conversation. And again, this is applicable to to to most of the people who are the audience to this, as far as I understand, will operating SASS businesses where retention is absolutely crucial. In the retention conversation, you are now the status quale you're somebody else is disrupting your customers point to view and telling them that they need to change. In that conversation, you need to restate to them why they shows you in the first place. Showed them the journey that they've made from there, the initial status Quale, to your current position, and how the grass for them is green up, you know. So you start by reinforcing why it was right to go with you and then, from that perspective, begin to introduce other capabilities that you can lay on on top of that from a from an upset across a perspective. But in that situation we don't want to be telling your customer that now was the time to change. The actually trying to tell them that now is the time to stay the same. Of course. Well, now you are the now you are the status quale. So you have to flip the whole thing and tell them that everything, everything is all of a sudden. Fine, one more question. So it strikes me that, I mean, I have many questions. We have a bit more time together, but it strikes me that this message has to be delivered to somebody that cares, and so that sort of speaks to me about the classic kind of value based selling concepts of moving above the power line and making sure that you're getting to power, because it you to be telling somebody that your business is failing that cares about whether the business is failing. Do you agree, disagree? Is that part of the strategy of sort of trying to get to the C suite? That's right. I think you have to elevate the conversation. I've written in the post about how sales people, particularly at the str level, are afraid of heights, and that's about if you actually analyze your crm and the volume of conversations that are happening with people that can actually make decisions that affect the business from an existential point of view is probably about twenty percent. The rest of the conversations are happening with midlevel kind of sponsors who love to have a good conversation but can actually elevate those issues or don't want to because they also don't want to be the ones to expose the business to the idea that we're not doing as well as we thought we were doing. So I would say it's key to take to elevate this conversation to the people who are worried about whether the business will be here in a year or two years. Time and again, those people don't want to know the nuance of the features that you provide a solutions provider, as a software as a software provider. They want to understand how is this going to affect our business, and so there's a little bit of a contradiction as it pertains to how most SASS businesses that have I've seen the inside of, and even we were guilty of this early on in our life at Idio, where we train our sales people a lot on what the product does, but not how it affects the customers existence going forward, whereas the customer is worried about the existence going forward, not necessarily about what your product is capable of doing from a feature and ones perspective. So there is a business acumen gap there that does exist and it's crucial at a sales leadership perspective and moxy leadership perspective to be elevating the conversation sufficiently so that you are speaking in the lexicon of the person who is capable of making a percent decision in your favor because they feel like they need to save that business from falling apart. Does this impact how you partner with the sales team in terms of the sequencing of the sales flow? To your point about I mean I completely agree with you that, particularly in product led technology led companies, the engineers often they they are passionate about what they've built and they want the business team to understand how their product works. Yeah, but they fail themselves to understand anything about or not anything. But often they fail to understand about the customers lives. And people don't they don't buy features, to your point, they buy solutions two problems that exist in their business. Yeah, so does this. You know, for example, in many men market sale cycles, the demo is like the second thing that happens. You know, you have a discovery call. It's forty five minutes. You do all the things that you've just said. Maybe you haven't said don't do them, but you've said that they are commodity things to do, like tell me about your problems, tell me about your day, you know, walk me through what your greatest struggles are, what's keeping you up at night. And then the next thing that happens is you try to move into a demo and the context, I mean, as it says, it's a demo. It's a demonstration. You're supposed to sort of do a screen share or maybe meet them in person show them the Plat form, and that's kind of like the in some ways, the apex of the sale cycle, which is, you know, okay, I asked you a bunch of questions. See my software can solve though, the answers to those questions. Do you delay the demo? Do you restructure the the entire flow of the sales or Customer Journey Presale? How do you take these ideas, not just from a content marketing perspective but from a sales process perspective and put them into action? So it's a it's a really good question and not not an easy one to solve. I would say the first thing is the people that are ready to jump on a demo and as much as we get...

...excited about about those people, again, those are the people that have already made the decision to change most of the time. So they've got a funded Denisative in the organization. They are in a vendor selection mode at that point in time, and there's nothing wrong with those guys. My contestion is that those are just a very, very small proportion of the opportunity for most solution providers and we invest all of our effort in trying to get somebody was already made a decision to change, to try and compel them that they've made the right decision, which is to change. So nothing wrong with the demos, nothing wrong with kind of being good at demos and even going in a step further with that, but I would say as it pretends to the rest of the opportunity, to eighty percent which choose to do nothing in those situations. I do want to partner with the sales organization carefully. I want to spend I listen to sales calls, I like to go along to sales meetings and I often encourage at that early stage constructured conversation. I'm trying to get to the heart of the matter of why somebody took the meeting in the first place. You know what is actually going on in the organization. That means that you know they may not be able to with their finger on it, but there's there's a compelling need for change it that we need to articulate together until we get to a point where they say, you know what, there's our magic moment if you can help us to do that thing, then you're the natural partner to do Belsu, because that is an actual issue for us. So early on, I want to move sales people away from the goal being to finish a presentation, to to move away from it being to get them to agree to a demo, to somehow quantifying, or at least getting into point where the salesperson feels confident that this prospect is ready to change. And if I could, forgo out a formula of how to kind of consistently get sales people to tell me with confidence that they may not choose us, but they're definitely going to choose somebody because I was able to articulate value to them and to show them a serious flaw in the way that they're currently approaching their process, that they are now going to make a change in their business. We can make that repeatable across our str and, marketing and demonjen functions, then we will be growing businesses, because now you're creating demand for the first time, you're not just double clicking on somebody that's already made the decision to change. That's inventor selection mode. Yeah, and that's to your point. I mean in bound marketing. Oftentimes people love and bound leads, but it's the same thing. Their inventor selection mode. Right. They became a lead in all likelihood because they're becoming a lead for a lot of people. Yeah, exactly, definitionally competitive. So that's the beauty of outbound sales. You've decided they're good fit based on the profile and the persona and then hopefully your messaging can help you get in there. That's right. You've made it pretty clear that walking in the shoes of the customers important. How does this impact? I guess you have a point of view on hiring sales people or marketing people from industry, or is it really about the training and sort of investing heavily and onboarding so that you can take people that don't practicularly have industry background and mold them and sculpt them and help them understand the context of the buyer that they're selling to? Such a preference? I'm in two minds about this. I'll tell you what. When it comes to Stas, when I've been building out those teams, I didn't take people that were coming from from industry at all. I took people that were coming from recruitment and most times of people that were coming from hospitality, because I liked people who could create a repoll and build a relationship with customers. With the I could train them effectively on understanding how to approach the customer and to coast them into thinking and empathizing with the customer and really articulating with value. But what I really needed was the role ingredients of somebody who can create relationships with customers and who customers can feel comfortable with, but then somebody who was also curious to learn how do our customers make money, not just what do we do, and how can we help them to be more successful and help them to grow? So I'm not I'm not a stickler for hiring from industry. had rather hire from parallel or tangential verticals where there is a best practice around creating a relationships, particularly at the str stage, makes sense. So, Munia, I think we're sort of coming to the end of our time together for this session. I'm sure there will be future sessions. One of the as I say, one of the things we like to do is sort of pay it forward and understand how you became you a little bit and and sort of hear about some of your influences, some of your mentors, I know that you've had them. They're sort of one person that you mentioned the other night that I want everybody to hear about. And then there's a professor. So tell us a little bit about the people that have helped you come to these realizations and formulate these opinions so we can do a little bit of research and celebrate them a little bit. Sure, the first guy that I want to pay homage too, and I would never claim to have come up with these ideas, is Tim Ristra, who's the chief strategy officer at corporate visions. Terms of phenomenal guy, his ideas on prospect theory and behavioral science as it pertains to marketing and Messaging Really, really transformed my perspective. I remember sitting in a conference when I saw him speak for the first time and making the decision to change. It was that good. I came back and I sat out executing down at...

...the time and I said, guys, we've been getting it all wrong. We've been trying to talk about who we are and what we do and it's time for us to really really double click on the you know, understanding how our customers lives are at risk unless we come in and and articulate that value to them. So Tim has been phenomenal to me. We've we've subsequently done webinars together. I'm a fan of his books. So I would definitely say three value conversations is one of the the fantastic game change and kind of assets that I've taken off and recently I spent some time, I think I mentioned that, the University of Cambridge with Professor Eden in again looking at prospect theory and understanding. You know, how do you define need? What is that equation? If you could simplify it, that means that we can begin to understand the key drivers. That mean people reach a consensus decision and be to be and make that in our favor. So so professor in fantastic researcher in the world of Payroll Economics and prospect theory again, and I've taken those kind of two influences and really built a practice around messaging. So I'm forever grateful to them and will shout about them many opportunity I get very good any books are content that you're consuming that's been particularly influential that we should be aware of. Yeah, I view. Guess it's not a question you ask me. Jona burghers contagious, I think, is a fantastic book about why things go viral. I think it's a ride of passage for every kind of demand and led marketer. He gives you a very, very good lens through which to think about how to craft programs that give customers value, that give them social currency, that make sure that things go bigger. So I'd say that's a fantastic book, one of my kind of repeated reads. And then most recently thinking fast and slow by Dan and has helped me again to reinforce these ideas around prospect theory and payboy comics. Very good, Dan Connoman. Thank you. FATO's little great book parting words, Life Mottos give us something inspirational to leave us with. I'd say one of the things that that I really believe in is we should all discover what, I'll strength is and kind of stay in that box. We're not always going to be good at everything. I don't think we should feel under pressure to be good at everything. I think we should delegate all the stuff that's not in our core capability. You know, Samuel and my weaknesses are somebody's opportunity, and I think we should. We should resist the impulse because we're in charge, because we're responsible, because we have remit to keep a hold of of things that are not in the center of what I was our call strength and capability, and to delegate that stuff out to somebody WHO's dying in a corner somewhere, hoping that you give them the opportunity to have a go at it. So I'd say double click on your strengths and delegate your weaknesses. So yeah, okay, I believe it. Last thing when you I'm sure people have that are listening to this have been inspired, they have questions. Maybe they want to have a conversation or coffee with you. If people want to reach out to you a is that okay and be. What's your preferred mechanism or channel? Hey, that is okay and be. If you can connect with me on Linkedin, massively off for that. I take them, almost all connections that come my way, so happy to engage it. Is it Munya hotel at Linkedin, or is it when you re to you? How what is it? It's minora Zi hotel. I'M gonna Zee Hotel. Yes, so that's that's that's the easy place to go. And Yeah, we can take it from them. Always keen to meet New People, and especially people that are building disruptive or category creating softway. Wonderful, Mounia, thanks so much for your time on the sale soccer podcast. We really appreciate it. Thank you very much then, everybody, this is Sam's corner. Moonya hote has a lot of really, really insightful ideas about marketing and I hope, I hope it got your head spending a little bit and that you're thinking about the concepts. Let me walk you through a couple key ideas, and this is not some of these aren't just new, they're just they're just repackaged in really interesting and useful ways. First thing is we all love in bound leads, but you got to understand what does that mean that they're an inbound lead? It means that they have decided that they have pain and they are actively seeking to remedy that pain. That's okay, but it means that you're probably not the only person that they're seeking to remedy that pain with. Once you're out there searching on the Internet, there's a lot of different options, especially if your competitors are, you know, advertising on Google right above your search result. So the first thing is you have to understand that an inbound lead, they're very valuable and and maybe in certain sales and if you're just an expert demandaiin marketer, they're not going to be competitive comparison shopping, but most of the time they will be, and that means that you're going to compete on price. That means that you're going to be chiseled, which is a word that I use a lot, and reduced. And so that's okay. We need that money, we need that business and we need that content, the content marketing that drives the inbound leans. But we really have to understand that's why outbound is valuable. Outbound is valuable because you've decided they're a fit and you can control the experience in a way that you can't when they're an inbound lead. So that's...

...one thing to think about related to that when you have pointed out stated needs. Right. So when you ask what's your daytoday like? What's keeping you up at night, just remember they are saying the same answer to the market, to everybody, and that means that they're already putting you in a box, and that box is a commodity box. And so that's why you have to lead, as challenge or tells us, with commercial insight. You have to be provocative and you have to teach them something new about their business that reframes their world, because you have to move into the undiscovered needs. Right, the unknown, undiscovered needs. That's where eighty percent, that's when he says you know, eighty percent of your crm is lost, but has undiscovered needs and chooses to do nothing. He's just talking about traditional win rates. Right. If it's a well qualified opportunity, we expect to win one out of five times. Four out of five times they choose to do nothing. So that's the opportunity. How do we get the people that are competitors aren't even working at how do we get those people to change? Yes, within the twenty percent of the deals that we win, yes, they've decided to change. They were in a bakeoff. It's going to be a competitive situation many of the time, especially in b Tob Sass, where you know we're all selling similar solutions or there's three providers in the specific category. So that's okay. We want to win those deals. We have to win those deals. That's the hard way. But think about how to go where they ain't, as they say. How do you go where your competitors aren't? One of the ways that you do that is by provoking undiscovered needs and being provocative and sales conversations. I don't mean provocative like swearing or being an asshole. I mean being provocative by delivering unique insights that the prospects hadn't considered and get people that weren't going to do anything, get them. Size that at size and speed. That's what Luna says. Frame that that opportunity, frame that pain in a way that makes not changing untenable. And again, the only way that you're also going to do that as you're talking to somebody that gives a shit, and the people that give a shit tend to be the more senior people. The most junior people oftentimes do not give a shit. So try to move higher in the conversation. And now we need we need to get those mobilizers, like Bret Adams and says, but move higher in the conversation and then, and then try to unlock that eighty percent. Try to change your win loss right by using messaging that makes the that sort of speaks to and address is undiscovered needs rather than stated needs. So this has been Sam's corner. Before we go, we also always have to thank all of the sponsors and all of the people. So to check out show notes see upcoming guests. That's actually not true. I don't think that we have upcoming guests on that Web page, but we have previous guests. So check out show notes, see previous guests and play more episodes from our incredible lineup of sales and marketing leaders and other inspirational figures. Visit Sales Hackercom and head to the PODCAST TAB. You'll find us on itunes or Google play. If you enjoyed the episode, please do share it with your peers on Linkedin, twitter or elsewhere. So just click that share. It's really easy to do and we appreciate it. And if you want to get in touch with me, find me on twitter at Sam f Jacobs or on Linkedin at Linkedincoma, the word in and then slash and then Sam f Jacobs. And as you can tell from the intro where I thanked all of our fans, I really do appreciate it. We appreciate at the team. There's a team here that's working really, really hard. Thank the team includes a bunch of different people that I can't name right now but I will name next week, but they're amazing. The sales hacker team in the outreach team are absolutely amazing to work with. And finally, thanks to our sponsors, that's air call, your advance cal center software, complete business phone and contact center, hundred percent natively integrated into any CRM, and outreach a customer engagement platform that efficiently and effectively engages prospects to drive more pipeline and close more deals, and it also positions you as a salesperson as thoughtful, intelligent and capable of delivering unique in personalized insights. So that's what outreach can do for you. I will see you next time. Thanks for listening to Me Talk.

In-Stream Audio Search

NEW

Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (408)