3. Death By a Thousand Slides If you've ever sat in on a sales call, you might wonder whether commissions were based on size of PowerPoint presentations. But these electronic one-way conversations do little to further the outsourcing pursuit. Alternative for IT service providers: Ditch the preso. "Clients are so used to slides that what will stick out in their mind the most is someone who came to have a conversation with them, not talk atthem," says Herrera. "You know all your competitors are going to attempt PowerPoint murder, so why not stand out in the crowd?"
4. The Old Bait and Switch There must be a secret outsourcing sales handbook that says if you want to win business, you need to bring a Very Important Person to the first meeting. Problem is, the customer will never see that big shot again and will feel mislead. Indeed, the sales team often implies that the star they trot out will be integral to the customer's service delivery. "In reality, this same group of A-list players is being promised to multiple potential customers and will be assigned to whoever signs first," says Mark Ruckman, outsourcing consultant with Sanda Partners. Alternative for IT service providers: Take that effort misspent trotting Ms. Big out for the dog-and-pony show and bring a real-life customer instead. "There is no more powerful marketing than what an existing, happy client can say about you," says Herrera of HfS Research. "Fly them first-class and put them up for the weekend at a great resort nearby. Sit your customer down in the middle of the room and let the prospect ask questions."
5. I'm the [Fill-in-Your-Industry-Here] ExpertWhen Sanda Partner founder Adam Strichman worked on IT services sales teams, he acquired different titles based on the prospect. "One week I would be introduced as part of the retail team. The next week I was part of the dedicated financial [services] team," Strichman recalls. "Industry specific knowledge is usually 85% marketing. When delivery time comes around, almost every worker bee is from a centrally managed team that supports every client." Alternative for IT service providers: Smart buyers can see through this faÃƒÂ§ade. Becomes an actual expert by ask them smart questions about their biggest business problems and coming back with valuable solutions.