In this training tip, Aaron Evans takes us on a walkthrough of how to take customers on a journey through their pain is no exception. All of your sales reps and Revenue Enablement teammates should give a listen and learn how to help uncover customer pain points.

Most sales methodologies provide reps approaches to help prospects uncover their business challenges by finding the customer pain points. The belief is that all people buy via emotion, not logic, and then justify it to themselves using whatever reason is handy.

And few emotions are more powerful than pain.

What is a customer pain point?

For the sake of this discussion, let’s keep this simple. A customer pain point is simply the root cause of any pain that is negatively impacting the business’ or team’s ability to achieve specific, measurable goals.

Getting prospects to articulate their business pain

It is critically important to guide the customer to a point where they can clearly articulate their pain point (s). Aaron provides insights into doing this by taking customers from their initial comments to more concrete definitions of pain. For example, they may say things like “we need to increase our win rates,” and, through the process of discovery, you may end up identifying that “we need to drive 20% more revenue this calendar year while only adding 5% more sellers to the team”.

Use open-ended questions

Please stay away from simple yes/no questions, get your prospects talking and continue to peel back the onion from their original requirements until you’ve reached the root pains that are keeping them up at night. Open-ended questions require your buyer to explain why, how, and what you need to understand.

Example open-ended questions

Questions that use starting words like Explain, Describe, Why, How, and similar force potential customers to think and explain the challenges they are dealing with in more detail.

For example, if your prospects say they need to onboard sales reps faster, ask them questions like these:

  • Why is the current pace of onboarding negatively impacting the business?
  • What skills should new sellers have when they exit your onboarding program?
  • Please describe your onboarding program, the depth of knowledge shared, and sellers’ overall readiness when they come out of the program.

How else does this discovery process help sellers sell

  • The questioning helps prospects identify additional pains, problems, and challenges they may not yet be aware of, potentially providing you with more challenges to solve and more to sell.
  • Positions you and your company as an advisor, solving problems not merely selling a product, service, or feature.
  • Determines how to customize your proposal to best align with the customers’ needs.
  • It helps prospects better understand the impact of the dreaded no-decision decision
  • Aids the sales team in uncovering other members of the customer buying committee and key members you need to engage with if you are going to make this sale
  • It brings possible objections to the surface, allowing you to deal with them early instead of encountering them late in the sales cycle when they have a better chance of landing a knockout punch on your opportunity.