Sales-Market Fit

with Whitney Sales

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Market Fit

Speaking the right language

Whitney Sales

Founder of The Sales Method, Consultant, Growth Expert

Lessons Learned

Product Market Fit misses the critical go-to-market element of product success.

Value-based language is customer-focused & talks about how your solution will impact their business.

Understand the language that your customer speaks and develop your messaging around that.


Lesson: Sales Market Fit with Whitney Sales

Step #9 Market Fit: Speaking the right language

Product market fit means going into a good market and developing a product that satisfies the need of that market. That doesn't take into account any of the elements around reaching and marketing and selling to that market. It just looks at whether there's a need there.

The term product market fit, it misses the element of what your go-to-market strategy is. They do a very good job of looking at who your potential title of your customer would be, the potential industries that you would be working with, some channels you could potentially go into, but it doesn't look at what messaging are you going to need to use to reach your customer, maybe how big those departments are going to be. This is a really interesting thing around sales and marketing.

If you have a marketing product like a Marketo for example, when you're initially going to market, you want to target companies that have a bigger marketing department versus a smaller marketing department because you know where those budgets are; same thing if you have a sales solution, you're going to go after larger sales departments versus smaller sales departments. They don't take those factors into account in looking at how you're actually going to go to market.

Another interesting piece is if you're selling to the SMB space, looking specifically at how receptive your customer is and how you actually reach your customer. For an online message, for example, if you're doing a low cost sale, you need a way to access and mass market so you can get a lot of leads so you have a shorter sales cycle because sales is expensive. With that market, if they're not receptive to online marketing, they can be very hard to reach. How do you go about reaching them? It might not be the best market for you to be going into to start.

Value-based language is a critical piece when you actually think about selling. So we talked a little bit about storytelling and why to do it. When you look at value-based language, it focuses on the customer and what value that customer is actually going to see and how it's actually going to impact their business overall.

So when I sit down with a customer, it's really important to understand what pains that they're seeing and how our solution is actually going to solve or address those pains. When you're structuring how you talk to a customer, VC, any other business owner, someone you're marketing to, it's really important to actually put yourself in the shoe of that customer, understand the language that they speak and the pain points they're having, and structure how you speak in conjunction with how they're going to receive that message.

One of the companies I worked with is IP to company information, which is a really vague feature. It doesn't really mean much to someone. However, if you look at the benefit of IP to company information, it played a very big role in how companies structured their marketing department and spent their marketing dollars. So, we'd take the IP to company information and plug this into their Google Analytics. They could see their marketing activities and how effective they were at targeting specific industries.

So for example, if we were looking at a company that was targeting the accounting space, we could see how if we were doings some targeted advertising, for example, how effective that advertising was at bringing KPMG back to our website, then on top of that, how likely they were to convert.

So we knew how effective specific marketing activities were and where to actually spend our marketing dollars. So companies would implement this solution and see tremendous cost savings because they knew which marketing activities were going to actually drive the behavior of specific industries that they were looking to bring to their site.

When you're looking at lead generation, this is really important because it actually minimizes the overall sales cycle. So they saw increases in sales from implementing just IP to company information on their Google Analytics by like 40%. It's a really important piece when we actually look at it.

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