The 17-Second Challenge
Ok, welcome to week 2 of my Perception IS Reality blog. Thanks for all the great feedback last week. This week’s challenge is going to make you squirm a little. It always does. I do this with executives and salespeople all the time. They don’t enjoy it but, in time, tell me how much it makes them reflect and change. I hope it does the same for you.
So, you ask—why the 17-second challenge? What does that mean? Glad you asked. First, I am tired of the term “elevator speech,” and second 17 seconds is about all the time you have to communicate something to another person before they lose interest.
So here is the assignment. You have 17 seconds to make your point. By the way, you should time yourself when doing this, which you should do right after reading this post. That way, you’ll do it without preparing something and as if you had to do it on the spot—otherwise 17 seconds is too much time. Please act quickly because this message will self-destruct (just kidding...needed to be sure you were still engaged).
So, without using the words—price, service or quality—you have 17 seconds to tell me why I should buy from your organization versus the countless other choices? What is it about your company that is unique? What is your DSF (Differentiating Sales Factor)? For goodness sake, would you buy from you? So, as of right this moment, think through this question and develop your response. You have 17 seconds.
Can you do it? Remember: Do not mention the typical price, service and quality “buzz words.” Why? Let me let you in on a little secret—those three words are not simply desired by buyers—they are EXPECTED! If you’re interested, I cover all of this in more detail in my book, available at www.everyoneinsales.com.
But, for now, the clock is ticking (no pun intended). Give me a compelling reason that gels with your company’s DNA of why (without using the three aforementioned words) you should get the business over all the other similar options. Good luck; I am eager to see what you come up with and if you could do it in the time allotted.
Ryan T. Sauers has spent 25 years leading and/or consulting with printing, graphics, promotional and visual communications related organizations. Ryan is President of the independent consulting firm, Sauers Consulting Strategies, founded in 2010.
Key areas of focus of the firm include: sales training, marketing strategy, personal branding, leadership development and organizational change.
Sauers is a frequent national speaker and columnist. He has been recognized as one of the top 80 CMOs in the world and achieved the top designation of Certified Marketing Executive through Sales and Marketing Executives International.
Sauers is an adjunct university professor teaching leadership and communication courses to current and aspiring leaders. He is a Certified Myers Briggs, DiSC and Emotional Intelligence Practitioner (one of few in US to achieve all 3 rigorous certifications related to human communications, personality & behavior).
Sauers is working on his Doctoral degree in Organizational Leadership and hosts a radio show in Atlanta (Marketing Matters). He is author of the best-selling books Everyone is in Sales and Would You Buy from You? More info at: RyanSauers.com