Migrated from eDJGroupInc.com. Author: Greg Buckles. Published: 2015-02-12 19:00:00Format, images and links may no longer function correctly. 

When I was wearing my ‘analyst’ hat, LTNY briefings with providers had a consistent level of marketing fluff and dancing around my questions while they did their best to get free market insight. Now wearing my consulting hat again, I filled my LTNY 2015 time arranging client meetings with potential providers for active initiatives. I did my best to proactively weed out sale’s demos on autopilot by sending providers three key bullet points and limiting meetings to 30 minutes. Call it ‘best intentions’ while underestimating the seductive power of the temptation to spiel. I found myself making notes on what NOT to do while presenting to a prospect instead of my usual key take-away bullets. So here are some of my slightly tongue-in-cheek pointers. If we did a meeting in NY, just assume that I am talking about someone else for the sake of your ego.

  1. Don’t be late to the meeting. I know that they eliminated your favorite bar right off the lobby, but we put in the prep time, so care enough to confirm the meeting location, check your email/text regularly and don’t schedule meetings back-to-back unless you have a suite.
  2. Never say that you are the ONLY provider that does something unless you are ABSOLUTELY sure of it. Anyone who you are meeting with is probably just met with your competitors. You want to call out your differentiators, but this tactic almost always kills your credibility. It happened in almost every meeting this year.
  3. Don’t give a history lesson on your company. That also means don’t deep dive into architecture or nerd out on your tech for a non-technical audience unless we ask for it. We will do our diligence after we have confirmed that your offering actually meets the basic requirements. Focus on what you do and what we asked for.
  4. If we ask to see a product, show the interface immediately and stick to the usage case supplied. See #3.
  5. Don’t throw around Relativity certifications and ‘Best in Service’ levels like my clients care about whether your banner is blue or orange. Relativity is the new black. Everyone has it. In the words of the aliens from Buckaroo Banzai, “So what, big deal.”
  6. If what you are doing puts the audience to sleep (literally), then STOP DOING THAT. Nuff said.
  7. Don’t let the founder run the demo. Really. They love their baby too much to effectively listen to the audience and keep to the focus points. See #3.
  8. If you are not Japanese and we are not in Japan, don’t do the two handed bow presentation of your business card. It is just weird.
  9. Don’t stare at my client’s cleavage. Period. This is a business meeting.
  10. Don’t continue to sell a product if I have just told you that it does not meet our requirements. Don’t make me be the bad guy by having to stop you so that we can depart gracefully. You did your job and helped us exclude you from further consideration at this time. Let it go.

My key piece of advice is Sales 101. GET TO THE POINT AND STOP MONOLOGING. My apologies for allowing this blog to descend into a generic rant with shouting caps, but it has been a while since I did that many back-to-back sales meetings. The experienced professionals delivered succinctly to the focus points and left my clients wanting to schedule a follow up. There is never enough time to cover everything in a conference meeting, so stop trying. I hope that you had a great time at LTNY 2015. I actually enjoyed walking the floor with clients this year. It is good to see the messaging through their eyes.

Greg Buckles wants your feedback, questions or project inquiries at Greg@eDJGroupInc.com. His active research topics include analytics, mobile device discovery, the discovery impact of the cloud, Microsoft’s 2013 eDiscovery Center and multi-matter discovery. Recent consulting engagements include managing preservation during enterprise migrations, legacy tape eliminations, retention enablement and many more.

Blog perspectives are personal opinions and should not be interpreted as a professional judgment. eDJ consultants are not journalists and perspectives are based on public information. Blog content is neither approved nor reviewed by any providers prior to being posted. Do you want to share your own perspective? eDJ Group is looking for practical, professional informative perspectives free of marketing fluff, hidden agendas or personal/product bias. Outside blogs will clearly indicate the author, company and any relevant affiliations. 

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