To Ask or Not To Ask

 
 How do you ask questions if you don't know what to ask?
 

The Call

Imagine this scenario:
With demand growing for a new technology product you are totally unfamiliar with, you finally set up a call with a salesperson to figure it all out and determine what you need, or if it will even work for you. You are a bit apprehensive because: 1) you don’t know much about the product or even what it can do for you, 2) you don’t have time for this call because there are so many other pressing needs, and 3) you hate sales calls! Regardless, you know it has to be done, so you bite the bullet and jump on the call.

Surprisingly, the call seems to go very well. The salesperson seems confident, has just the right balance of friendliness, and is informative. Soon, you are engrossed with the product. They take you through screenshots and examples that promise you the world, all with very little work on your part. You start to believe that this product really is amazing and too good to be true. You kick yourself, bringing yourself back to reality, but can’t find anything in what they are saying that makes you believe otherwise. The call ends exactly on time, with the salesperson saying something like, “Feel free to ask me any questions you have! I am always available!” You leave the call, feeling proud of yourself and confident that this product is right for your event and you completely understand how to easily implement it.

An hour later, as you look at the demo that was sent over, you are clueless. You have no idea what to do. This looks nothing like what you saw on your call. You are lost. You don’t want to call the salesperson back and have them explain things to you again - you said earlier that you understood it. That happy, informative conversation is now a blur and seems like a lost void in your day. Obviously, you know you have lots of questions to ask because you don’t know what to do or where to start, but you don’t know what to ask or how to ask it!

To ask or not to ask. That is the question.
What do you do when you don’t know what to ask?

Does this situation sound familiar? It is all too common for companies to script out their sales pitches, even to the point of recording them and practicing them verbatim. They focus on getting the delicate balance of psychology and language to make you feel comfortable and informed. Their scripted performances do not take into account that each person they speak to is unique and different, and each brings with them a different level of experiences and knowledge. This is where the process breaks down, and the language barrier occurs. Both sides begin speaking different languages. The company reviews their call and sees everything went according to script, so you should totally understand everything. You haven’t contacted them because you are overwhelmed or too busy. They think it is simply because they did a great job and you have no questions. They follow up in a few days anyways, asking if you have any questions. You do, but you don’t know what to ask or how to ask it! This begins the cycle of frustration and time-consuming effort, just trying to get started!

Let me clarify something here. A lack of quality communication does not mean the product is bad. There are plenty of successful companies with wonderful products that implement these typical, yet ineffective strategies. As a public school teacher for 10+ years, I found that using a script is not the best way to ensure understanding. It is simply a way to not say something wrong. While it serves to protect the person speaking, it does nothing to ensure understanding of the topic. To teach something to someone, you must first have an ultimate understanding of the topic yourself - not from a script you memorized, but from first-hand knowledge and expertise. At that point, you are ready to have a conversation and truly talk with someone, without needing a script. You can mold a conversation effectively, and explain anything that person may need.

At Power Event Group, we aim to remove the language barrier, struggle, and confusion between planners and event technology companies. As both planners and event technologists, we are able to speak and understand both sides of the table, with the ability to effectively communicate with both sides. Whether it is discussing contracts, comparing technology needs, managing an event app, building and managing your online registration, or actually implementing the technology and asking the questions for you, we are here to help bridge that gap.

We understand that technology is sometimes overwhelming, especially when it is new to you or you don’t have the time to comprehend and learn the million things that were thrown at you in your demo call. We also understand that everyone has a different level of expertise, and sometimes, it just doesn’t make sense. Our goal is to help you understand it, not sell it.

If the typical sales calls don’t work for you, give us a call. Tell us what your goals are, and we can discuss what the best options are for you. From there, we can train you and your staff, or even implement the product for you, removing the sales calls, confusion, language barriers, and time constraints.