The Selling Power of a Demonstration

Sean from Psychotactics has an interesting article (posted at MarketingProfs) about the selling power of demonstration.

The executives at Corning Glass were astounded.

Somehow, it seemed that one of their salesmen was selling far more glass than any of the other members of the sales force.

Corning had just developed the safety glass and was introducing the concept to prospective customers. At the time, the concept of safety glass was new, and customers were very skeptical about this new type of glass. In short, sales weren't exactly going through the roof.

Yet there was one salesman (let's call him Martin) who was filling orders as fast as greased lightning. And that left the executives at Corning Glass flummoxed. How could it be that Martin was so far ahead of the rest? What strategy could Martin be using that was so very compelling? Why were customers lining up to buy from Martin while they seemed lukewarm to the rest of the sales force?

He gave a demonstration, of course. I like to take this one step further and let the customer sample the product/service if at all possible. When you sell something novel, I think the biggest fear of potential buyers is that it doesn't really work. Once they see that it does, price and everything else doesn't matter so much.