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Beating The Typewriter (Part 2)

by Doug Davidoff | May 5, 2011 4:49:00 AM

Creating DemandYesterday, I shared the challenges associated with selling new and better products/services.  I shared the six steps to preparing to sell anything disruptive.  Today, I'm going to put the six steps in actions and share with you how I would sell word processing in an age when the Selectric typewriter with auto correct tape was considered cutting edge.

Putting It All Together

I'd focus on mid-sized and large law firms.  Before the word processor, these firms dealt with paper and writing in massive ways.  They had large secretarial pools that created no value but retyping complex documents.  Think about the waste!

Also, at the time of the word processor, laws and regulations were changing that dramatically affected a law firms ability to compete.  So while the general partners within these firms cared little about the technology called "word processor," they cared greatly about their partnership distributions and their ability to compete.

I'd provoke their awareness on the large, unnecessary waste caused by the constant typing and re-typing of documents.  I'd share with them the leverage they could gain by serving far more clients, with far fewer people.  And I wouldn't stop there.  I share how small savings in time and costs spread throughout the organization added up into millions of dollars of lost profits.

I'd ask them what they would do with those profits.  Would they add them to their distributions making far more money with no increase in effort?  Would they take the cost savings and reduce their fees in an effort to take business and market share from their competitors?  I'd highlight the dangers they'd face if they failed to adjust and adopt this new technology. I'd acknowledge the costs, fear and disruption associated with buying from me, and I'd highlight the costs of not buying from me.  As history proved, it would become a pretty easy decision.

I think you get the point.  I'd sell word processing, not by focusing on the word processor - but by focusing on the result.  I'd sell small technology in a BIG way.

Maybe you're not selling a disruptive technology.  Maybe your product/service isn't the game changer that the word processor was.

It doesn't matter!  In today's commoditized world, adopting these 6 steps is the only way to ensure that you get the reward your deserve.