Learn ways to promote and sell Extended DISC® assessments to your clients and organization.
You know the strength of DISC in improving communication. You may also know how to deliver DISC, but how do you promote and sell Extended DISC® tools? Are you working for a training company or are you an independent consultant looking to enhance your business? Perhaps you're an internal trainer looking to use the DISC tool to help your employees succeed. Whatever the reason, we can all use tips on how to effectively promote and sell Extended DISC®.
Extended DISC® is a component to helping people make the most effective modifications to succeed. Our clients are excited about the range and flexibility of the tool and can't wait to share it with others. Now they just need to get it out there to the marketplace or within their organization. Ideally, people will recognize the value and come to you. It simply isn't enough to post on your catalog website or to send out as an informative email. The challenge is to get people to ask for it. However, the reality is people simply aren't going to ask to purchase a DISC tool. They don't automatically recognize its value as a solution to their problems.
Why is Extended DISC® like an MRI?
Compare your Extended DISC® business to an MRI business. People don't simply buy MRI's. It just doesn't happen. Typically, they go to their doctor for a problem. The doctor may then prescribe an MRI to help diagnose the problem. We don't resist because we know it helps solve our problem. The same thing goes for DISC assessments. People rarely will come to you only to buy an assessment. They come to you to buy a solution to their problem. Therefore, focus on your client's problems first and only then, connect it to the DISC tool solution.
Identifying the problems
It could be as common as a communication breakdown. Conflicts are another common problem. Workplace conflicts don't usually stem from a personal dislike of a person, but rather, from a difference in communication styles. The Extended DISC® model works well in conflict situations because it does not judge either sides. The DISC application allows both sides to focus on unbiased information to minimize the conflict and facilitate more effective communication.
In the past decades, leadership challenges have become a major focus of organizations. It is critical to identify potential leaders and develop existing ones in order for organizations to grow and thrive. In sales, the challenge is to teach our sales professionals how to modify their behaviors to sell successfully. Too often, even the best sales professionals sell on auto-pilot. They repeat the same sales pitch over and over, without identifying the buyer or situation. Hence, they are losing out on potential sales.
We've all worked in teams we've felt were not as effective as they should be. Ineffective teamwork is a major issue that can oftentimes be seen when working in group settings.
On a larger scale, many leaders don't have enough useful information to make decisions about their employees. It's like flying a plane in dark without any navigational instruments. Most of us feel our employees are our most valuable assets, but these same leaders have to make important decisions without any solid data. Have you ever heard the saying, "people don't quit their job, they quit their manager"? There often is a link to the manager's role when employees quit. The DISC tool provides useful data for managers to lead more effectively.
Challenges and problems for the manager
Many managers lose sleep over people problems at work. Some managers might have very productive employees, but also have underperforming ones. There may be huge differences in productivity. They may have high employee turnover. Some of it may be related to the manager's inability to lead, motivate, and communicate. Managers may be frustrated because they can't get their vision across or their employees are not aligned with the company's vision and strategy. What it really comes down to is, when you have people, you have people problems that need to be solved.
Finding solutions to the problem
Once we understand and identify the problem then we can use Extended DISC® to deal with the root causes of the problem. We aren't wasting as much time on the symptoms of the problem. Extended DISC® is your first step to solving people problems. It helps your client and you understand what you are dealing with. The information provides a road map to viable solutions. It's important to clarify the different uses of the tool; one is an engaging workshop experience and one is a solid application that leadership will support and value. Your client's biggest success is to have DISC become a part of the organizational culture.
The key to selling Extended DISC® to your client or employee is to not talk about it. Sounds crazy, right? Instead, ask questions that help you understand what the problems are. Think back to the MRI analogy. Most of us know we may need an MRI, but we don't normally care what company makes the MRI. We trust our provider that it is the best one to help take care of our problem.
What if my client or employee already uses behavioral assessments?
It's actually good news when you have a client or employee who is already familiar with behavioral assessments. It means they already see the value. They are more open to finding ways to fix a problem using such tools. Make sure to ask questions to find out.
If your clients or employees are specifically using another DISC tool don't be threatened. It's great news because they already like and value DISC. Many Extended DISC® clients are former users of other DISC tools. They will see the additional benefits of Extended DISC® and find it easier to transition since they already understand the DISC theory.
Your greatest competitor is apathy; when your clients don't care to change or fix the problem. They may feel overwhelmed or have already given up. Apathy can be a big hurdle to overcome. Your sales skills will need to be leveraged. Ask questions to diagnose the problem. Make the connection of how Extended DISC® can help solve the problem. Remember the MRI analogy.
Be the product of the product
Practice what you preach and be a product of what you are selling and promoting. Your credibility helps to further the sales process since your prospect is unlikely to know or care about the differences between DISC tools. They are relying on your trustworthiness to help them solve their problems with the best tools possible.
Your product goes beyond self-awareness. The Four-step Process guides you to more successful interactions. The first step is to understand the DISC model. Second, you gain self-awareness with insight into your own preferred behavioral DISC style. Third, you need to learn and practice identifying the behavioral style of your prospect to sell and promote your product effectively. The fourth and ultimate step is to make the appropriate, conscious adjustments to be more successful.
Your Sales System
Do not stop using your own sales system when you promote and sell Extended DISC®. Use it in conjunction with the 4-step Process. You need to continue to use your professional sales skills; selling DISC assessments is like selling any other product successfully.
Keep the selling process simple. We tend to get excited about the many things Extended DISC® has to offer. However, it can easily overwhelm your prospect. Focus on solving or making progress on their problem first, using the 4-step Approach and one application at a time. Once your prospect recognizes the solution doesn't require a complicated solution, he/she is more likely to expand the application to other situations and areas.
Make your client look good. There are many times where your client wants to bring Extended DISC® into their organization. Our job should be to make our client look good by succeeding from the start. If they don't, they are less likely to keep using it. If they succeed, they will want to use it again. Don't forget to follow-up and educate them on further options.
After initial success
Once your client has a successful first application then you can explain how Extended DISC® tools can solve many people problems. Continue to ask questions and listen. What other benefits and problems can Extended DISC® solutions help with? Don't overlook the opportunities where Extended DISC® can help. For example, you can highlight:
- One DISC questionnaire generates unlimited assessments.
- Pay only once.
- Different reports for different applications such as teams, sales, conflicts, leadership, etc.
- Organization wide applications.
Next Steps to Promoting and Selling Extended DISC®
In order to promote and sell Extended DISC® you really need to help your prospect identify and understand what their people problems really are. Listen closely and ask questions. Once you've identified it, you need to connect it to a solution. Keep it focused and simple. In the beginning, don't overwhelm prospects with benefits of Extended DISC® tools. They just want a solution to their problem and it is a useful diagnostic solution. Your goal is to help the prospect understand what the problem is and the what is the impact of the problem. They need to be able to relate to it at a personal level so they want to solve the problem. Now, connect to the Extended DISC® solution.