Archive for December 2009

Hungry boyI recently asked the following question on a number of social networking sites:

“Does a hungry man prefer: a) an explanation of how the kitchen works, b) a menu or c) happy customer reviews – before deciding where to eat?”

No one replied “an explanation of how the kitchen works”. Most went for the “happy customer reviews” as a good indication that the restaurant was competent, well regarded and actually had happy customers. But it didn’t let them know whether the type of food on offer was what they were looking for. Perhaps the name of the restaurant gave it away e.g. “The Riverside Tandoori”

Some went for the menu. This allowed them to see if they liked the type of food on offer and to make an evaluation of value (quality / price). But it didn’t let them know if the food was any good, or if the restaurant had received any glowing reviews. Perhaps they wanted to check that what was on offer was within budget and they had something they liked.

Now, why was I asking this question? Well, I’ve recently started working with a couple of new clients and have been looking at their “Company Presentation”. We all know what this is, it’s the presentation that is often given at the first meeting. Most that I have seen are pretty boring. There is often a slide (sometimes the first one) with bullet points like:

  • We were established in 1988
  • We have sites in London, Bristol and Nottingham
  • 28 full-time staff

(Perhaps you even have a presentation like this for your own organisation?)

And in all instances these presentations by my new clients focused on what they offered (the menu) and how good they are at their type of business. One presentation even had 5 slides on “How we do what we do?” (this is how the kitchen works).

<By the way, is there any value at all to a hungry prospect to know that you have been in business since 1988, have three sites and 28 full-time staff? I bet they hear this and are really salivating…>

Often the last slide is a list of companies they have worked for and some quotes about what they have done (happy customer reviews). Sometimes this slide doesn’t even exist!

Menus are important. They are like a brochure and price list. Clearly an important selling document – but would you even be looking at it if it wasn’t for the restaurants reputation, happy customers and glowing critic reviews?

Happy customer reviews (or case studies from the customer’s perspective) are very powerful items in a sales process. So, why leave them to the end of the presentation, or leave them out! And why focus on how you do what you do (explain how the kitchen works) if your customer is hungry and looking for something to eat? I would suggest hungry prospects are not too interested in how many knives you have and how often you sharpen them?

They just want to tuck in!