Thoughts on sales demos

■ Have you ever pondered who decided the length of your sales demo?

■ How did they arrive at how much long the demo should be?

■ Why is a demo always a multiple of 30mins?

Surprisingly demo lengths in most orgs would not be scientifically arrived at. It would in all probability be an hour long demo if the product is not super-complicated like a CPQ or an ERP solution.


Now does the demo needs to be an hour long? That’s something hardly anybody in the org. would have pondered upon.

How many times have you seen a new rep on your team come ask: “Dude! Why is the demo 60mins long? I can do it in 20mins and take Q&A in another 15.” It almost never happens.

Coz we take for granted on what is given to us and so on and so forth it goes without ever revisiting for the longest time.

When a sales rep decides a demo, she is thinking from her product POV on how long will she need to showcase it and account for Q&A. She wants to deliver the value NOW and deliver it all and in one go.


That is a bad idea if the demo is gonna be long. Coz what is the point of a demo if your prospect cannot recall important points from it later on?

Suppose your demo is a 60mins long and scheduled after lunch in the afternoon. How do you expect the prospect to pay attention when they just came back from a sumptuous lunch and have their video turned off coz they don’t want to be seen yawning🥱😅


What could you do differently?

■ Question how long does the demo really need to be. Back it scientifically, tearing down the minutes of meetings from the past to arrive at it.

■ Design the demo not as one long monologue from you but accounting for an interaction every 2.5minutes (suggested).

Remember human attention spans are fickle. More fickle in a world where someone can shut you off from their attention by just clicking “turn off video”. You are really fighting against your prospect’s urge to do that!

■ If a demo takes longer than an hour (all inclusive of Q&A), you would want to break it into two. Ideally the very next day so your prospects don’t need a lot of recapping from last demo

■ Per Gong’s research the frequency of questions increases by 36% in the second half of demos on won deals. The inverse is true of lost deals – a visible drop in interactions. More interactions the better.


■ The last one: try breaking the demo lengths from multiples of 30mins. An hour long demo could be made 55min long. 4PM-5PM demo is long. 3:45PM-4:40PM seems not that long coz of the way our brains are wired.

■ Avoid demoing in the afternoons. Yawns after lunch won’t help. Best demo slots are before lunch and after evening coffee

Happy Selling!🍻

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