An Intro to a Product-Led Sales Motion

Neil Mclean
October 27, 2021

Typically, SaaS sales and marketing teams spend an incredible amount of their time telling prospects what software can do instead of showing them what it can do.

That’s the sales-led go-to-market strategy in brief. The general idea is to build a great product, market it to qualified leads, pass prospects along to salespersons, and then expound on the product’s benefits and value propositions further.

But product-led selling takes a different angle on nurturing inbound leads at scale and optimizing outbound outreach.

After all, there’s no substitute for letting prospects get their hands on a product before buying.

It’s a time-honored tactic in the automobile industry that’s now becoming more widely accepted for software sales because it’s so wildly effective at qualifying leads and shortening the sales cycle overall.

A product-led sales methodology gives new SaaS companies a much greater opportunity to scale revenue growth significantly faster – and at a better price point in the end.

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What’s a product-led sales motion?

Simply put, a product-led sales motion prioritizes the customer’s real-world experience with software so that they can experience it first-hand earlier in the sales cycle without any friction.

Previously, these types of product-led marketing tactics essentially boiled down to different versions of the freemium model, where a user must upgrade to unlock the full version of the product.

What’s different today is there are alternative options for SaaS companies that may not have the engineering resources to build a freemium or free trial.

How is product-led sales different from previous ways of selling?

At their core, product-led sales address customers’ growing desire to control their interactions with a product, rather than waiting on a salesperson to explain the obvious to them.

In the past, a sales-led selling motion required that a salesperson help the customer navigate the purchasing experience, yet a product-led selling motion empowers the customer instead.

The customer’s initial focus will be on extracting value from the software before deciding whether or not to buy, effectively selling themselves on a product without a salesperson’s nurturing.

How can a SaaS company best transition to product-led sales?

Prioritizing the end-user in the sales cycle is vital to building strong, long-lasting business relationships with customers and winning deals in the end.

By transitioning to a product-led mindset, SaaS sales and marketing teams can position their companies to scale rapidly in large markets when traditional sales processes would hinder the pace of progress.

But building a product-led sales motion doesn’t have to take months with options such as product videos or interactive product demos.

How do interactive demos fit into product-led sales?

Interactive demos are prime examples of how to jump-start product-led growth, without needing an engineering team to custom build a new version of your application.

An interactive demo is a code-free way to guide a user through a front-end version of your application. This way the user gets to experience using the application, but the company doesn’t have to create a custom demo environment, freemium, or free trial. The key to a successful product demo is that their experience with the demo must coincide with the value they would get using the software’s full version.

An online interactive demo is an excellent tool to make this new product-led sales process repeatable. One tactic would be to include product tours on the company’s website to qualify leads or book smaller micro demos via outbound campaigns to re-engage and remind prospects of how easy it is to use the software.

Website demos can also lead to a more efficient sales cycle. After viewing an interactive demo – prospects will already know about the software before contacting a sales rep, which should ideally make it easier to see where they still have objections.

The result is that it won’t be necessary to schedule demos weeks or months down the line only to have the process go awry when the customer chooses a competitor with a smoother sales process.

See what a product-led sales motion looks like in one of our interactive product demos!

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