Five best practices for creating successful Proof of Concepts (POC) and Proof of Values (POV):

Published on: May 7th, 2021
Proof of concept & Proof of value best practices

In order to bring a Proof of Concept to fruition, it is important to have a clear understanding of exactly what a POC should encompass and convey to your customer. However, when working with enterprise customers, this is even more crucial. 

At Proof of Concept Management Platform provider Success, we have seen a pattern emerge from the 100s of successful POCs managed by our customers. The pattern is pretty simple, it is just a religious application of few best practices.

Here we will share 5 such best practices, following them can lead you to tremendous results for sure.

1. Having intelligible communication between internal teams.

Communication is like oxygen to a company. Especially when it comes to technical product evaluation, it’s vital for internal teams to collaborate and create something of value for the people who will be using it on a daily basis. When teams communicate well with each other, the final product is smoother, more efficient, and less prone to errors.

So you need to have a common space where all your internal teams can collaborate and be on the same page in conveying a message to customers. 

2. Understanding the needs of customers at the initial stage.

Your product or service doesn’t work in a bubble — it has to exist in the sphere of your customers’ lives. Businesses are built on relationships between merchants, their clients, and their products — brands need to be cognizant of how their offerings fit into the context of the lives of their consumers or risk losing them to more nimble competitors. Know your customer better before trying to sell your product with a sales pitch.

Have a perfect thesis of your product and make an agreement with the customer on the same upfront.

3. Defining the timelines and achieving them on time.

In the previous two points, we discussed the communication internally within teams and with the customer. Now it is high time to discuss the impact of deadlines. 

Before committing to any details for the customer, double-check them with your team and commit to the tightest delivery date you can manage. It’s always better to underpromise and overdeliver than to overcommit and underperform.

Defining deadlines and technically evaluating the product is given the least importance by most companies. In reality, this is the key to close a deal.

4. Accepting the feedback from customers and reverting them to a solution.

Feedback drives product improvement. When customers notice flaws in your products, they have the opportunity to improve them. The more you know about what they want, the more you can provide for it.

Some people have a tendency to speak before thinking and that’s why we need good customer service to make sure any issue is fixed immediately.

5. Analyzing each step throughout the process with proper insights and metrics.

A blind faith never works. Without measuring the process at each step of the creation of POCs, you’re not going to see how well you’re doing. Sales engineering metrics are crucial in measuring the success of a process, and analytics tools are needed to track the data over time.

You need a dashboard that can sum up all the activities each team is working on along with customer feedback to create winning POCs.

Try to follow all the above best practices and share your results with us, we will be more than happy to embed your views and results in the coming knowledge-sharing articles.

Tip for dealing with Enterprise clients:

When you’re reaching out to enterprise companies, it’s incumbent on the company to be fully in sync with their sales cycle. It’s important to take inventory of what is expected of your custom solution. You should arrive at the scope statement to ensure it aligns with the established parameters and milestones already given to you by Enterprise buyers.

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