Gap Selling in Practice: Technical Problems vs. Business Problems

Gap Selling is hard. Like really hard. But when you do it right, it’s extremely powerful.

I hear all the time “It’s easy to understand the concepts, but hard to master.”

But that’s kind of the point of sales, isn’t it?Gap Selling in Practice Tip #1

At least for me it is.

Anyways, as someone who has been practicing Gap Selling every single day for the last 365 days, and as someone who recognizes there’s always room for improvement, I’m going to start giving some actionable tips that you can start implementing in your day to day immediately.

Every single “tip” (for lack of a better term), will come from my experience using the methodology to well, sell the methodology.

It’ll include a brief definition of a concept, why it’s important, and how you can apply it.

My goal is to help those who are familiar with Gap to implement it more effectively, and to reach those who’ve never heard of it before, but know there’s a better way to sell in today’s age.

This’ll be the longest post, because it’s the explanation nobody asked for 😉  but let’s get into it.

Gap Selling Tip #1:

Concept: Understanding the difference between technical problems, business problems, and business impacts, and being agile in your Problem Identification Chart (PIC).


A technical problem is what causes the business problem, but it’s not what drives the motivation for change (read: buying).

Most sellers stop digging in once they find a “pain.” They get happy ears and think they have the sale because “their manual processes are inefficient!”

But this is a technical problem. There’s a layer deeper to the inefficient process. There’s a reason the person is taking a call with you. And it sure as shit is not because they’re spending too much time doing something.

Real Application Example:

P: “Our sellers aren’t doing a very deep discovery.” < Prospect mentions a technical problem that we solve for

C: “Typically we see that manifest in a low close rate, reliance on discounting, extending sales cycles, etc.. Do you think because your sellers aren’t doing a deep discovery it’s showing up in one of these areas or somewhere else?” <I know the most common business problems that occur as a result of this technical problem, and I immediately guide the conversation here.

We’ll go into where the convo typically goes from here, but this is the second step to digging a layer deeper in your discovery.

The first is actually understanding what business problems you solve – but don’t worry, we’ll get into how to do that later too.

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