Buying Decision Teams are your real prospects. They 1. provide the consensus and change management that must be addressed before a purchase; 2. coordinate the details of a need to include each voice involved with a new solution. Without the whole Team assembled, we’re merely hoping we’ve got a prospect, regardless of how targeted our social or content marketing efforts.
Comprised of any number of people – friends, colleagues, family, business partners – Buying Decision Teams offer ideas, agreement, arguments, and a forum to uncover the full complement of needs.
We buy new home computers by asking friends (the Buying Decision Team) for recommendations; we buy new software for our company when users – technology, marketing, user groups (the Buying Decision Team) – define their critical criteria for a solution choice and agree on an implementation plan. A lone buyer, with no agreement from Buying Decision Team members, doesn’t spontaneously purchase a large CRM system and then announce: “Guess what everyone! I’ve just bought a new CRM! Reorganize your schedules for the next 18 months while we implement.”
A buying decision is not a whim. Whether you’re making a small personal purchase with one Buying Decision Team member, or a complicated purchase with several department heads, a buying decision is a change management problem; everyone who will touch the solution needs to have their voices included to define the need and address any change before buying.
In social marketing or sales, when we merely listen for ways to place our solutions, or assume our contact is the only voice of the buyer, we are missing the full extent of the power of the possible: not only are we limiting our understanding of the full scope of the need, we are missing opportunities to facilitate change and discovery and become real Relationship Managers.
Part of every sales, marketing, and social effort should include facilitating our contacts in assembling their complete Buying Decision Team – not always obvious, as they sometimes include unexpected stakeholders.
I’ve worked with Buying Decision Teams of 2 (I taught Century 21 realtors to facilitate buying decisions between couples), and 40 (I taught senior partners at KPMG to facilitate global decision makers for a $50,000,000 solution). Contact me and we’ll figure out if facilitating the assembly of the Buying Decision Team – using content marketing, sales, or social – would enhance your business.