A colleague recently said he was waiting for a deal to close. How did he know it would close? I asked. “Because someone contacted me, and we’ve had several discussions. In our last chat we discussed price.”
SDM: What percentage of the buying decision team does your prospect represent?
A: There are only 4 people on the team, so 25 per cent.
SDM: Any influencers?
A: I have no idea.
SDM: Where is he along his buy path? Stage 3 where one person does preliminary research? Stage 8 where decision team members choose between an external resource or an internal workaround? Or Stage 11 when they are choosing best solutions?
A: No idea.
SDM: What did your conversations consist of?
A: Explanations about our services and how they could alleviate the problem. I gave him some pitches after understanding their needs.
SDM: Are they still considering a workaround and contacted you to merely compare your information to their other research on workarounds vs. purchase?
A: No idea.
SDM: Did you help him figure out how to manage any people or policy fallout they’d suffer when purchasing an external solution?
A: No. But I explained to them why my solution would be best. I suppose there’s some change management they’ll have to do, but they always figure it out.
And, to date, no closed sale.
My colleague assumes he will sell because the prospect called him with a ‘need’ (No, he called for information.) and they spoke several times (Just gathering information to compare options, bring data to meetings, etc). Indeed, unless the buyers hear from everyone who touches a solution, get consensus, compare a workaround against a purchase, and make sure any change issues are handled, they can’t buy. My friend discussed his solution too soon and was out of control.
The sales model handles solution placement – the very last thing buyers do. Using Buying Facilitation® before selling will either eliminate or create a prospect. And you’ll know when/who you will close.
Call me to teach you Buying Facilitation® to add to what you are already doing successfully. It’s not a sales model but a decision facilitation skill set, and it works with any size solution. Sharondrew@sharondrewmorgen.com or www.buyingfacilitation.com