“Because you have well-positioned your team and your solution upfront, your organization has a much higher probability of becoming the chosen candidate.” – DJ Sebastian in today’s Tip 1014
How do you help your customers buy?
Join the conversation below and share your thoughts!
Have feedback? Want to share a sales tip? Call or text the Sales Success Hotline: 512-777-1442 or Email: [email protected]
Scott Ingram: You’re listening to the Daily Sales Tips podcast and I’m your host, Scott Ingram. Today’s tip comes from DJ Sebastian. As a top-producing sales executive for some of the best technology corporations, DJ learned that to become great at selling, you must be a great communicator. Now, as a sales coach and author, DJ’s mission is to help the next-generation B2B sales professionals become elite sellers. Here he is:
DJ Sebastian: Elite sales professionals and their sales teams do everything they can to control all aspects of the sales cycle. But you still need to realize that the customers will buy on their timeline, not yours, because in the typical buying process, the customer is in control. They dictate the steps and they define the rules of engagement. In this customer-driven process, candidates who choose to bid on an opportunity are often forced to comply with a rigorous set of rules that include limiting the level of communication with the customer.
In these cases, customers may have done some research on the available alternatives, and they generally know what they want. The steps they need to receive proposals, evaluate, select, and then negotiate with their chosen candidate. Sometimes, salespeople in an attempt to speed the process, are attempted to throw in a special discount that is effective until a month-end or quarter-end date, but that’s an artificial deadline imposed by the sales team.
If the customer is not ready to buy, the deal will not advance to a purchase. Every customer knows that the “Special discount” is a desperate tactic, and most will ask for the same discount after your fake deadline expires as it fits their real schedule. This type of buying process does not help you as a sales professional. You will be captive to a process you did not choose but must follow in order to compete. If you’re unable to influence the steps and the level of customer engagement, your chance of winning is significantly reduced. All other things being equal. If you are hearing about an opportunity after the process and the requirements have already been established, you’re probably being set up by your competitor. When you blindly follow the customer’s buying process. When you are on the outside looking in, you will lose the majority of those deals.
Now, here’s a better way to help your customers buy. A much better approach is to strive early on to integrate your organization’s selling process with your customers buying process. This is a proactive approach where your sales team initiates the process, works collaboratively with your customer to determine the requirements, identify key issues that can be resolved, and formulates a proposal focused on the business value that can be generated from this initiative.
The major steps in the integrated selling buying process are these.
First, collaborate with the customer on the steps, the vision, and the proof points.
Second, conduct discovery sessions to mutually determine requirements with the customer.
Third, process focused on generating business value.
This process positions you as a partner, not just a vendor, and increases your chance of winning. With this integrated process, you initiate an opportunity where the customer has not already settled on a solution. It does take a little more work, but it can be well worth it. Instead of passively reacting to each customer’s desire, especially when the customer might not even understand what capabilities are available in your marketplace.
You can set the bar, establish yourself and your team as a proactive advisor, and highlight the unique capabilities of your solution. All before your competitors even know about this initiative. Because you have well-positioned your team and your solution upfront, your organization has a much higher probability of becoming the chosen candidate.
Once you’ve done that. Be sure to come back tomorrow for another great sales tip. Thanks for listening!