Webinar - Why You Should Let Your Buyer Design Your Sales Process


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“The buyer is in charge” is one of the most popular refrains in contemporary business sales and marketing today. Well it’s true; the Internet has changed buyer behavior forever. In the old days of business sales, the seller controlled the conversation. Now, the Internet has given the power back to the buyer. Marketing has undergone a radical transformation to change their approach to meet the new buyer’s expectations. It’s sales’ turn.

The reality is the buyer views their experience with a vendor as one of the most important factors in buying. When polled, buyers rate their experience with vendors higher than the expected answers of product and price. The sales leader’s imperative is to deliver the sales experience their buyers want and expect.

Craig Rosenberg is in the Chief Analyst for TOPO. TOPO helps organizations optimize their sales and marketing to order to deliver remarkable buying experiences. He has worked with 100’s of sales, inside sales, and marketing organizations to design, build and optimize their processes. He is known to many as the "Funnelholic", the name of his very popular sales and marketing blog.

In this webinar, we provide you with the blueprint and specific use case examples. You will learn:

- Best practices for understanding your buyer
- How the buyer affects your organizational design including people, process and technology
- Specific examples of companies creating buyer-responsive processes
- This discussion is tailored for CEOs, execs, VPs, upper-level management, and anyone involved in sales and overall business strategy.

Published in: Business

Webinar - Why You Should Let Your Buyer Design Your Sales Process

  1. 1. Why You Should Let Your Buyer Design Your Sales Organization Craig Rosenberg blog.topohq.com @funnelholic TOPO
  2. 2. “The best sales leaders understand that they have to have the right people, the right behaviors, the right technology, the right coaching and infrastructure to be able to sell how their customers want to buy” Dave Stein TOPO
  3. 3. “Sophisticated customers are not interested in traditional sales models. They demand faster, more seamless, and even enjoyable sales experiences.” Homayoun Hatami, McKinsey TOPO
  4. 4. Sales Leaders who adopt a buyer-centric sales philosophy are thriving: • Exceed their revenue goals: 150% of quota • Job security: 3-4 year job cycles Sales Benchmark Index TOPO
  5. 5. “Companies that provide great buying experiences grow >2X faster than companies that provide average experiences” TOPO TOPO
  6. 6. Understand the Buyer and the Buying Process Image by wilgengebroed TOPO
  7. 7. Truly understand the buyer © 2013 TOPO Buyer Demographics 1. Who are you personally (married, children, etc)? 2. What’s your background and career path? 3. How long have you been at your current job? 4. What industry is your company in? 5. How many employees does your company have? Buyer Role 6. What is your role in the organization? 7. What is your title? 8. What are your responsibilities? 9. What skills do you possess? 10. Who are you accountable to? 11. What does your team look like? Buyer Psychology 12. What are you most excited about at work? 13. What are your main opportunities (biggest)? 14. What are your main challenges (biggest)? 15. Do you like to make things happen? 16. What motivates you to make something happen? 17. What defines success in your role? 18. Are you optimistic or pessimistic about work? Day in the Life 19. What does a typical day look like? 20. How would you describe your work environment? 21. What obstacles do you commonly encounter? 22. Who do you interact with the most? 23. What’s your preferred mode of communication? 24. What tools do you use at work? 25. How do you gather information to make decisions? Purchasing Decisions 26. How would you describe the way you buy products? 27. What are the major phases of a purchasing process? 28. What’s an example of a purchase you recently made? 29. Who is responsible for purchasing decisions? 30. Who influences purchasing decisions? 31. What causes you to begin a purchasing process? 32. What criteria do you use to evaluate products? 33. What causes you to purchase a product? 34. What causes you to purchase one product over another? 35. Is product, price, or service more important? 36. How long does it take to make a purchase? 37. What information is valuable to you during a purchase? 38. How do you prefer to consume that information? 39. How do you prefer to interact with vendors? 40. How can vendors help you the most? TOPO
  8. 8. Demographics Gemma Hodge, Office Manager 25 year old millennial Works at 30 person CAD engineering firm Likes her job and the CEO, but it’s only a job Buyer Role Does a lot of different things at the office Primary role as office administrator Also acts as CEO’s admin Spends time on accounting and HR stuff as well Helps CEO with special, tactical projects Has experience buying mission critical technology Psychology Really likes her job But it’s not what defines her – she has a life Still takes immense pride in her work Wants to do the best she can within work hours Feels like the CEO really depends on her Values personal support she provides to him Day in the Life Office admin activities take up a lot of time Also spends time on bookkeeping and HR Can get buried with accounting some times Is on call to support CEO whenever required When assigned a project, spends a lot of time on it Takes work hours very literally Does not take work home with her Purchasing Is not the ultimate decision-maker Plays support role to CEO/management She does have strong influence over decision Triggered by service outage, big bill, K expiration Question 1 – is service reliable? Question 2 – how big will the bill be? Question 3 – how long will it take to get going? Gathers facts and presents to CEO Comparison shopping is important to her Needs simple service level guarantee Needs to present workable economics to CEO Needs process to be straightforward and easy Values straightforward, responsive salespeople Small Business Office Manager TOPO
  9. 9. Awareness Consideration Purchase Phase Identification Requirements Comparison Shortlist Negotiate Purchase Objective Identify problem or opportunity requiring attention Understand requirements and business case Find products that can meet requirements Shortlist products that meet requirements Negotiate best terms for product, price, and support Purchase product and quickly move to rollout Key Activities Managing business Event or trigger occurs Problem or opportunity ID Decide to pursue issue Identify stake- holders Gather requirements Formalize requirements Develop business case Understand solution universe Evaluate universe of products Focus on product, price, support Refine requirements Develop shortlist of options Conduct detailed evaluation Deep dive on product, price, support Develop initial recommendation Make final recommendation Create deal “strawman” Negotiate key terms Submit for internal approval Make final purchase decision Execute signed agreement Move to rollout/ implementation Information Consumed General information Market Information Stakeholder input Analyst research Whitepapers Peer input Product sheets Videos Demo Demo Trial References Business case Contract Contract Rollout plan Communication Used Internal collaboration Internet Internal collaboration Internet Email Internet Phone Phone Email Internet Phone Email Phone Email Move to Next Phase When… Problem/ opp identifed Final requirements and business case Shortlist completed Comparison completed Material terms negotiated Agreement executed Map the Buying Process TOPO
  10. 10. “Evaluate and assess how the selling process overlaps with the buying process. If an organization finds that 60 percent of the sales process maps to the buying process, then the other 40 percent is a gap that needs to be addressed.” Dave Stein Photo by Brendan Lynch TOPO
  11. 11. Phases of the Inside Sales Process Buying Stages Problem Identification Understand Requirements Compare Vendors Shortlist Vendors Negotiation Purchase Decision Sales Stage Approach Qualify, Agree on Need, Sell XO Presentation Refine Negotiation Close Description Approach buyer with goal of setting meeting Gather requirements; agree on solution Present first proposal; set next meeting Present final solution based on feedback Negotiate key terms; enter order Executed SOA and paperwork received Factor 1% 10% 25% 50% 75% 90% TOPO
  12. 12. Buyer-Centric Sales Plays TOPO
  13. 13. Awareness Issue/Question Why do I need this product? Messaging Soundbyte(s) “Buyers prefer to consume content then listen to a sales person” “Legacy selling approaches are not as effective today? Sales Play Focus on the problem Understand current environment Deliver “Changing Buyer” preso Send Ultimate Guide to Content Selling Content The Changing Buyer (Preso) The Ultimate Guide to Content Selling (Preso) Process Next Step -Identify persona in CRM for nurturing -Set Follow Prospect advances when They identify there is a problem Build Plays for Each Buying Step TOPO
  14. 14. Design buyer-responsive plays Buyer Stage Buyer Activity Status Quo Understand Requirements/ Options Engage Vendor(s) Identify Problem/Opportu nity Make Decision/Purchase 1personsupportorg UsingGmail/GoogleDocs Workloadgrowingfast Numberofticketsgrowing 2peoplenowworkingsupport Newemployeenotself-sufficient Twopersonworkflowisissue Newemployeeneedstosolve CollectsbasicinfousingGoogle Talkstopeers–valuesthis Corefeaturesidentified Gatherspricingdata Focusesoneaseofuse Developsvendorshortlist Createsvendorevaluationplan Visitsleadingvendor’ssite Signsupfortrial Justneedsittowork Startsusingtrial Noothertrials Takescall/emailfromsales Abletosatisfycoreusecase Takes2ndcallfromsales Buyerdecidestopurchase Enterscreditcardinfo Buyerbecomescustomer Play Provide primary contact with champion content that allows contact to guide, influence, and dictate internal meeting 1 27 Internalmeetingon finaldecision Details Champion content is a toolkit that provides buyers with short preso, talking points, and due diligence checklist to show all work that’s been done as part of eval Why CEO will make final decision, but has not been engaged thus far – need to arm primary contact with tools to get CEO over finish line Owner Marketing owns creation of content; inside sales owns delivery/training Champion Content Play © 2013 TOPO TOPO
  15. 15. Buyer-Centric Messaging Design Photo by Todd Hansen TOPO
  16. 16. Messaging Design Industry/ Persona Challenges Solution Benefits Company Persona #1 Persona #2 Persona #3 Persona Based Messaging TOPO
  17. 17. Content Design Image by 10ch TOPO
  18. 18. "In the future, a great piece of content will out-sell the average sales rep.” Greg Alexander, Sales Benchmark Index Image by TexasEagle TOPO
  19. 19. Sales Stage Approach Qualify, Agree on Need, Presentation Refine Negotiation Close Buying Stage Problem Identification Understand Requirements Compare Vendors Shortlist Vendors Negotiation Purchase Decision Persona #1 • Changing Buyer • Content Selling 101 Persona #2 • Executive’s guide to Content Selling • 10 Habits of Top Sales Leaders Content mapping happens here Content and Sales Process Mapping TOPO
  20. 20. Organizational Design Image by Marcel Douwe Dekker TOPO
  21. 21. “The key for sales leaders is to look at the buyer variables that will impact their ability to be successful. How do their buyers want to buy? Do their buyers utilize online resources to educate themselves? Do their buyers feel comfortable communicating over phone or email? Can their buyers be educated over phone or online?” Trish Bertuzzi, The Bridge Group Inc TOPO
  22. 22. Hiring Design Image by Justin Cormack TOPO
  23. 23. “We…literally need to convince prospects to turn their sales and marketing process on its head. To do so… Sales reps need to be sophisticated enough…[Based on this criteria} we started off by writing down a set of attributes that we thought would be important, and used these during interviews to evaluate candidate” TOPO
  24. 24. The Hiring Profile/Scorecard TOPO
  25. 25. Technology TOPO
  26. 26. TOPO
  27. 27. The Social Selling Question TOPO
  28. 28. Questions? TOPO © 2013 TOPO blog.topohq.com @funnelholic We design and deliver remarkable buying experiences