Buying Rooms are like Treasure Chests
by Ton Verleg
What does the Buying Room of your dream opportunity look like? How many stakeholders does it have? What is their role, and for what function? Who is influencing who, and where are they on the Buying clock? What insightful information will you share? How will you progress the opportunity? These are great coaching questions, and your Buying Room is central to the answers.
A well-maintained Buying Room should help you decide on your next steps. The more you know about the involved stakeholders and what’s happening between them, the greater your chances of finding the key to the treasure chest.
Traditionally we have been too focused on:
- Getting an introduction to a decision-maker,
- Listening for buying signals,
- Preparing a proposal and
- Hopefully, closing the deal.
Well, hope is not getting us anywhere these days. In the new way of selling, you need to meet with multiple stakeholders (in smaller meetings) driving consensus on change – before it comes to a decision stage. The number of stakeholders at SMEs is growing from 2 to 6, and at bigger companies, their buying room can be 8 to 12 or even more. It’s time to map the Buying Room, so it gives you the overview you need and helps you decide who to meet with next. It even should give you ideas of the objective of the meeting, the insights you want to share and the commitments you want to get out of it.
To advance your opportunity, you need to have Customer and Stakeholder Situational Knowledge:
- What is their current situation?
- What are the main priorities of the company?
- What are they trying to achieve?
- What is their strategy, and how well does it work?
- What ideas have been discussed so far?
- Are all stakeholders in Why Change?
- Who is a possible Change champion?
- Who is a Hidden Competitor? And why?
- What do they all have in common?
Again, great coaching questions where the Buying Room can unlock most of the answers. To open your treasure chest, imagine it has a three-letter code:
- S = Stakeholders. Who is involved, and when did you last meet with each of them?
- B = Buying Clock. Find out where the main stakeholders are in their buying process. Why Change? Change to What? Change to Who? or Commit to Change.
- W =Willingness to change. Decide who likes your ideas (Allies), who doesn’t like what you bring to the table yet (Opposers), who will influence other Stakeholders without you (Champions) and who is neutral to whatever is decided (Neutral)
This three-letter code SBW reveals the secrets of your treasure chest. Good luck with finding your treasures!Tags: Ton Verleg