Build Your Sales Methodology around Buyer Journey, Qualification Criteria
In this blog post I'm going to share with you how and why you should build your sales methodology around buyer journey, qualification criteria.
When it comes to developing a sales methodology there are really two important elements you want to focus on. The first is the buyer journey. The buyer's journey refers to the specific steps that your buyer completes in order to buy your product or service. For example, many IT hiring managers first discover that they have a problem that needs to be resolved (application crashes, lack of data integration, web page can't scale/load) or a goal that needs to be achieved. As a result they research the problem and then they discover they can’t achieve the goal (or resolve the issue) with their current resources. So they start researching potential solutions by reading blogs, articles and white papers. From there the buyer might identify a few solution providers in which case they may put out an RFI or RFP, contact the solution provider directly via phone/email (or download your white paper), pilot a solution, run a beta and/or conduct an ROI analysis before moving forward. These are examples of the steps the buyer takes leading up to and including the purchase of your offering.
By building your sales methodology around the buyer's journey, you will ensure that your salespeople make the buyer’s goals and objectives the focal point of every interaction. By building your sales methodology around the buyer's journey sellers will center their dialog around the needs of the buyer and the information they need in order to advance through each stage of the buyer's journey. Without aligning your sales methodology around the buyer's journey, sellers are likely to launch into a self-serving sales pitch because they lack the context and understanding of how buyers buy. In addition, understanding the buyer's journey will drive and encourage consultative selling.
Once you have defined your buyer's journey and aligned your sales methodology it is time to define your qualification criteria. Your sales methodology needs to be grounded in qualification because it provides the framework for what information the salesperson must capture from their leads or prospects in order to develop a sales pursuit strategy. d determine:
With the Menemsha Group sales methodology we apply qualification criteria at three core levels but it is ultimately up to each organization to decide for themselves what their qualification criteria should be. This is a business decision and depends on a number of factors including your sales strategy, target market and your offering(s) among others. Probably the oldest and most common qualifying methodology however is BANT. BANT stands for:
Authority (to buy)
Need (do they need to buy)
Timing (when will they buy)
This methodology is very rudimentary but it gives you the basic idea and is an easy place to start.
Now that your sales methodology is aligned with the buyer's journey and rooted and qualification criteria you're ready to begin to develop your sales training program including
About Dan Fisher
Dan Fisher is founder and owner of Menemsha Group, a provider of sales enablement solutions dedicated to helping IT staffing firms improve win rates, shorten their sales cycle, and increase revenue per sales rep. Since launching Menemsha Group in 2008, Dan has consulted with over 200 IT staffing firms and has invested over 5000 hours coaching IT staffing sales reps. He’s authored is his own proprietary sales methodology and has previously spoken at Staffing World, TechServe Alliance and Bullhorn Live 2012. Prior to launching Menemsha Group, Dan spent 16 years in the IT industry running local, regional and national sales teams. Dan worked for Kelly Services, Oracle Corporation and Alliance Consulting. Dan currently resides in Boston, Ma.