Facilitating Success, One Decision At A Time

Sharon Drew Morgen

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Is Your Follow Up Effective?

confused-customerDo you attempt to follow up with prospective buyers because they haven’t contacted you when you thought they should? Do you know what is stopping them from contacting you? Or where they are along their decision path – their steps from idea to consensus, from change to choice, that buyers must address – while we sit and wait, hoping they’ll close?

With a focus on understanding need and placing solutions, you may have no idea what stage they are at: did you originally connect when they were first considering possibly fixing something? Or when they were comparing your solution to an internal workaround or their favorite vendor? Were they just seeking information to share at a planning session?

The very last thing buyers seek is your solution, regardless of whether they have a need or not: they seek to solve a problem, and will purchase your solution only if their known vendors and internal workarounds won’t work, and if there is consensus.

Price is not the issue. Competition with other providers is not the problem. The problem is how they will manage the internal change your solution incurs (separate from the benefits of your solution). If you want to facilitate their decision making, call with these questions:

What would you and your decision team need to know to understand and manage the types of change that would be required by purchasing our solution?

How will you and the decision team know that an external solution might be more effective and efficient than an internal workaround?

We tend to think buyers merely need to choose a solution, yet they need buy in and change management before they can make proper use of our solution information. Have they assembled all of the right players? Are they first attempting an internal workaround? Assume when you haven’t heard from them they are still figuring things out. Use your follow up contact to help them figure out what they need to resolve so they can buy. Or even better, begin your connection with them by helping them first facilitate their systemic change, and then sell.

I can help you facilitate the decision path with Buying Facilitation® that works with sales to manage the hidden factors we’ve not been privy to until now.Sharondrew@sharondrewmorgen.com or www.buyingfacilitation.com

Is Your Follow Up Effective? is a post from: SharonDrewMorgen.com

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Sharon Drew Morgen is the visionary and thought leader behind Buying Facilitation® the new sales paradigm that focuses on helping buyers manage their buying decision. She is the author of the NYTimes Business Bestseller Selling with Integrity as well as 5 other books and hundreds of articles that explain different aspects of the decision facilitation model that teaches buyers how to buy.

Morgen dramatically shifts the buying decision tools from solution-focused to decision-support. Sales very competently manages the solution placement end of the decision, yet buyers have been left on their own while sellers are left waiting for a response, and hoping they can close. But no longer: Morgen actually gives sellers the tools to lead buyers through all of their internal, idiosyncratic decisions.

Morgen teaches Buying Facilitation® to global corporations, and she licenses the material with training companies seeking to add new skills to what they are already offering their clients. She has a new book coming out October 15, 2009 called Dirty Little Secrets: why buyers can’t buy and sellers can’t sell and what you can do about it which defines what is happening within buyer’s cultures (systems) and explains how they make the decisions they make.

Morgen has focused on the servant-leader/decision facilitation aspect of sales since her first book came out in 1992, called Sales On The Line.
In all of her books, she unmasks the behind-the-scenes decisions that need to go on before buyers choose a solution, and gives sellers the tools to aid them.

In addition, Morgen changes the success rate of sales from the accepted 10% to 40%: the time it takes buyers to come up with their own answers is the length of the sales cycle, and her books – especially Dirty Little Secrets – teaches sellers how to guide the buyers through to all of their decisions, thereby shifting the sales cycle from a failed model that only manages half of the buying cycle, to a very competent Professional skill set.

Morgen lives in Austin TX, where she dances and works with children’s fund raising projects in her spare time.