Have you ever wondered why the person or client you are speaking to is not responding or reacting to your proposals or recommendations in a positive manner?
Ever wonder why you cannot seem to get energy, excitement, enthusiasm or buy-in around your ideas or recommendations? Well don’t feel like you are the only person that this happens to. It is normal in the process of qualifying a contact, from casual communication into a viable ideal prospect for your product or services.
What if you could determine fairly early in a conversation or engagement conversation, with a prospective client, if they were really your very best, ideal buyer? What could that mean to your planning, projections, activity levels and results? How different could your business be? How much easier could it be to manage the relationships with your very best opportunities?
Let me share with you a concept called The Best Buyer Concept:
There are always a smaller number of ideal buyers, rather than all buyers, so ideal buyers are cheaper to market to, sometimes more difficult to find, and yet bring greater rewards.
If you sell B2B, it’s usually fairly clear that your best buyers are medium to large companies. So what are you doing, every other week, no matter what, to let these companies know who you are? There’s no one you can’t get to as long as you constantly market to them, especially after they say they’re not interested in what you have to offer. People will not only begin to respect your perseverance, they will actually begin to feel obligated to listen to you. This is one of the Six Ethical persuasion principles of influence (consistency), by Dr. Robert Cialdini in his book Influence: Science and Practice (5th Edition)
Let me show you an approach, called the Client Response Modes, that will help you to better sort through your business opportunities. Remember that people buy when, and only when they perceive a discrepancy between reality and their desired results. There exists a gap and then your opportunity is to uncover it and address it through your products and services.
Here are some categories of distinctions to consider when discussing your products and/or services and your value proposition. Is the business/owner in
Growth mode, Trouble mode, Even Keel or Overconfident. This is framework to us better understand the readiness of a potential client to take action NOW.
In the first response mode the prospective client communicates that they are interested in GROWTH. This is in response to the question that asks about their current satisfaction and growth trajectory for their business in whatever manner they choose to measure GROWTH. A buyer in Growth mode is always ready to say yes to somebody’s proposal … though not necessarily yours. Your challenge is to get the prospective client (your ideal buyer) to reach a level of comfort with you, your company, and your solutions as quickly as possible, but not in a hurried manner.
The second response mode is person, business, organization or department is in TROUBLE. The probability of action being taken is high when a buying influence or a decision maker is in TROUBLE.
They are comfortable to acknowledge that they have a performance gap, and seeking assistance and support NOW! He/she is eager to buy … but once again not necessarily from you. TROUBLE always takes precedence over GROWTH. This doesn’t mean that growth is unimportant, only that a buyer who is feeling pain, doing more and or better can wait until you’ve fixed the cause of the pain. Selling GROWTH to a buyer who feels in TROUBLE is like selling a new roof to a farmer whose barn has just caught fire. Even if the barn needs a roof, it doesn’t need one now. So urgency and timing take precedence.
The third response mode is EVENKEEL. To someone or an organization in EVENKEEL, your proposals or recommends can be seen as a threat; as potentially rocking the boat. The EVENKEEL environment will change only when there is change of view, to the fact that GROWTH or TROUBLE are recognized as forthcoming. The other consideration for looking at change is that as their trusted advisor you have illustrated the gaps between where they are and where they wish to go.
The fourth response mode is OVERCONFIDENT. This is the most difficult response mode to sell to. The OVERCONFIDENT see’s no reason for change, since they are pretty delighted and sometimes surprised by their own or organizational results. You will encounter strong resistance and denial, because their view of their circumstances is not congruent nor consistent with yours. You may not be able to overcome this viewpoint unless there are organizational changes or challenges in the workplace or economy that affect the business. The prospective client must experience these four thought processes/emotions before they are comfortable moving forward.
- Denial : of the current business
- Resistance : of the analysis of the current state of the
- Exploration : a willingness to explore other options to address the business
- Acceptance : adoption of proposed solutions and finding a new
That pretty much covers that most effective ways that I have experienced in deciding who the most promising opportunities for you services or products may be.
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Miguel A. de Jesùs
Founder & CEO Purpose & Action, LLC
Website: Coach Miguel