Overcoming No Decision In The B2B Buying Process, with Jon Perera and Matt Weil, from Highspot, #133
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The B2B buying process is filled with challenges. One of the most frustrating is when a promising sales conversation falls into the “no decision” category. What’s the problem? Is it really a “no decision” situation or is something else going on?
On this episode of the #ModernSelling podcast, I speak with not one, but two guests who work together on the B2B buying process within their company. Their approach is to address the entire buyer process, including the assessment of what’s truly happening in “no decision” situations.
Jon Perera is CMO of Highspot and is responsible for global marketing, demand generation, partner ecosystem, and international expansion for the company. My co-guest is Matt Weil, Vice President of Worldwide Sales for Highspot. On this episode, they pull back the curtain to reveal how they lead the Highspot sales and marketing teams to prevent, correctly assess, and close more of the situations that might typically be called “no decisions." You don’t want to miss this episode!
This episode is brought to you by Gong.io, the number one conversation intelligence platform for sales. Gong helps you achieve revenue success, which means you win more deals, skyrocket rep performance and gain critical market intelligence. Get powerful visibility into your customer conversations with Gong. Head to http://bit.ly/gongio to get started.At Least 22% Of All Sales Opportunities Are Lost Due To No Decision
Statistics don’t lie, but they sometimes fail to tell the whole story. In the case of “no decision” issues, part of the problem is that due to the pressure salespeople feel to demonstrate their sales activity, they are often listing low-probability opportunities into the deal flow.
It’s a systemic problem that needs a systemic solution. One part of the issue is that today's CRMs are not enabling sellers to accurately label/track situations. To deal with that limitation, my guests recommend the following:
- Train your entire team to be very clear about WHAT markers indicate that a deal should be in the funnel in the first place.
- Ensure that everyone is practicing a disciplined approach to categorization when assigning deal stages.
- Educate your team so they can recognize the little wins that indicate progress VS false progress.
Both Jon and Matt say that sales and marketing in most companies need to become better aligned. When this is the case, marketing can do pre-sales work on behalf of sales to warm up the prospect.
- At the top of the funnel, marketing needs to ensure they are helping the prospect recognize a clear need for change in their current situation. This can be aided through thought leadership content or licensed content from an analyst firm that can be shared with prospects.
- The Highspot team conducts buyer interviews on all deals - won, lost, and no decision. Their goal is to discern what happened in each type of deal to bring it to its respective conclusion.
- Insights gleaned above are handed off to the sales enablement team to create resources that will educate the sales team about what’s contributing to no decisions - so those behaviors can be avoided.
It’s not uncommon for sellers to be in promising conversations with buyers only to fail at the most crucial point - they don’t ask for the sale or move the buyer to a “next step.” Closing at each particular stage of the B2B buying process doesn’t always mean that a purchase contract is signed. It means that sellers are moving buyers to the next step in their buyer’s journey successfully.
When the Vengreso team discovered that this is part of the problem with our "no decisions," we got busy training our sellers about this vital responsibility. We also revamped our pitch decks to include a slide near the end with the title “Next Steps?” This communicates to buyers that a next step of some kind is logical and needed. It also reminds our sales team that they must be asking the “next step” question of buyers.Valuable Content Is Key To Moving Buyers Toward Decisions
At Vengreso we’ve championed the PVC Sales Methodology™. The “V” or “value” portion of it is key when it comes to avoiding “no decisions” in the B2B buying process. Buyers must see the value in what we’re offering and the powerful ways our solution can solve their particular problems. Value is primarily communicated through content. It doesn’t matter if it is original or 3rd party content, but it needs to match the buyer persona and stage of the buyer’s journey the prospect is in.
The Highspot team takes a detailed look at buyer personas, industry verticals, and where the buyer is in the buyer’s journey to rightly identify specific content that can be used to move them to a logical next step. This is where analytics and AI scientifically empower those decisions to make a huge difference in avoiding “no decisions” and lost deals.
This episode is full of insights from Jon Perera and Matt Weil about how to keep deals from falling through or falling into the “no-decision” zone. Be sure you listen!
This episode is brought to you by Gong.io, the number one conversation intelligence platform for sales. Gong helps you achieve revenue success, which means you win more deals, skyrocket rep performance and gain critical market intelligence. Get powerful visibility into your customer conversations with Gong. Head to http://bit.ly/gongio to get started.Outline of This Episode
- [6:30] The challenge of “no decision” for modern businesses
- [11:10] The power of sales and marketing being totally aligned and how to do it
- [17:28] How marketing needs to provide sales with what to know, say, and show
- [22:36] Factors that make marketing and sales alignment difficult to achieve
- [26:59] The power of bringing valuable content to the sales conversation
- [35:02] Specific steps sales and marketing leaders can take to overcome no decision
- PVC Sales Methodology™
- Jon Perera on LinkedIn
- Jon on Twitter: @Jon_Perera
- Matt Weil on LinkedIn
- Matt on Twitter:
- CSO Insights
- Modern Marketing Engine Podcast - Bernie Borges