4 Main Reasons Why Sellers Lose Deals (III) Blog Feature
Molly D Protosow

By: Molly D Protosow on March 25th, 2013

Print/Save as PDF

4 Main Reasons Why Sellers Lose Deals (III)

selling | Sales Tips | networking | Sales Training | competitive | buying process | strategy | Objection Handling

There are 4 main reasons on why sellers lose deals that they’ve invested their precious time in.  They are the following:

  1. No outreach was made prior to the issuance of the RFP/ Tender.
  2. Lack of understanding in the role your contact plays within the buying process.
  3.  ***Lack of initiative in gathering insight on the buyer’s history and thought process.***
  4. Failure to provide a very concise picture of how the solution you provide solves his or her problem.

In previous installments, we looked at parts 1 and 2.  This morning, we will look at the importance of as well as the strategy for figuring out the real buying process.

3.  Lack of initiative in gathering insight on the buyer’s history and thought process. - Ignore previous buying patterns at your own peril.  It is not enough to ask your prospect, “Who did you buy from the last time?”  If we could go back in time, we’d learn that long ago your prospect was not buying from anyone.  Then, something changed and as a result they are now buyers.  You need to explore that conversation in order to learn how that prospect thinks, how they gain information, how they like to make decisions and who they put in the lead of finding vendors that sell solutions worth buying.  Early on in every first meeting, the seller should ask, “Has your company bought this kind of offering before? How’d you do it last time? Why did you do that way?” (Or words to that effect). What you are really trying to learn is: why have you not already bought from us? You want to learn your contact’s part in past buying decisions as well as others involved.  If you go down that conversational path, you will learn the considerations that went into that decision and the decision criteria they used.  Don’t ignore previous buying patterns – that is, don’t fail to explore how they’ve bought similar services in the past and simply skip to the suggestion of how and why they should buy from you.  You don’t want to be perceived as a pushy salesperson – a pushy salesperson is defined as a person who ignores the customer’s buying patterns and preferences. 


The real challenge comes about when you realize that they’ve never purchased a similar service.  Here is another food-for-thought: what if the current cast of characters (the current employees) has not bought this service before at this company?  Have they bought it before in previous companies? Who did they select back then? How’d they arrive at that decision last time? If there is no history, they may need a path… and the seller can provide that ROI+ path, but only if they take a leadership position and boldly suggest  - and then negotiate - a reasonable way to make a decision on a solution.  In that case, the seller needs to help the buyer agree on empirical (measurable) goal benchmarks and an “ROI-way” to determine the viability of the proposed solution. In other words, the seller needs to paint a picture of how the seller’s solution will work best for that customer. 


About the Author:


Steve Bookbinder is Co-founder and CEO of Digital Media Training, a training partner to some of the most successful sales organizations around the world.  DMT delivers training which treats sales as a competitive sport and changes behavior needed to help sellers consistently win.  DMT is a leader in M-learning training reinforcement with a proven track record of improving sales through training. Steve has delivered more than 500 keynote speeches at national sales meetings, conducted more than 3,000 training workshops and trained, coached and managed more than 35,000 sellers and managers from leading companies around the world for more than 20 years.


About Molly D Protosow

Molly Protosow is the COO and Training Strategist for DMTraining. She manages the day-to-day business and training operations while helping research and develop new training programs as well as refreshing signature programs to reflect the newest sales trends, technology, and best practices. Molly utilizes her wide-range of skills to create sales and marketing assets focused on delivering value to DMT’s clients. Molly has a passion for learning and leveraging new knowledge and experiences. Outside of DMTraining, Molly is a hard core Pittsburgh sports fan, enjoys staying active by running and golfing, and unwinds by reading and playing the piano.

  • Connect with Molly D Protosow