Picture your ideal customer: collegial, eager to meet with you, and ready to champion your products across the organization. It turns out that’s the last person you should be pitching. Download and start listening now!
The need to understand how customers make their decisions, especially when it comes to selling large-scale, business-to-business solutions, drove the author team behind The Challenger Sale to investigate how sales reps won high-quality deals. What that team discovered may turn the common wisdom about customer behavior upside down.
Based on an exhaustive study of hundreds of sales reps and thousands of customers across multiple industries, the authors found that every potential customer contact falls into one of seven distinct profiles. While many are worth talking to, the highest performing reps concentrated their time on a specific few.
Most sales reps prefer to approach customers who are open and eager to meet with them, people with clearly articulated needs that make them easy to connect to solutions. The authors call these customers Talkers. The high performers spent their time, instead, with customers who were less eager to meet, generally skeptical and difficult to manage, and much more apt to be agnostic about one supplier over another. They call these customers Mobilizers.
High performers understand what their average-performing colleagues don’t: In a world in which complex deals require widespread consensus across a diverse—and typically dysfunctional—set of customer stakeholders, only Mobilizers have the skill and the will to fight for large-scale, disruptive change and, ultimately, help win the deal. Challenger sellers, in other words, target Challenger customers.
The authors unveil research that identifies Mobilizers and provide a road map for how sales and marketing teams can find them, engage them with disruptive insight, and leverage them to drive consensus across the customer organization.
Once you have identified the Mobilizers among your customers, almost any rep, with the right coaching, tools, and marketing support can start a chain reaction that leads to a whole organization getting on board with even the most provocative ideas.