Written by Sean McPheat |
In recent years the balance of power between buyer and seller has swung dramatically in favour of the buyer. Sellers are now faced with more professional, more knowledgeable and more powerful buyers – and the sales techniques used in previous years are no longer working.
The old sales techniques around how good the products and services were has given way to salespeople reinventing their approach. This has had to happen because, simply put, the way today’s buyer makes decisions has completely changed.
Peter Chaverton and Jan Paul van der Velde’s book ‘Understanding the Professional Buyer’ looks at how the modern buyer operates and discusses how the complex nature of the buyer-seller relationship has changed over the years.
They claim that the new buyers are no longer just ‘administrators’ in a long line of purchase-order-monkeys who perhaps do some price bargaining during the process and not much else. Instead:
Chaverton and van der Velt state that the very nature and essence of salesmanship has changed to reflect these needs of the buyer and today’s salesperson has had to develop many more entrepreneurial skills than before as they support and drive forward the customer’s business.
I believe this to back up much other research that has been carried out. It supports the idea that salespeople today have to:
So, identify how you can understand the professional buyer better now and in the future. If you don’t, well, you run the risk of being one of the also-rans in the race to the finish.
Originally published: 10 September, 2014
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