Many believe that Value is just about financially quantifying the ROI impact of a solution. But quantification is only a small portion of what today’s buyer cares about, what fuels change and what inspires a successful decision-making process.
The highest performing sellers recognize that you have to go beyond the quantified financial value and ROI of your solution alone.
Those most successful, evolved sellers recognize that each prospect in the decision-making process has three value perspectives, Personal, Business and Organization and will use each one to influence the purchase decision:
1) Personal Value. What’s in it for me? If you want your solution to motivate change, it is important to connect with your buyer’s individual emotions. As a result, you need to help by uncovering the personal challenges your mobilizer / champion is having, the individual goals they have in overcoming these challenges and mapping this to exactly how your solution can potentially help. The key is to understand and articulate how the solution can make the prospect’s life better on an individual level.
For example, will your solution help make their work-from-home better, and reduce late nights so that they can spend more times with family and friends? Will it help them get a promotion, or perhaps avoid perceived obsolescence and even job loss, or gain accolades from executives and peers?
As an evolved seller, you should seek to understand the challenges and the Personal Value your prospect as an individual anticipates earning from your solution, across these four potential dimensions of Personal Value:
- Monetary – Help your prospect earn that raise or bonus they deserve
- Life balance – Help your prospect achieve better work life balance
- Career risk mitigation – Keep your prospect relevant within the organization and reduce the perceived risk of job obsolescence or loss
- Recognition – Help your prospect garner the internal recognition and external accolades and awards from leaders, peers and industry organizations.
2) Business value. What does your solution do to generate a top and bottom-line improvement for the prospect? The economic outcome of the solution should be quantified by the evolved seller to tally the financial savings and gains potential, culminating in a discounted cash flow / ROI analysis.
For example, how will your proposed solution help your prospect capture new markets, reduce business risk, avoid costs or improve productivity, and compared to the required investment, what will this return to the organization?
You should help the prospect quantify the Business Value outcomes expected from your solution across four key dimensions (from tactical/tangible to more strategic and less tangible):
- Cost avoidance or savings – helping your prospect’s business to reduce current operating costs, avoid an anticipated capital or operating expense.
- Productivity and process improvements – automating the prospect’s manual tasks and business processes to avoid manual efforts, reduce process steps, reduce the skill levels of those needed to perform the tasks, and reduce process errors.
- Risk mitigation – reducing the risks to the business from safety, regulations, compliance, security, downtime and other potential issues, helping to reduce the probability of the risk being realized as well as the potential impacts.
- Business growth – helping the prospect improve the top-line (revenue), helping to capture potential growth opportunities, scale and adapt more effectively, reduce churn, capture lost opportunities and accelerate time to market.
3. Organization value – How do you help the experience of those touched by your solution? This means going beyond just the financial impact, to tally how experiences of the users and those impacted by the solution downstream are improved.
For example, how well does the proposed solution help to improve customer experiences? How does it garner better reviews and influencer referrals?
The most evolved sellers recognize that there is an often higher order, non-quantifiable impact outcome to communicate and quantify for the prospect, as an organization value impact, which includes these four dimensions:
- Employee experience – helping the prospect understand and tally the impact on employee experiences, how the internal user adoption and job experience will be improved via the proposed solution.
- Partner experience – with the indirect channel and partners so important to many businesses, helping the prospect to understand the impact the solution will have on distribution and business partner channels and their business.
- Influencer experience – the potential impact the proposed solution is expected to have on reviews, referrals and influencers.
- Customer experience – the impact of the proposed solution on customer adoption and satisfaction.
Evolved sellers know that with today’s more risk averse and economic buyer you absolutely have to quantify the financial impact of the proposed solution and deliver an ROI business case.
However, you can’t stop there, as there is much more value to communicate and quantify in order to help buyer’s embrace change, gain buying committee consensus and ultimately be inspired to push the decision through. You have to go beyond the financial business value impacts alone, to articulate value using all three value perspectives, especially illuminating the Personal Value that your mobilizer/champions and key central prospects hope to individually gain from your solution, and the Organization Value to be gained by solution users from the improved experiences in leveraging your solution.
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