Customer inaction can be a major impediment to complex sales

Very often the outcome of enterprise software sales campaigns is simply customer inertia. In these cases there is no outcome. Customers may profess an interest in learning further about a solution, but fail to move on one, regardless of how well the complex sales campaign has been put together. In our experience, selling efforts for new products, services and/or integrated solutions can, very often, produce this type of “let’s go on with the status quo” result. Of course, offerings that are new to enterprise markets are largely unproven; therefore, it is particularly difficult for enterprise prospects to muster much confidence that a new solution will solve an important problem.

Inactivity is also a frequent result of sales campaigns for solutions to problems that have not fully coalesced in the marketplace for enterprise software. In these cases prospects are incapable of clearly identifying what they need. There is a probable problem (for example the recent Bring Your Own Device, BYOD, phenomenon as a type of activity that can expose an organization’s data to malicious attack), but the specific, quantified cost of the problem is not yet clear. Prospects are still determining the impact of the problem on the bottom line. They are not ready to take action, yet, on a solution.

Finally, customer inaction can result from internal organizational issues. Often, in these cases, teams of contacts (ostensible owners of a process as well as any/all related problems) are finally found to lack the authority to act on a remedy. In fact, decision-making at enterprise businesses with this type organizational issue is proven to be the province of someone else at the organization, someone who the sales team has neglected to contact. Once authority has been properly determined (but at a very late stage in a developing opportunity) to reside elsewhere, the prospect, typically, decides to table any discussion and simply proceed as usual.

IMB Enterprises, Inc. has considerable experience addressing the need for enterprise software sales teams to learn to quickly determine the likelihood of prospect inactivity. Let’s face it, time is an irreplaceable commodity. Therefore, it behooves these software sales teams to spend as little time as possible on opportunities where intertia is the most likely outcome.

If you would like to hear how we generally address each of the above examples of prospect inertia, then please contact us. You may telephone Ira Michael “Mike” Blonder at +1 631-673-2929 to further a discussion. You may also email Mike at imblonder@imbenterprises.com.

© IMB Enterprises, Inc. & Ira Michael Blonder, 2012 All Rights Reserved

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