Buying Enablement

For decades I’ve been developing, teaching, and writing about the change management steps people must take (13 Steps to Change) before they become buyers. I named it Buying Facilitation® (Helping Buyers Buy) as the method to lead folks on route to resolving a problem through to their own excellence, and make a purchase when they cannot resolve the problem themselves.

I’ve trained the model to approximately 100,000 people in companies such as Kaiser Permanente, Proctor and Gamble, IBM, Morgan Stanley, Bose, GE, KPMG, Wachovia, Sandia Labs, etc. But until now, it was housed in the ‘sales’ industry (although as a generic change facilitation model, I’ve also trained it to leaders and coaches).

With the advent of new technology, I’ve decided to use the ability to facilitate people through their Pre-Sales change management activity into the Sales Enablement field, but with a twist. Having clearly delineated the Buy Side from the Sell Side, I’m now offering companies a way to use marketing to lead would-be buyers through their decisions as they’re on route to become buyers. Ultimately, marketing can hand over names of real in-target buyers to sales, ABM and Sales Enablement. I offer the following: 

  1. Buy Side training: For both sales, marketing, and customer service professionals to understand the profound differences between the Buy Side and the Sell Side so all can work in tandem going forward.  
  2. Data gathering/report: To understand specifically how your specific buyers buy, I’ll speak with several current buyers to discover
    1. the timing, activity, search, people, and constraints during each stage of problem solving and change management;
    2. what they do and when to understand the full problem set. Includes people, relationship, history, and policy issues and snags encountered;
    3. patterns of (external) factors that bias problem maintenance and resolution, and cause resistance;
    4. the possible workarounds and range of solutions they’re considering to resolve the problem and how they fare;
    5. understand their risks in bringing in something new and how that affects people, policies and solution choices;
    6. the times they go online to research each stage and the search terms they use at each stage and why.  
  3. Marketing tools, article ideas, and Buyer Personas for each stage. I will suggest best practices and offer article titles along each step, to get folks the knowledge to do what they need to do. Ardath Albee will design Buyer Personas that lead people through each change management stage. With this full tool kit you’ll know
    1. where prospects are in the buy-cycle,
    2. the job titles of those involved,
    3. have a line between marketing -> content -> sales,
    4. offer titles so marketing can personalize the best content for each stage,
    5. be relevant to the specific needs of your audience. 
  4. Digital App: My ‘The Decider’ app will use Facilitative Questions in the order buying decisions get made, populated with the knowledge learned from the Report to
    1. efficiently lead folks through their decision phases if they need help;
    2. digitally lead site visitors to the pages with data they need from your site and/or your company,
    3. use with sellers in Deal Rooms,
    4. discover which stage of a change decision they’re at to make sure the best content is sent out to them at the right time.  
  5. Footers: Since they’re not yet buyers, we must be careful how solution details are offered. Ardath Albee can tie the right words, tone, style, and voice to ensure buyers are engaged personally.  
  6. Connect with Sales Enablement: This process will produce probable buyers to hand over to sales and Sales Enablement and continue outreach throughout the length of the customer life cycle.

The fields of sales and marketing continue to assume that any sign of ‘need’ (including Google searches) are indicators that the folks are buyers, eager recipients of product content. But we know this isn’t true or they’d be closing more.

Now, using my Buying Facilitation® model, my Facilitative Questions, and my knowledge of the steps people take to make decisions, my Buying Enablement initiative will truly both help buyers buy AND help sellers sell.

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