The Buying Process Starts Much Earlier Than You Think

I’ve been frustrated of late, as I witness the field of digital selling – marketing automation, telesales, and lead gen – talk about following the buying process.

Indeed, they are only following the last 10% of the buying process. Look at this illustration:

Before buyers get online, or know fully what they need, or are ready to choose a solution, they must do/have the following:

  1. buy-in from all of the internal folks who will touch the solution – and getting this right is challenging;
  2. a route forward through change management so when a solution enters, it won’t cause disruption – and getting this right is delicate;
  3. assurance that current vendors can’t help – and they will certainly try to.

None of the above involves solution data. None of the above is done on line althought they might be perusing data at the same time.


It’s very very important to note that until or unless the entire Buying Decision Team is on board, nothing will happen – the political fallout and internal disruption is too high. Not to mention that each member of the Buying Decision Team brings different criteria to the purchasing decision, so when buyers start off considering a change or purchase they have different buying criteria (and hence need different data) then when the whole decision team is on board.

In other words, they might start off needing one thing and end up needing something else.

Digital selling, lead management, lead generation, and telesales, are only managing a small portion of the buying decision process. It’s possible to enter far earlier. Why aren’t we?

Read my newest book Dirty Little Secrets – it explains the entire buying decision process. With all of the technological options available, it’s simple to start earlier. I welcome discussions with tech companies that seek new content.


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