Facilitating Success, One Decision At A Time

Sharon Drew Morgen

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Don’t Give Away Free Programs

Offering free programs to prospects is a massive waste of resource: not only are you trying to get prospects you don’t know to spend time they don’t have to do something they don’t think they need, it becomes a double sale – you must then discard ‘no-sayers’ from your list of perfectly good prospects who might have bought.

Stop Giving Away ProgramsYou could convince me if it worked. But the prospects that show up are either merely looking for a freebie (and possibly send lower level people) or are actually trialing several solutions.
It’s possible to use the phone to actually sell your solution! You do not need to give anything away for free! The sales problems you are facing are ‘sales model’ problems. You’re just not facilitating the comprehensive buy path, and assume that by letting prospects experience your solution you’ll bias their decision in favor of you.

But until buyers have all their ducks in a row – assemble everyone who will touch the final solution, compare internal fixes with current providers with external providers – they cannot buy regardless of whether your freebie is terrific. So they might attend your free program, love you, love the program, love your solution – and not buy because they aren’t ready, because they haven’t managed their internal politics, or  have their ‘need’ misdefined because HR was brought in too late, or they might fire someone. None of which, obviously, is connected to your solution.

The last step a buyer takes is to choose an external solution. Where are they along their buying decision path? How many of the influencers and decision makers have agreed on an external solution as the most effective fix? How will those issues be addressed? Because until they are, you have no idea who you are inviting into a free program.

Connect by facilitating change and getting buy-in, and then continue speaking with those who are on a trajectory to change that makes sense. Buying Facilitation® will teach you how to do that, and to enable those who CAN buy (vs. those who SHOULD buy). That way you can begin each conversation by teaching folks to buy and get rid of those who can’t. And in either case you do not need to offer a free program. I’ll teach you. Sharondrew@sharondrewmorgen.comor www.buyingfacilitation.com.

Don’t Give Away Free Programs is a post from: SharonDrewMorgen.com

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Sharon Drew Morgen is the visionary and thought leader behind Buying Facilitation® the new sales paradigm that focuses on helping buyers manage their buying decision. She is the author of the NYTimes Business Bestseller Selling with Integrity as well as 5 other books and hundreds of articles that explain different aspects of the decision facilitation model that teaches buyers how to buy.

Morgen dramatically shifts the buying decision tools from solution-focused to decision-support. Sales very competently manages the solution placement end of the decision, yet buyers have been left on their own while sellers are left waiting for a response, and hoping they can close. But no longer: Morgen actually gives sellers the tools to lead buyers through all of their internal, idiosyncratic decisions.

Morgen teaches Buying Facilitation® to global corporations, and she licenses the material with training companies seeking to add new skills to what they are already offering their clients. She has a new book coming out October 15, 2009 called Dirty Little Secrets: why buyers can’t buy and sellers can’t sell and what you can do about it which defines what is happening within buyer’s cultures (systems) and explains how they make the decisions they make.

Morgen has focused on the servant-leader/decision facilitation aspect of sales since her first book came out in 1992, called Sales On The Line.
In all of her books, she unmasks the behind-the-scenes decisions that need to go on before buyers choose a solution, and gives sellers the tools to aid them.

In addition, Morgen changes the success rate of sales from the accepted 10% to 40%: the time it takes buyers to come up with their own answers is the length of the sales cycle, and her books – especially Dirty Little Secrets – teaches sellers how to guide the buyers through to all of their decisions, thereby shifting the sales cycle from a failed model that only manages half of the buying cycle, to a very competent Professional skill set.

Morgen lives in Austin TX, where she dances and works with children’s fund raising projects in her spare time.