Buyer enablement is the methodology and mentality of making it as easy as possible for buying groups to buy from you, both during your customer’s first purchase and subsequent renewals and expansions.
Historically, buyers had to rely on sales and presales to move them through ‘software purchase actions’ when they were trying to make positive changes to their business. Now, though, prospects want to be able to move through the sales journey without being completely dependent on vendors. Helping buyers help themselves through the many stages of making a business change allows vendors with software and services to educate buyers and take certain steps on their own but in a supported way.
Take Charge of Buying; Let Go of Selling
Traditionally, B2B sales strategies and technologies have been focused on making sales more effective for the sales team and individual reps. Buyer enablement, in contrast, focuses on how to make the buying journey and decision-making process easier to navigate for those who actually do the selling, your buyers. Curious how? Read more here.
Developing Buyer Empathy
If we were to peel back the layers of ineffectiveness in B2B sales, we’d inevitably see one principle at the root of this problem: sellers are too seller–focused. How do we get customers onto our sales process? What sales training do we need to move deals along? What sales tools will enable us to run our motions better? How are we trending towards our goals? To start, we have to develop empathy for our buyers. Read more here.
How Buyers Think – Overcoming Emotional ROI
What we aren’t thinking about nearly often enough is the buyer — what they are thinking and feeling or what they need to close deals for you. Because that’s at the core of buyer enablement: you can’t close deals, only buyers can.
We unwittingly think that selling is about what we do rather than what the buyer does. And the irony is that selling isn’t about us; it’s about them—we need to understand our buyers more deeply. To learn how to think like a buyer, read more here.
What Buyers Actually Want From Sellers
When a prospect engages with your team, they have a problem they want to solve. They want you as a vendor to teach them how your solution is the answer to that problem.
Instead of trying to convince or persuade the prospect that you are the best option, you should focus on educating the customer on all their options so they can choose what’s best for their needs.
That’s what buyer enablement advocates for, doing what’s best for the customer. A buyer’s experience throughout a sales process has as much impact on completing the deal as the actual solution. For tips to deliver buyer’s what they want, read more here.
What Buyers Need From Vendors
Are you a seller or a buying coach? If your answer was the first one, it’s time you change your perspective. At least, you should if you’re interested in buyer enablement. No matter how great your team is, buyers are the people who close deals.
With how complex B2B purchases are, buyers need someone to guide them through the process. It is your job to show them how to do it. Your most valuable contribution to the buying process is in the form of coaching. But what do you coach on? Read here to find out what.
Sell the Pain of Change
Even though buyer enablement is all about making things easier for buyers, selling is part of your job but you’re selling the pain of change rather than product. if you don’t sell the customer on the idea that all the headache that comes along with implementation is worth it, you’ll never sell them anything.
No matter what you actually sell, what you provide customers will bring change and disruption to their work lives, at least short term. You have to convince them that any discomfort they’ll feel during training and implementation will not only be worth it, but beneficial. Luckily, the way you sell the pain of change isn’t completely different from the way you do traditional selling. Read here to find out more.
Enabling the Buying Group With the DEEP-C Framework
Shifting to a buyer enablement mindset is difficult, and getting your entire process aligned is even more difficult. That’s where the DEEP-C Framework comes in.
This framework provides the skills needed to enable customers to buy. It focuses on coaching champions so they can win over other stakeholders. That puts sellers, in this new game, into the role of ‘Buyer Coaches’. The steps are likely different from what salespeople normally do, but provide a guide to the kinds of actions they can take to connect with champions and other stakeholders in more meaningful ways.
- Discover your champion and through them discover the other stakeholders
- Engage the champion and through them engage each stakeholder
- Equip your internal champion with what they need to sell to the other stakeholders for you
- Personalize value to each stakeholder
- Coach the champion and other stakeholders through the buying process to a successful outcome
Our founder and CEO, Garin Hess, wrote an entire book on the subject. Become a master of buyer enablement.