There are an average of 6.8 stakeholders involved in any B2B buying decision, according to CEB Research.
My experience is that the actual number varies widely. Sometimes it’s 1, sometimes it’s 10, sometimes it’s 6.
The more people are involved, the more difficulty in getting the sale done. And the more people involved, the more you need to understand the different roles they play in the decision-making process.
Sometimes you’ll be dealing with someone called an “Influencer,” meaning they exert influence over the final decision, but they don’t have deciding power.
Some people will tell you never to deal with anyone but a decision maker, but it’s not a practical posture when there are 7 people involved and you know the sale will be measured in months, not days or weeks.
Which means you’ll have to understand how to help someone else – the Influencer – sell on your behalf.
There are many ways to help them do this, and I outline a few on the latest episode of the Modern Sales podcast.
And I open it all up with a tale of college fraud – you probably heard about it last week.
What you’ll hear in the podcast episode:
- How to know the difference between a junior Influencer and Decision Maker
- Why ownership is the single most powerful thing you can give someone in the sale
- Specific steps to take to sell more effectively through Influencers, and have them sell effectively on your behalf
- Why being a co-conspirator is the smartest strategy you have
Give the episode a listen here: