Dormant Buying Influencers

Sales Methodologies for the Corporate Market

By Rick Beyer

Business-to-Business (B2) marketing and sales require a comprehensive approach to activate and nurture the right decision-makers. While it may be clear regarding who the technical decision-maker is, there are multiple buying influences at any organization dormant within every significant deal.

The technical buying influencer relies upon the specifications of your product. They are usually risk-averse and will only operate within a corporate policy or guideline. When working only with the technical buying influencer, it poses challenges when breaking into the B2B market.

“If your message is the same between your technical and dormant buyer, you’ll likely get bumped down”

Other buying influences within a corporate account may not be activated, thus creating an opportunity to outmaneuver your competition. These dormant buying influencers are often not interested in your product’s technical specifications. Instead, they will buy knowledge, improved competitive position, and strategic improvements.

Who are these dormant buying influencers? They are the executives and stakeholders who buy an improved competitive position and say “Yes” when everyone else says no. There are also other constituents who will directly rely upon the performance of your product and can be very influential in the decision process.

Dormant buying influencers require different messages and approaches. If your communication to an executive is the same as your technical buying influence, you will likely get bumped-down to the technical buyer for an inability to activate the dormant buyer. Also, if you start the sales process low in the organization, you’ll likely be stuck with the technical buying influence who can only say “No” to value-add or innovative deals.

You never have a second chance to make a first impression. Commencing your sales journey at the highest level of an organization with a credible message aligning with your competitive position, strategy, and knowledge are ideal starting points. This approach will result in a higher probability of activating the dormant buying influencers and outflanking your competition.