Selling Against Goliath: How To Take On The “Big Guys” And Win.

Written by Dave Stein

Continued from page 1

Meeting—and defeating—Goliath’s challenges:

Here are some ways that a larger competitor might attempt to exploit your size, along with some potential considerations for handling those objections with your coaches and allies inrepparttar account:

üChallenge: The competition may question your viability torepparttar 127200 prospect. "What would happen to you, Mr. Prospect, if they were to go out of business or be acquired?"

Your strategy: Don't wait for this to happen, as it most likely will. You need a concise, compelling story, prepared in advance, that must be credibly and sincerely delivered by your most senior executives. Mitigating perceived risk is part ofrepparttar 127201 critical path to success when competing against a much larger rival.

üChallenge: The competition may attempt to expandrepparttar 127202 scope ofrepparttar 127203 evaluation into areas where you don't have a solution.

Your strategy: Alert your prospect in advance that this may happen. Praise their efforts in defining their requirements so well. Ask if they are prepared to haverepparttar 127204 scope of their initiative, project or investment substantially expanded.

üChallenge: The competition may attempt to impress your prospect with hordes of resources to demonstrate their prowess.

Your strategy: Again, prepare your prospect in advance that this may happen. Suggest that these firms make a lot of money and therefore haverepparttar 127205 ability to expend resources, in order to impress prospects to make a sale. If you know your competitor's bid will come in considerably higher than yours will, you may want to subtly suggest that using resources to win business may be a reason that their overhead is so high.

üChallenge: The competition may be willing to guarantee results in a way that you cannot.

Your strategy: Perhaps they can guarantee results, but at what cost torepparttar 127206 prospect? Educate your prospect thatrepparttar 127207 word "cost" in cost overrun does not only refer to what a customer pays a supplier. There are many other costs as well, including lost opportunity, customer satisfaction and employee retention to name a few.

How will you know in advance what your competition is going to do? Raise your competitive IQ. You do that by investingrepparttar 127208 time to aggregate and analyze past wins and losses against a few key competitors. When you do, you'll start to see patterns of behavior that individual companies andrepparttar 127209 people who sell for them use against you. Learning to build sales strategies based upon that information will you be able to begin to outsell your competitors on a consistent basis.

Rememberrepparttar 127210 two components. You'll be glad you did.

Qualification combined with strategic competitive selling does work, asserts Stein. As proof, he offersrepparttar 127211 following anecdote: “After confirming that size did not matter in a face-to-face meeting with a division president of a $5 billion corporation, my client,repparttar 127212 CEO of a $5 million firm, commanded that his team pursue a $2 million contract competing against a $750 million rival,” he says. “Now there is a David and Goliath scenario! I coached that sales team. Among other things, we dilutedrepparttar 127213 competition's apparent strengths and portrayed their large size as a liability, which in this case it really was.” “We outsoldrepparttar 127214 competition and wonrepparttar 127215 business,” Stein concludes. “And my client's company got a lot more to follow, because they did what they promised for their customer. Asrepparttar 127216 CEO related to me, elated with a contract five times larger than anything his team had secured up to that time, ‘the most important thing for me is that this process is repeatable.’ I think that makes a compelling case forrepparttar 127217 two components, and their critical role in smaller candidate’s success.”

Before founding The Stein Advantage, Inc., Dave Stein was employed in a diversity of executive sales and marketing roles. Dave consultants, coaches, speaks and trains on competitive sales strategies. He is author of How Winners Sell: 21 Proven Strategies to Outsell Your Competition & Win the Big Sale. Dave was an early adopter of technology and is a recognized expert on technology sales, marketing, and service. More info:

Transform Yourself from a Salesperson into a Businessperson

Written by Dave Stein

Continued from page 1
To survive and thrive inrepparttar information economy,repparttar 127199 most important skill you’ll need is good, old-fashioned business know-how. You should know how businesses operate, especially inrepparttar 127200 marketplace into which you sell. Become familiar with concepts and current practices in business strategy and planning, Internet commerce, business collaboration, and change management, among other areas. One of my clients, bidding to replace a company’s decade-old software with a new product that would let independent agents enter orders, asked howrepparttar 127201 company proposed to getrepparttar 127202 agents to acceptrepparttar 127203 changeover. There was a stunned silence. Nobody inrepparttar 127204 company had imagined thatrepparttar 127205 independents might resistrepparttar 127206 idea. My client, having uncovered an unidentified risk, locked uprepparttar 127207 deal by adding management services torepparttar 127208 proposal. Financial Statements Revisited The most important element of business know-how is understanding how financial statements represent a company’s financial position and how that company compares with others in its market. If you can’t read and interpret an income statement, cash flow statement, or balance sheet, learn to do so right away. There are no shortcuts. Those financial statements are as revealing of business health as CAT scans, EKGs, and blood tests are of your physical health. You don’t need to become a CPA, but a solid knowledge of financial concepts and an ability to compare clients are key. If you believe, as I do, that effective selling atrepparttar 127209 executive level is about quantifying and provingrepparttar 127210 business value you can contribute, then having business know-how is a vital component of that approach. If you don’t have it, how do you get it? Here are a few ideas: uTake a course in reading and interpreting financial statements at your local college, at night school, or (inrepparttar 127211 United States) withrepparttar 127212 American Management Association. In Europe, try Management Centre Europe. uRead a book onrepparttar 127213 subject. Dorepparttar 127214 exercises. uAsk your brokerage firm for guides to reading and interpreting financial statements. Most large brokerage houses have either a book or a comprehensive document onrepparttar 127215 subject. uSpend some time with your own company’s CFO, controller, or accountant. If you aren’t well versed in finance, do you know someone who can interpret a financial report for you in a pinch? uIf you have a close relationship with a client, ask his CFO, controller, or accountant to walk you throughrepparttar 127216 company’s financials. This is a very powerful way to understand how your client’s business operates. If you sell into a vertical market, this approach will give you real insight into that industry, which can be used when selling to other companies. We’re not talking about sharing proprietary information, of course, but industry norms — median profit margins, sales costs, revenues per employee, anything that will help you show how your offering contributes to their business plan. I submit to you thatrepparttar 127217 timeless truth about sales is, “It’s all about money” So if you can’t show your clients and customers how your offering will earn or save them big money, you’ll never consistently winrepparttar 127218 big sale. Action: Developrepparttar 127219 skill of zooming in and zooming out — looking at your client’s company from 40,000 feet, diving deeply into relevant details, only to zoom out torepparttar 127220 big picture again. More articles at

Before founding The Stein Advantage, Inc., Dave Stein was employed in a diversity of executive sales and marketing roles. Dave consultants, coaches, speaks and trains on competitive sales strategies. He is author of How Winners Sell: 21 Proven Strategies to Outsell Your Competition & Win the Big Sale. Dave was an early adopter of technology and is a recognized expert on technology sales, marketing, and service. More info:

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