Stephen Newman’s Blog

Four success stories which could change the way you sell….forever!

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We love ‘thank you’ messages from  customers. One email told us our client (transportation sector) had won a contract  worth €1.6 billion against a strong, preferred, competitor.  The sale looked really difficult but they did it. How? They tell us our Value Wheel workshops made the difference. They influenced the customer’s expected decision.

Another client sells inspection products and services to electricity and gas companies. Their market was overcrowded and commoditised. Bidding for business became a game of “Survival of the Cheapest”. Our client successfully changed their customers’ perception. How? Our Value Wheel workshops showed them how to impact their customers’ buying criteria.  Our client’s products were perceived as the most expensive. What changed? Our workshops helped them create new insights  and a completely different value proposition with a compelling business case.

In IT services, our third client’s public sector customer was rigorously pursuing a programme of cost cutting. To increase efficiency the customer planned to buy the cheapest solution that matched their specification.  Although our client’s proposal was not the least expensive , our client still won. How? Our Value Wheel workshops helped them present their solution in a context which differentiated them from the competition. While their competitors submitted compliant, low-cost bids, our client uncovered different and incremental value and communicated it influencing the RFQ in their favour.

Our fourth story is about the manufacturer of a simple, low-cost food ingredient. A significant key account customer started an aggressive campaign to force the manufacturer to drive down the purchase price. The account wanted to expand their operations into new markets and felt the manufacturer should drop their price in exchange for future volume. The manufacturer kept the account and grew it significantly without offering a single penny discount even when the customer could buy the product cheaper elsewhere. How did the manufacturer achieve that result? Our Value Wheel workshops helped them reframe and present benefits in the relationship that were previously unseen and unspoken. The procurement team could have indeed achieved a price reduction but the loss of value in other areas would have seriously undermined business growth strategy. Even in this small commodity, the Value Wheel found hidden value for the customer’s management team, rendering the original procurement plan to save cost unhelpful.

What connects these  success stories and many more we can show you? In each case our clients changed their customers’ view of their own buying drivers from being predominantly price-driven to being value-justified. Discussions moved from controlling price to securing value. Using a consistent and visible sales process to capture critical information, we coached each sales / bid team to think  differently about value and difference for their customers. Our Value Wheel clients understand that every opportunity is different. They understand strategic sourcing for each opportunity as well as they understand selling. Sticking to  the same old sales approach as before with time pressures, would probably have lost the sale or some profit.

Our value workshops stimulate different thinking and bring new ideas,  rigour and discipline to the sales process. They help you to uncover new insights that your customers find difficult to ignore. They unlock your customers’ true business potential giving your bid teams much more to pitch for.  Just when you feel the customer is trying to commoditise your solution, you have the tools to refine your sales strategy and create significant value.

Do you have some important opportunities in your funnel? How will you differentiate your proposal? If you would like to know who the companies were, we have plenty of references. Get in touch to learn more about our value workshops. Contact Stephen Newman at  Tel: Office: +44 1923 818967  Mobile+44 7970 230475 .