How to Navigate Value Dynamics Along The Customer’s Journey, Part 3

Let’s continue our sailing trip on the high seas with the customer’s implementation and adoption phase and the related value dynamics.

From change dynamics to decision dynamics to value dynamics

A few weeks ago, we discussed the dynamics of the customer’s journey, especially the change dynamics in the early stages of the customer’s journey. In a follow-up post, we discussed the decision dynamics that determine the actual buying phase.

Now, let’s discuss the value dynamics in the customer’s implementation, adoption and usage phase. This is the phase that’s actually the most important one for the client because for them, a buying decision is just a milestone on their way to get to the value they have invested in. For sales professionals, that means they don’t walk away. They don’t need to become service agents, but they do have to ensure that the value they have sold to the buying team gets implemented (delivered or created, whatever makes more sense in your context) in the way the buying team envisioned it. And this vision of future success should be created with the buying team during the awareness phase. This is all about co-creating a reason for the buying team to make a decision to change their current state in the first place. This is why we call these dynamics change dynamics, because it is all about creating a valid business with the buying team to change their current state.

Each buyer perceives value differently: Message differently, but message to ALL involved stakeholders

Different members of the buying team perceive value differently. Sales professionals know this, and they adjust their value messaging and their unique value propositions to each buyer’s specific role, challenges, and interests.

As an example, a commercial and financial role is more focused on the implementation of the pure business case compared to the project manager who is responsible for the entire implementation. Then, there are members of the buying team who benefit indirectly from certain projects. For example, production and service roles may benefit from a stable sales and company forecasting process. But they have less at stake than the chief sales officer who is accountable for the project to improve the forecasting process and accuracy. And the procurement person has a different perspective on the project and is interested in other details.

Communicate value confirmation messages to the senior executives who were only involved early on

As they ensure that the value that has been sold is implemented properly, sales professionals must not neglect another important step: communicate tailored value confirmation messages to ALL involved members of the buying team. And that includes senior executives who may have only been involved in the very early stages before they delegated the project. Often, these senior execs hear nothing at all from the responsible salesperson, but they do hear company gossip about the project. It is essential for any kind of future business with this customer to include these stakeholders when communicating value confirmation messages that connect directly to the vision of future success that was developed with them in the awareness phase.

Solid value confirmation messaging is the prerequisite for additional business with this customer

Only if all stakeholders can perceive the value that has been implemented in the way that is relevant to their role can a foundation for future business with this customer be created. Up-selling, cross-selling or repeating the same project in another business unit or region is only possible when customers are satisfied with the value that has been created with this project. And that’s why value dynamics have to be navigated as precisely and effectively as change dynamics or decision dynamics. The tailored value confirmation messages communicated to the involved stakeholders create the foundation for future business.

Adaptive fluency is what makes the difference between good and great in these different situations: salespeople’s ability to quickly adjust their activities, behaviors, messages, and strategies when situations are new, changed, or becoming even more complex.

Questions for you:

  • How do you enable your salespeople across the customer’s implementation, adoption and usage phases, regarding skills, knowledge, strategies, and fluency?
  • Which content types and enablement tools do you provide for salespeople to prepare themselves and to share with clients during implementation, adoption and usage?
  • If you’re not equipping your salespeople in this way, is growing your business with existing customers a challenge?

 

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