Showing posts from February, 2012

What is Discounting Costing You?

Discounting is unfortunately a way of life for many of our sales professionals today. 

There is a new breed of buyer who is more skeptical and frugal than ever before, indicating that price is the key factor in over 64% of decisions (U of Dayton). As well, these buyers are now firmly in control of the purchase cycle, inviting sales later than ever, when the process is already 65% complete (Forrester).

The engagement for many sales professionals doesn’t start at the crucial opportunity discovery or needs analysis phase. Instead, the engagement occurs when the “bake-off” is in full swing. As a result of the late invite and competitiveness of this stage, our sales professionals are often forced to discount as the only way to win the business.

Unfortunately, this has a high cost. Take a typical $500M software company. Discounting of a typical 10% per deal can add up, costing this organization $50M per year in lost sales.

What if you could reduce the number of deals where discounting was neede…

What is a Lengthening Sales Cycle Costing You?

For many B2B firms, sales cycles have extended by a month or more over the past few years, and show little signs of shortening. The economic malaise continues to drive buyers to be more skeptical, risk adverse and frugal, causing a rapid increase in stalled deals, and understandable delays in the decision making process.

These sales cycle delays have had a serious impact on B2B sales revenue and growth, resulting in the failure of many sales and marketing organizations to meet growth goals and quotas.

As a result of stalled sales and lengthening sales cycles, hundreds of millions in new sales has been lost, yet most organizations are unaware of the real cost of these sales cycle delays.

For a typical $500M software company, the average cost per each month of extended sales cycles is $41.66M ($500M /12).

What if you could accelerate the sales cycle on just a fraction of your deals…..and reduce these elongated cycles?

For our $500M company example, the value of reducing sales cycles:

·By 1 …

Are we all Investing in the Wrong Content?

We all know the importance of content marketing, but some recent research would indicate that the spending is not aligned with effectiveness, and that "yes", we are investing too much in the wrong content:

Up to 60% of deals are not lost to the competition, but to the status quo - more risk adverse and frugal buyers choosing to do nothing, rather than change (SBI) 65% of deals go to the solution provider that helps uncover the issue and establishes the business need as a priority, versus 35% that goes to those that win the bake-off (Forrester)However, when we examine content marketing and sales enablement investments, more than 70% of the spending is currently aimed at the later, competitive shoot-out stages of the decision cycle,versus addressing the more important earlier stages, where the buyer needs to be convinced as to "Why Change?" and "Why Now?".

Perhaps this is why Content Marketing Institute continues to report that >50% of content marketing p…

What is the Value of a Lead?

It seems like it’s harder than ever to get your prospects interested, and turn them into real opportunities.

The issue is that your prospects have clearly changed, today more:

1.In Control – leveraging more information sources than ever, especially the Internet, social media and collaboration groups, your prospects dictate when and how they want to be engaged, and when they do, are armed with a wealth of knowledge about potential opportunities, your solution and the competition.
2.Overloaded – forced to do more with less, your prospects have less time than ever to engage with solution providers, yet at the same time, are inundated with dozens of vendor phone calls and emails each day.
3.Skeptical – your prospect has heard it all before, so the same old product / solution pitches won’t work.
4.Frugal – more risk adverse and with less budget, your prospect is more apt to “Do Nothing, than to say “Yes”. Unfortunately, it takes a lot today to convince your prospect to part with precious funds…

What is the Do Nothing Buyer Costing You?

Up to 60% of deals in sales pipelines are currently not being lost to the competition, but are being lost to the status quo – the do nothing buyer (Sales Benchmark Index). This malaise is costing millions in lost sales, and represents the single greatest opportunity for driving your 2012 sales and marketing success.

As we have been reporting for some time, the Great Recession has led to a fundamental and permanent change in B2B buyers, who are more overloaded, skeptical and frugal than ever before – Frugalnomics is in full effect. As a result, many buyers are forced to do-more-with-less, and are more risk adverse. These buyers are more apt to stick with their current state than change, even though they know their legacy solutions are not ideal.

If they are like the majority, your buyers are unduly assigning extreme cost and risk to any proposed changes, so your prospect needs to be convinced as to the overwhelming, quantifiable reasons to consider new solutions, or they will simply do …

Can we host the Alinean developed sales / marketing tool?

Just like several very successful sales and marketing applications, especially, cloud services is our business delivery model.

Like or other cloud service providers, they don't let you host because, having the provider host often delivers faster time to market, allows you to focus on your core competencies / applications, often delivers superior service,  and in almost all instances, provides lower total cost of ownership (TCO) compared to premise-based solutions. 

For Alinean, the cloud service delivery model provides:

1) a rich on-line / database driven enterprise application, Alinean XcelLive, that would be difficult to manage host on your own - Some of the features include fast tool development, lower cost maintenance, rich customer intelligence, superior access and data security, integrated administration and reporting, and integration with CRM and marketing automation systems. Additional features can be found here: