In my years selling, I’ve tried to accelerate deals in many ways:
- Pain amplification (dragging them through the glass)
- Proof of concepts/proof of value
- Discounts (rarely work)
Nothing I’ve tried has ever worked as well as having a true champion sprinting through walls to get the deal done.
Let’s talk about how to build and enable champions to accelerate your deals across three key areas:
People act in self-interest. You need to tie your solution to personal wins for your champion – not just company benefits.
Some questions to guide you:
- How do they earn a promotion?
- What do they discuss in their 1:1s with their boss?
If you don’t know, ask!
Your champion’s number one “job to be done” is to accelerate their career success. Find out how your solution does that for them, and they’ll accelerate your deal.
2) Mitigate Risk
No one wants to champion a solution that fails. While you are excitedly talking to your champion about all the things that will go right, they are thinking about what could go wrong and the impact it would have on their political capital.
Avoiding this risk doesn’t make it go away. Instead, run at the risk. Here’s one way to bring it up:
“We both want you to succeed – hopefully, the examples I’ve shared so far have painted an exciting picture of where we could go together. To increase the likelihood of success, let’s take a look at the situations where our solution doesn’t deliver the expected impact so we can make sure to avoid those mistakes.”
Then, candidly walk through common reasons why your solution fails, along with how you will help them avoid those pitfalls.
Instead of your champion silently worrying, “What could go wrong” you’ve brought those issues into the open along with the solutions.
3) Remember and Repackage
Your buyers (including your most loyal of champions) forget most of what you discuss. Just sharing deal-winning information isn’t enough. You also need to help them remember the key points and then repackage them to resonate with others in the decision-making group.
Throughout the deal cycle, take notice of the most important points for your champion.
Summarize those points for them in an easily accessible format.
Then, work with your champion to repackage those key points to resonate with their broader team.