Your Customer’s Sixth Step: Commitment

Throughout the first five steps of the buy-learning process, your prospects’ focus has been on achieving value. They have examined their problems, determined the problems’ seriousness, and examined the alternatives. They have a well-defined expectation of value because their attention has been on the benefits they will enjoy by purchasing. Now, in Step 6, Commitment, the focus changes from the value of your solution to its cost.

If your negotiation is occurring at the proper time, that is, after the two of you have completed the first five steps in the process, then there is good news: your prospect wants to buy from you! However, don’t start computing your commission. The prospect will usually want more concessions. This is when real negotiating begins. Customers negotiate because they know that getting a lower price or other concession is likely at this stage. They do it because it works! But there are other reasons prospects negotiate. If you wish to negotiate successfully, you will want to understand the motivations of the other party.

People negotiate hard when their jobs are on the line.

Buyers are often (always?!) evaluated by their ability to save the company money.

CEOs and Core-level decisionmakers are evaluated on much more than price.

Example: efficiency of operations and return on investment. Consequently they negotiate differently, focusing on a variety of items.

Some buyers negotiate vigorously if:

They want to be admired.

They enjoy being tough.

It is strongly recommended that any negotiating you engage be done in good faith, with the objective of achieving a win-win, even if you are negotiating with Attila the Hun. You can learn lots of “tricks” from negotiating books. They may work short-term. But in the long run they work against you.

Obtaining commitment from your prospect is a matter of working through the negotiating process so that everyone wins.

For more specific ways of accomplishing this, please attend one of our Sales Seminars!

Kevin Davis

Kevin F. Davis is the author of The Sales Manager’s Guide to Greatness”, which was named the 2018 Axiom Business Book Award Winner, Silver Medal. Kevin is also the author of Slow Down, Sell Faster!”.