Many sales professionals fear the introduction of buyers into the sales process where often the initial price of the solution becomes subjected to a request for a discount. These requests are traditionally passed back to their own organisations… and the supplier’s margins are immediately under pressure. How do sales teams use the balance between initial cost and monthly charges to protect their own margins while giving the customer the apparent initial discount that they crave?
A global supplier of BI solutions has proposed a marketing automation solution to an insurance company which provides pensions, investments and protection to consumers. The solution will allow the insurer to run more effective marketing campaigns and is aimed at replacing their current non-scalable solution. It means they will be able to run more campaigns without increasing staff numbers.
The solution cost is higher than the anticipated budgeted amount so pressure is on the sponsor to provide a solution internally. This is despite the fact that the internal teams do not have the resource to deliver anything in a meaningful timeframe.
In-depth sales negotiations revealed that different product ranges within the customer’s business would be impacted differently by the solution. With Shark it was an easy step to expand the analysis to cover these different areas. This supported the benefit values which were subsequently submitted to the board for approval and countered the need to offer a large discount. The bid team also included cost to the customer of delaying the decision and this helped in the decision against building a solution in-house!
The customer sponsor was able to obtain fast-track sign-off for the project as it showed that the benefits would be achieved faster and with less risk than developing what was thought to be a more cost effective solution in-house. The customer’s CFO was pleased with the NPV and IRR figures. It was also demonstrated that the deal was not unprofitable: a win for both customer and supplier!