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What Are The Real Reasons You Lose Deals?

Let’s play Sales & Marketing Psychic for a minute…

Grab your reason-code report for last quarter’s lost sales. Got it? Ok.

Now…not knowing anything at all about your business or your team…I’m willing to bet…your brew-of-choice…that the number one reason being reported by your sales team is…drumroll, please…

Price!

But wait…I’m not only willing to bet that your sales team believes they lose deals primarily due to price…I’m also willing to bet that they’re dead wrong.

Why am I so confident?

I just finished reviewing Why Companies Win and Lose Strategic Sales, a research briefing in the Playbook authored by Rick Reynolds.

Rick and his team at AskForensics do win/loss analysis for a living—we love that kind of information here at MindBrew.  In fact, his team has researched, investigated, and analyzed nearly $11 billion worth of transactions for some of the largest companies in the world.

And they don’t just do surveys or ask the sales teams…they actually interview the buyers to get to the real reasons behind the losses.

What are those reasons? Here are three that got my attention:

  1. Poor understanding of requirements.
  2. Poor sales presentations and proposals.
  3. Lack of ability to provide proactive ideas.

Hmmmm. These all sound like things that are under the sales team’s direct control.

Does pricing play a role? Absolutely.

But as Why Companies Win and Lose Strategic Sales reveals, pricing’s role is not nearly as significant as many sales teams are reporting…particularly when it comes to the larger deals.

Now, that may seem somewhat counter-intuitive. But when you really get below the surface and actually talk to buyers, it turns out that companies are losing the bigger deals for reasons other than price…reasons that are well-within the sales team’s ability to correct.

Of course, these other reasons may not be as convenient a scapegoat as price…but that doesn’t make them any less real.

PS: In the highly-unlikely event that I lost the bet, just look me up on your next visit to my neck of the woods and I’ll buy you that brew 🙂

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