Monday, February 14, 2011

Re-visiting Signature Selling Concept :)

While working on the Marketing Analytics project, we realized its practical implications...what began as a passing remark over the lunch in the office, has far-reaching outcomes. So, introducing to you the 'Signature Selling Methodology' for identifying a prospective life-partner.
Is your life upside down ? Do you have the force to convert the prospect to a partner ? Is your CRM system effective ? Do you feel a stomach churn caused by too many lost or delayed deals ?

You studied hard, climbed the corporate ladder, and enjoy the fruits of labor put in the yesteryears; when you realize the universe has started conspiring to make you settle down. The idea itself is so unsettling. But, this inertia in itself is not an insurmountable obstacle. The key ingredient for any successful transformation is a clear vision.

Traditional or arranged methods either ignore the prospects' expectations or dominate them, rather than moving in harmony with it. A successful search process must recognize that it is a part of a comprehensive life-plan. Since your situation is unique, you need to tailor your own requirements, specific to your circumstances. But you are not alone, as you'll realize when you explore the market.

You'll find the world around you changing rapidly: competitors re-orienting themselves to go after your crush; prospects expecting more and more, and faster than ever before. To accelerate win rate, you need to set high objectives to improve the speed, quality and volume of your opportunity pipeline; and generate more mind-share within a shorter selling cycle.

So, take a closer look at the seven stage sales funnel; to understand the tools and techniques of the trade: 
1. NOTICED: It's important that you catch the eye of the right person. So you need the right segmentation, targeting and positioning. Understand your territory, set the preferences and PartnerPlan. Various matrimonial websites will help you kick-start. Perform a secondary research through publicly available sources to generate a lead.
2. IDENTIFIED: This happens when you find a lead, i.e. someone you've not spoken to, but is worth pursuing. It's when someone demonstrates interest in you or you express an interest in a profile. So mull over your options and prioritize your opportunity portfolio. Tools like dialogue prompter will come in handy to initiate a conversation.
3. VALIDATED: At this stage, detailed profiles are exchanged, personal requirements are confirmed, and credentials verified. Conduct a feasibility study, and if it's a good fit, the lead gets converted to an opportunity. Here you may adopt primary research techniques, site visits and BG check.
4. QUALIFIED: Now is the time to articulate your capabilities, adjust your marketing tactics, engage the person in hearty conversations, set regular check-points to review the progress, and provide a compelling reason to act. You can thus choose to qualify or dis-engage from the assignment. Utilize electronic or digital media like mail, call and chat.
5. CONDITIONAL AGREEMENT: A formal meeting is now arranged with the prospect. Forecasting techniques can be employed to predict the win-odds. Prepare a benefit case of the cost of you losing your freedom vs. the gains from the merger. Do a pre-proposal review and get the sponsor's or guardian's approval. If the condition of mutual satisfaction is met, negotiate a preliminary evaluation phase and place a reservation order.
6. WON: Wow! finally the verdict is out. You're committed to value a relationship. Refine the solution, and arrive at mutually agreed terms. Obtain the 'Signature' on the win-win contract. Implement the project and celebrate your success with a high flying ceremony.
7. LOST TO COMPETITION: Alas! unfortunately your interests don't match the prospects'. So, resolve the conflict between your mind and your heart. Reset to Stage 1 of the selling cycle. Iterate!

(Plz ignore the corporate bull-shit. On this V-day, may you win a million hearts).

PS: Picture courtesy Google.