Selling to big companies: Target Discretionary Budgets


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For business services firms, securing ongoing assignments from Fortune 1000-sized companies is a planned growth strategy.

Major account acquisition takes into account the fact that there are multiple stakeholders around any decision to hire a new service provider. Knowing where to invest development efforts within large, complex organizations is made easier by understanding that discretionary budgets are more likely to fund first assignments with new suppliers.How do you know where the larger discretionary budgets are likely to be?

Discretionary budgets are related to the revenue a business unit is responsible for. Knowing which groups generate the biggest chunks of revenue is vital when going after discretionary budgets.

Consider a business unit which produces 20% of overall revenues but the company owns controlling interest versus a wholly-owned subsidiary which generates the same revenue.

Which business unit would be a better prospect? Tell us why.

In order to win that first project, keep in mind that several senior officers, possibly in different business units, can pool their discretionary budgets to fund the initial validation program.

Test groups, stand-alone business units or key distributors/suppliers are safe places to propose running that first pilot project.

This is where your patience and diligence pays off. Throughout your business development efforts, you’ve created access to stakeholders and visibility within each of its divisions, subsidiaries or business lines.

You don’t have to depend upon that champion, willing to invest discretionary funds in a pilot, to make introductions for you. You have already had discussions with various stakeholders around the decision and know their view of your company’s services.

Decoding information on public companies may be daunting, but it is readily available and is reported consistently from one company to another.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Catherine McQuaid
Customer Discovery, Lean Sales practitioner 1. Repeatable, scalable sales processes 2. Market-tested hypotheses = data-informed decisions


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