The recent news has brought the conflict of interest back in the spotlight.
Thank goodness, we missed it so much…
But what the media don’t know is that there’s also a sort of “reverse”, occult conflict of interest, against which the b2b seller fights every day.
Nothing to do with contracts and major works.
Nor bribes and things like that.
And it works “backwards”.
What is it?
I’m talking about the previous article with a list of the 20 most common reasons why customers don’t buy:
It was assumed there that the buyer acts in the sole interest of the company (except for point 19).
In reality, it is never 100% so.
Whoever buys in B2B is ALWAYS influenced by a personal interest.
Like it or not, the decision-maker, while evaluating a purchase thinking about the right thing for his company, is equally concerned (sometimes even more) about himself.
And then the “reverse conflict of interest” can occur, in the sense that the decision-maker puts himself sideways in order not to move things forward.
There are 3 possible causes:
- FEAR OF WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW
It happens when the decision-maker doesn’t understand anything about your product. Even if he realizes that the company would benefit from it, the idea of having to start managing something unknown holds him back.
Example: who knows how many decision makers have obstructed the transition in the company from the old typewriters to the first PCs.
Personal concern wins over corporate good.
- AVOIDING TROUBLES
It happens when the adoption of a new product or a new methodology involves an initial effort.
Example: our customers selling management software say that the main competitor isn’t another management software, but … Excel! Those who have been managing warehouses and accounting with Excel for years, they don’t want to change the way they work. Even if it’ll get better afterwards.
Personal concern wins over the good of the company.
- FEAR OF LOSING POWER
It happens when the decision-maker feels his role is impoverished: “What will happen to my job?”. Yet he knows that he alone will produce a tenth of what the company would achieve with external help.
Examples: the Credit Manager who could outsource a debt collection service; the Marketing Manager who evaluates a marketing consultant; the Head of the Purchasing Office who evaluates the hiring of an outsourcer who reduces expenses.
Personal concern wins over the corporate good.
*** Let’s move on to practice: ***
How can we discover these concerns in the buyer?
And how should we behave?
I’ll go into these issues in depth in the emerging monthly print publication dedicated to Marketing and Sales.
So far, I have said too little for you to evaluate the product. But if you want to guarantee the right to the discount that will be offered during the launch days, we have prepared a “VIP List”.
It’s not a waiting list.
It’s not a reservation.
It doesn’t commit in any way to the purchase.
And you’ll not end up on TV on the Hyenas as a victim of a collective rip-off.
It’s just like releasing a GOOD DISCOUNT, to be used if you decide to buy the product.
But if you still don’t trust me, don’t sign up.