As we all know, sales is the lifeblood of any business but how many of us actually assess each step of the sales process to see what is working and what needs tweaking. Yes, we might look at overall conversion rates, but do we ever consider the power and importance of the negotiation process (and it is a process as you’ll hear in this episode) when we are trying to close more new business?

On this installment of the podcast we are joined by negotiation skills training & sales coaching expert Mike Lander. With a long career in procurement Mike is a poacher turned gamekeeper as he now helps sales teams understand the process that agencies go through when they buy, in order to negotiate in the right way to win more business. If you have ever been frustrated with Procurement people when you’re negotiating a deal or felt like you’re not leaving value on the table at the end of a negotiation then this is the episode for you! 

In this episode we discuss:

  • The importance of negotiation 
  • Why the role of procurement has become even more important 
  • The benefit of a strong pipeline in your negotiations 
  • The power of building relationships in advance 
  • How procurement departments actually make buying decisions  
  • How real-world events are still a big play for new business development
  • The importance of understanding your conversation metrics 
  • Why procurement wants your agency to make a profit

Word on the Street is sponsored by Tanba, The Agency New Business Academy, is a brand-new initiative aimed at equipping agencies of all sizes with the knowledge, content, partnerships and opportunities needed to accelerate agency growth by optimising their new business ‘engine’. Tanba is an on-demand and affordable solution for agencies looking to upskill their team via training courses, content and insights delivered by our panel of industry experts, leaders, and partners.   

The academy is all about empowering agency teams to get noticed, attract opportunities, increase conversion rates, and reduce the costs associated with the sales process. Visit https://tanba.io/ to find out more and start empowering your agency. 

Links & References

Katie Street: https://www.linkedin.com/in/katiestreet/

Mike Lander https://www.linkedin.com/in/mikelander/

Embrace procurement and negotiations rather than fear it – Mike Lander [7:50]

How do you increase cash reserves? You negotiate better rates and extend payment terms – Mike Lander [9:00] 

Deal size is going down – Mike Lander [9:20]  

We can never stop learning – Katie Street [11:20]

The moment you’re emotionally wedded to the outcome of a negotiation, you’re doomed – Mike Lander [13:10]

When the going gets rough it is always the new biz director everyone is looking to – Katie Street [14:25]

Your strongest alternative as a negotiator, if you can’t reach agreement, is a strong pipeline – Mike Lander [16:25]

It’s so easy to fall into that very, very unhealthy relationship of procurement, and or client, is the boss – Katie Street [18:30]

Build a relationship with procurement, but don’t do it when you’re trying to negotiate, do it 18 months in advance – Mike Lander [20:10]

I make a category plan – Mike Lander [21:10]

You need to talk to the needs of the audience and that’s not necessarily just the needs of the company, it’s the individual – Katie Street [21:45]

Don’t try to sell to them, really listen to them – Katie Street [25:40]

What’s the burning business issues, what happens if they don’t solve it, what is the timing of that, who is the budget holder – Mike Lander [26:40]

What’s my least acceptable outcome from this deal – Mike Lander [36:50]

Where are the value-add things you can give to the client that cost you very little but maintain your price point [38:30]

An agency that makes no money on a deal is a bad agency – Katie Street [40:30]

It’s all about being prepared – Katie Street [44:00]

Do the consultative sell – Katie Street [56:25]

Get in touch with Street, for a different perspective on your business.
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