In my previous blog post, I stated that win-loss is a misnomer. Traditional Win-Loss analysis only reflects the outcome of the deal and often narrowly focuses on ‘what did we do wrong in the process’.
If you are going to make the effort and spend the resources to engage customers after a buying decision occurs, wouldn’t it make sense to determine how that buyer rationalized that outcome?
Buyers’ Insight determines just that. Its focus is to measure the things that matter most from the buyers’ perspective. Measuring these outcomes over time will allow you to stop relying on anecdotal information or a single source of “truth” (like SalesForce or sales reps).
What to Ask?
The types of questions you should ask buyers will be dependent on the goals of the organization, but a few questions should be consistent each time you run this analysis.
* Ask respondents what factors matter the most when looking for a solution
* Ask how they prioritize those factors
* Ask how your team did at conveying the value of your solution to the buyer
* Ask which competitors they were seriously exploring
You can refer to the following question to understand the construct of the ask.
These types of fundamental questions will allow you to see where your strengths and weaknesses lie from a collective buyers’ perspective. Since you have a captive audience, why not go beyond the buying engagement and query them on other critical subjects?
* Areas of improvement
* Satisfaction with customer support
If the respondent is a loss, go deeper into asking why they chose who they chose. You have no better insight to your competitors than the information you receive from their new customers.
How to Ask
The best approach to conduct this type analysis from a product management perspective is to use a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods to capture your customer information. Gaining a broad and measurable opinion of your market through a survey will allow you to quantitatively measure over time what areas in an average buyer’s journey are working or need work.
Using questions that give nominal, ordinal, and interval scaling answers will allow you to rank, rate, and average the results of your wins and losses to give you a broader perspective of your market. The results of this analysis will give you an objective and consistent approach for your organization to measure and reference over time. The questions should always be communicated from the respondent’s point of view to improve clarity and honest feedback.
Numbers and averages are only half of the story. In order to gain further insight, you have to get on the phone and have a conversation with some of your survey respondents. This qualitative approach will ensure two things: it validates the results from the survey and you dive deeper into their meaning. As important as survey results are, they only tell you where the issues lie. Asking secondary and tertiary questions that clarify the specifics of the issue identified in the survey will be the Aha moment!
The bottom line is to ask more than ‘why did we win? or why did we lose?’. Ask nuanced questions. Collect them over time. Aggregate them and form an objective source of truth.
Why You Ask
If conducted consistently, the market data you gain will allow your organization to make critical decisions on strategic variables like pricing, product roadmap, and competitive response.