Selling Is A Lot Easier When Someone Else Does It For You

In These Days of Committee Buying, Identifying Potential Internal Advocates Is Crucial

we find someone within the company who has the power to do the pitching for your company. This is our Advocacy Program, one of the programs we use to help you generate, qualify and close leads.

Why Do I Need An Advocate?

It's more difficult than ever for sales reps to communicate your product message to potential businesses. Company purchasers are tired of fielding unrequested sales calls and pitches. Often times their phone calls are never answered or sales representatives can't secure meetings for demonstrations or other educational/promotional events. This is especially true in industries that are becoming more restrictive about being marketed to in general such as medical and government. An advocate is a purchasing influencer within a company who is most likely to engage with salespeople. As part of our lead generating process, we can overlay specific approaches that will help you first to find these people, then give your sales representatives mutually beneficial ways to demonstrate your company's value within their organization.

One Sure Way to Recruit An Advocate To Sell Your Product Internally

While a free trial is common in many industries, it's rarely used correctly or extensively enough. Most of the time, this technique is used later in the sales process as a closing tool, or there are more restrictions than necessary. The above company has a product that is conservatively valued at hundreds of dollars, but is willing to provide it to individuals within organizations for a full two months with purchase of the product at half the list price. This is coupled with a personal contact and drop-off by the sales representative, with a follow-up call to pick it up. All of these contacts provide a means of establishing a personal contact and advocacy position with a simple product sampling technique.

The Advocacy-Development Process
Depending on the product or service, we will find decision-influencers who have a reason to advocate for your product. We use a variety of techniques to find our advocates including:
  • Product sampling - We find employees interested in trying out your products or offer free products so they have experience interacting with it and manipulating it, thereby feeling more comfortable about recommending your product to those who are making purchasing decisions.
  • Professional Development Materials, Services & Counseling - This can range from providing needed research and reference materials, to helping your advocate with networking outside his/her organization for their own career development.
  • Benchmarking Groups - Creation of pooled anonymous data among your customers so they can compare themselves to the whole; the individual data is never revealed, even to your organization, to encourage sharing. Those who give data, get data and are typically in more strategic roles who can become advocates.
  • Ultra Product/Service Reviews – Going beyond what are often perceived as biased or self-serving reviews, these in-depth product/service analyses provide true buying insights and tools. Interestingly, they do not have to be about your products as long as they are purchased by the same group as yours (in other words, another product/service in your category that you don't provide but is still interesting to your buyers). Hence, they can be more detailed and objective.
  • Training Sponsorship - We can also sponsor relevant training sessions and workshops and promote your brand throughout the session activities. We can then find potential advocates who are familiar with your brand and offerings. We can promote continuing education courses for individuals or entire companies where we can find potential advocates for your company.

These are a few ways we find advocates and then educate them on your product. If you use reps or market through distributors/wholesalers, we coordinate the program with them (via your CRM or sales tracking software) so they nurture the relationship. The key is to continue to communicate with your advocates giving them new personal development and project support tools to keep them up-to-date on new products and services and maintain positive marketing campaigns for your company.