Ray Collis

The Customer’s Hidden Agenda

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Is Your Needs Analysis Only Scraping The Surface?

After you have discovered the customer’s hidden agenda become an advocate for what the customer is passionate and emotional about, rather than simply a salesperson for your product, or solution.  

Connecting With The Hidden Agenda

Connecting with the buyer’s hidden agenda means that the salesperson strives to act as:

  • A champion of your customers values and ideals
  • An ambassador for their vision and mission
  • A counselor in respect of their fears
  • A bulwark in terms of their risks and vulnerabilities.


Finding The Hidden Agenda – A Test For You

Go beyond stated requirements to uncover the hidden agenda – the fundamental underlying motives of the buyer. Really get to know the buyer and what makes him or her think.

Here is a test of whether you understand your customer’s hidden agenda.   How many of the following questions can you answer (and relate your product, or solution to):

  1. What is it that matters most to them?
  2. What is it that fuels the buyer and his-her business, or project?
  3. What keeps the buyer awake at night?
  4. What gets the buyer out of bed in the morning?
  5. What is the buyer’s greatest hope, greatest frustration?
  6. What is his or her source of greatest pride?
  7. How do they imagine their future?
  8. What is the buyer’s soft underbelly in terms of sensitivity, embarrassment, defensiveness and ego?
  9. Who do they admire aspire to be, or dread becoming?
  10. What are their core values?

So, how many of the above could you answer?  Discovering the buyer’s hidden emotional agenda is often a work in progress – it requires continual effort.


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