The analysts possess a wealth of information that can help vendor sales organizations better understand their prospects. The question is how to get the information from the analysts. SageCircle has put together a simple process and checklist that AR can use to conduct a structured inquiry with key analysts to collect and organize important information about your prospects. The process is simple. Schedule an inquiry with one or two of your Tier 1 analysts (with whom you have Inquiry privileges). Use the questions on the Prospect Profile checklist to gather information from the analyst and enter the responses into the form. After finishing the inquiry, complete the form and forward it to sales.
There are two main categories of input that you are looking for: “Analyst’s Perceptions about the Prospect or its Peer Group” and “Analyst’s Perceptions about Your Differentiation in this Situation.” Within each main category there are sub questions like market, prospect and business challenges.
Besides obtaining valuable information and insights for your sales teams, using this technique is also a great way to improve your relationships with key analysts. As we mentioned in SageCircle’s “Analyst Hierarchy of Needs”, analysts want to feel that they have contributed to the success of a vendor. By providing analysts with multiple opportunities to provide input, whether on company strategy, or insights about prospects, AR professionals can ensure that analysts feel like they are “part of the team” and have an emotional stake in the vendor’s success.
- Create (or request from SageCircle) a Prospect Profile form
- Contact the appropriate executive in your sales organization to identify important prospects targeted by sales for the next quarter
- Schedule inquiries with Tier 1 analysts who cover the targeted prospect’s market
- Conduct the inquiries, prepare and distribute the Prospect Profile
- Track the impact of the Prospect Profile efforts in order to determine its efficacy
- Report on any sales opportunities that are positively impacted by the technique
- Use successes as a means to build stronger relationships with your sales organization
Bottom Line: One technique used by effective AR programs to drive sales is to leverage analyst information to form a more rounded picture about prospects. The SageCircle technique “Prospect Profile Form” can be used to collect important information about targeted prospects from your Tier 1 analysts, and provide the information to your sales organization to help drive sales opportunities.
Question: How do you use the analysts to support your sales team?