How to help clients find budget for your project

What’s the worst possible question to ask early in the discovery process?

“Do you have budget for this project?”

In 18+ years selling, I cannot think of any large deals I closed where a client had approved budget when we started the sales cycle.

Asking about budget early in the sales cycle is foolish for many reasons:

  1. If they had approved budget, they would have likely already bought

2. This question will often cause prospects to stop you in your tracks before you can qualify

3. When you are searching for budget, you are not doing the real work of uncovering problems or pain points

4. Most large projects require approval from Finance, Senior Execs, or a committee/Board. The person you are asking will likely have to go somewhere else for funding approval so this question disempowers them.

Before your champion can secure budget, you must first demonstrate the value of what you are selling.

Here’s how to do this:

  • Ask about their top priorities and the challenges they face which put those priorities at risk.
  • Demonstrate how your solution aligns to those priorities or addresses their top challenges or pain points
  • Quantify the costs of staying the same
  • Show the ROI of changing using their existing costs as a baseline for comparison
  • Once they are in agreement, work together to co-present the Business Case to any other key stakeholders who need to approve budget

When you can help clients solve a pressing problem or achieve a top goal, they will reallocate funding from low value projects or request new funding.

In today’s training video, I break down ways to address the “no budget” objection and share questions you can ask to quantify value.

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