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Aggressive Sales Tactics Proven Ineffective

As I read the results of this market study, it occurred to me that the core problem is systemic to many sales organizations, not just software vendors. However, salespeople who choose to speak in a sincere human voice, and clearly articulate their offering -- relative to the context of the customer's needs -- will succeed.

New research from Ovum reveals that software vendors must change their pushy sales techniques, as users need a more 'open' attitude. Ovum advises vendors to adopt an approach based on helping end-user organisations to buy and to create simple, clear and fair pricing.

"After our research note at the end of last year we received a litany of emotional responses about sales tactics and how they had been used for revenue extraction," says David Mitchell, Software Practice Leader at Ovum. "We decided that further research was needed with end-user customers, but focusing on the question: what should vendors do to make a better job of selling to you?"

After interviewing senior 'technical buyers' within 40 end-user organisations in North America, EMEA and Australia, it was apparent that end-user organisations are becoming immune to the sales tactics of vendors, the adoption of sales methodologies and the introduction of 'solution sales speak' in their organisations.

Ovum found that several phrases commonly used by vendor organisations cause immediate and adverse reaction within some end-user organisations -- "sales cycle", "owning the customer", "solution selling" and "value proposition" are among the trigger phrases.

One surprisingly common complaint was that the sales staff from vendor organisations did not understand the functionality of the products that they were selling. In some cases, the technical staff in customer/prospects were more aware of the latest product features and functions than the sales staff.

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