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Objective-Based Selling with Tibor Shanto [Episode 688]

Tibor Shanto, B2B prospecting and sales expert, and author of the ebooks, Sales Happen in Time and Execution: Everything Else Is Just Talk, joins me again on this episode.


  • Tibor teaches objective-based selling to bring in new customers based on their goals, not on their pain points. Look to help prospects to meet their objectives. Tibor explains the concept of the disintermediation of sales.
  • The no-decision decision results from bad discovery and qualification. Tibor advises sellers to look for context for their prospects. Andy advises them to ask the questions to truly understand. Show the value of the offer to them.
  • It is essential to understand the customer’s business, independent of the product offering. Read The 10-day MBA or equivalent, to learn your prospect’s business processes. Why do CEOs make the decisions they do?
  • When your prospect knows that you understand what they’re saying, they will open up to you. You need to have conversations with the upper-level decision makers who will know your offer’s value to their company.
  • Buyers are finding their buying cycles are twice as long as they anticipated — partly because of their infrequency of purchasing, partly because reps do not provide enough value to their process. Improve your discovery quality.
  • CB Insights lists points where the buying cycle fails: 1) no internal agreement on the issue; 2) no agreement on whether or how to address the issue; 3) no agreement on vendor selection. Point 3) is the least likely failure point.
  • Andy simplifies it further: 1) the go/no-go decision; 2) vendor selection. Point 1) is largely product-free. If you reach the prospect at point 1), you can greatly influence point 2). Win the sale by showing them how to get to “go.”
  • Go to the prospect with a blank canvas. If you get them to decide between go and no-go or help shape their buying vision, you are in the lead. It takes serious work to get to that point. Tibor walks through an example conversation.
  • Qualification doesn’t happen in the first call. Start with a gap analysis. Quantify the impact of customer objectives. This conversation must take place with a senior person. An SDR cannot qualify your lead. It is a continual process.
  • A good salesperson will disqualify opportunities when prospecting. Aim your questions to disqualify. Be very disciplined and rigid about disqualifying in the first call.
  • Leads are recyclable. They may qualify later. Visit with people who are ready to sign a check this quarter. Use key criteria to find the ideal customer profile. Take notes. Address comments that interest you when you reply.
  • We all have 24 hours in a day. Manage your activities, not your time. Look for your KPIs to do during the day and sales cycle. Time is your investment capital. Spend it well. Email Tibor for his ebook on time, Sales Happen in Time.