Sellers are having to work harder than ever before, and the hardest part of any sale is getting stakeholders on board.

In the B2B market, it is hard to get a sale without multiple decision makers. And in this day and age, it has become an important selling strategy.

The only way to make it work is by tailoring your discovery process for the whole organization. Focus on how you can help them, and they will in turn want to give back.

Here are six key questions you need to ask your clients. They will help get at the core of how your services can benefit a company

The Problem

The more time I spend in the sales industry, the more lines of products and services are being developed. What complicates things is that often there’s so much overlap between teams that a prospect doesn’t know who should be involved.

Let me share my experience with you. I work for a company that primarily sells to marketing teams, but our content marketing services can impact other departments as well.

I was talking to a prospective client whose organizational goal is revenue. I asked what KPI the marketing department had set for themselves, and they told me that traffic on their website needed to increase but also said it’s hard attracting qualified candidates.

I was glad she had brought up these two departments because it showed me that they needed to be in on the conversation. They were part of this goal and I felt like my company could provide support for them too.

6 Important Questions to Finalize Cross Departmental Deals

Now that we know the problem, let’s take a look at six questions to ask in this situation.

What is the company’s guiding principle?

When you speak to a prospect, the person at the top of their company cares about larger problems. Unless your services can solve these high-level issues from the C-suite perspective, they’re probably not going to buy.

Ask the person who is in charge of hiring what their company’s goals are. If they don’t know, ask for someone else to help you understand how the organization works.

With this information you’ll be able to sell your products or services to the entire company, not just one department.

What are the company’s biggest hurdles on the way to that North Star?

Is the company ready to take on its main goal?

Have you ever felt that your current company doesn’t have the budget for all of your services because they don’t see how it will help them work towards their North Star?

Employees don’t always know how to use the tools that are in place. It’s important for managers to teach them how they can be most effective with those resources.

Ask questions like this to figure out what the biggest obstacle is for them. This will help you identify how your service can be different from others so they can overcome those hurdles.

Is each department aware of how it is working toward that guiding principle?

The best place to start is with the departments themselves. Find out whether they’re aligned and working towards their North Star goal, which should tell you a lot about what interdepartmental communication looks like.

This is a great way to assess what a company’s work environment might be like, before the employee signs on.

To find out what you’ll be doing, ask questions about the business. Specifically which departments need your skills and how they work.

For example, I would ask questions to see if they are a good fit for our content marketing services.

Do your marketing and sales teams understand each other?

Do they understand what each side is contributing to the partnership?

Is the marketing team aware of what’s most important to the sales team?

Do HR employees know how to use content from the marketing team for recruitment and training purposes?

How would you describe their internal decision-making process?

The problem is that often, decision makers are not upfront about who they are. The article says it can be seven or eight people before you get a “yes” from the company.

It’s hard to know who has the power when you’re a new employer. So ask early and often.

If you are interviewing with a company, it is up to them to make the final decision.

What are the different decision-making roles in your company?

It’s not always easy to get everyone together at the same time, but you can try arranging a meeting with them.

Try to focus on people who make the decisions rather than those lower down, and you’ll increase your chances of success.

Who is your mobilizer, and what can he or she do to assist you?

Your internal champion is your advocate, who can help you bring up the idea of hiring someone to management. Make sure that person knows how important their job is.

For example, we know our content marketing services can help sales enablement as much as marketing. So if an organization asks us to create content for them and drive inbound leads, it’s important that they also involve the head of their sales team since good content is a good way to nurture potential customers who are ready to buy.

The more people we involve in the conversation, the greater our chances of getting a contract.

Are you facilitating your mobilizers’ internal sales of your product or service?

When you’re selling your services to a company, make it easy on the person who is mobilizing sales for that department. Otherwise, they probably won’t see a fast sales cycle or close them at all.

Give your mobilizer the right content for them to get buy-in from different departments in the company. Provide blog posts, whitepapers and other types of material that show what you can do for a company.

To provide the most value, ask these important questions to your mobilizer: Article: 1. What are you looking for in an employer?

What is your company’s goal for this presentation?

What will they care about?

How committed are we to solving your problem?

What are the things that decision makers will need to see in order for them to be persuaded?

I want to be there for you, so I can’t sell our services. Also, because we offer valuable things like

Offer your company’s expertise to other departments. Provide them with advice on how they can improve their business.

Dos and Don’ts in Cross Departmental Deals

In summary, here are some key points to keep in mind when selling across departments:

When you’re trying to understand decision makers, don’t try to make assumptions about their needs.

Don’t forget to ask about internal decision makers when you are interviewing, and how they can be involved in the process.

Make sure you understand the company’s primary goal before pursuing your own goals.

Make sure you know the company’s hurdles and how your product or service can help.

You should get to know your mobilizer and make sure they have the resources and content needed.

If you only focus on one department or team, it’s hard to get ten people to say yes. Instead of focusing on just one group, try looking at the organization as a whole.

The North Star is the goal that you are trying to achieve. From there, figure out how your product or service can contribute to reaching this goal in multiple different departments and close cross-departmental sales.


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Go through a variety of filters to zero in on the leads you want to reach. This is crazy specific, but you could find all the people that match the following: 

  • A company in the Financial Services or Banking industry
  • Who have more than 10 employees
  • That spend money on Adwords
  • Who use Hubspot
  • Who currently have job openings for marketing help
  • With the role of HR Manager
  • That has only been in this role for less than 1 year
Just to give you an idea. 😀


Editors Note:

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Justin McGill
About Author: Justin McGill
This post was written by Content at Scale, a solution that uses AI + a team of optimization specialists to publish hundreds of high quality, SEO optimized content straight to your blog. It’s the first and only solution that allows you to truly scale content marketing.