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Sunday, August 05, 2012

The end of solution selling and construction marketing

At, I report on an intriguing Harvard Business Review paper suggesting that "solution selling" -- the mantra of the 1980s and 90s and still much a part of the sales training lexicon today -- has gone the way of other outmoded selling concepts, in part because the potential clients already have the answers the "solution sellers" are purporting to provide.

The argument is that effective selling (vs. price-based order taking) has moved further up the marketing cycle; that you really need to be able to identify clients and assess circumstances even before the "needs" are obvious.  Hard to do, you might say, but I've been finding a few examples of contractors who appear to have discovered the way to get ahead of the crowd with useful innovation, resources, and in some cases, highly valuable (but proprietary) information.

I'm working on this stuff with Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) colleagues for an upcoming issue of The SMPS Marketer, and hope to be able to share some of the observations in blog postings in the weeks ahead.

In the meantime, what do you think about the arguments here.

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