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About Vickie Sullivan

Vickie Sullivan is internationally recognized as the top market strategist for thought leaders, professional speakers and B2B professional service firms. Specializing in brand and message strategies in crowded markets, she has helped thousands of talented people outsmart their competition since 1987.

Written by: Vickie Sullivan  |  May 10, 2012

What Buyers Won’t Tell You

Sometimes I think I’m in the translation business.  I spend a lot of time explaining what buyers won’t tell us during the sales process.  One of my favorite mystery phrases:  “We’ve changed directions.”

What does that phrase really mean?  Here are a few possibilities I’ve heard from the front lines:

  • You mean that great conversation we had last week?  Oh, sorry…forgot all about it when I had another great conversation with another vendor.  Because she was the most recent discussion, I forgot about you and hired her instead.
  • Well, you were the front runner, but Mr. Big Cheese came in and said I had to hire someone else.  I don’t want you to think I don’t have the power I told you I had, so I’m going to punt and just say the direction has changed.
  • Yea, I remember you.  I almost hired you until I found three other people who do the same work for less.  Whew…almost got ripped off there.  So I hired them.  Sure, it’ll take more work but at least I can brag that I stayed under budget.

So the next time you hear that phrase, ask yourself:  Do I really want to know the back story here?  Sometimes ignorance is bliss.


About Vickie Sullivan

Vickie Sullivan is internationally recognized as the top market strategist for thought leaders, professional speakers and B2B professional service firms. Specializing in brand and message strategies in crowded markets, she has helped thousands of talented people outsmart their competition since 1987.