understanding the buyer

Understanding Buying Influences

Understanding Buying Influences





Understanding Buying Influences

– We all understand the importance of asking questions in selling but do we understand the importance of Buying Influences?

In 1985 Robert Miller and Stephen Heiman changed the face of selling forever by rejecting manipulative selling tactics and instead emphasising selling as a process. The book they wrote was called Strategic Selling and it enabled the pair to build a sales training company without rival.

Miller / Heiman developed their system after observing the most successful salespeople over a long period of time. They observed 4 buying influences.

Economic Buyer





The Economic Buying Influence:

The buying influence with control of the budget, they are bottom line focused and ask the question, “how will this impact us and how will it help us execute our core strategy”… Ask about strategy and then show how your solution will help them achieve their long-term objectives.

This is the person who signs the cheques!

Remember there is always only one Economic Buying Influence per sale.

User Buyer






The User Buying Influence:

They actually use or supervise your product or service.  They will be linked personally to your solution and judge it based on the impact it will have on their specific job performance.  You should ask pain-based questions to User Buyers


Inside the Heavy Industry Factory Female Industrial Engineer Wor






The Technical Buying Influence:

They are the ‘screen-ers’ or gatekeeper. Commonly, the Technical Buyer will be the CTO, CFO, or IT Manager.  When evaluating your solution, they ask, “Does this mean I’ll have more work to do?” “Could we develop this ourselves?” or “There are other better options out there, although I don’t know them”

They can’t say “yes,” but can only say “no”.

There may be more than one Technical Buying Influence per sale

The Coach






The Coach:

Is your champion within the organisation – An individual who guides you in the sale by giving you information that you need – a sale that guarantees you not only the order, but also satisfied customers, solid references, and repeat business.

Understanding Buying Influences – The Miller Heimen System summarised!

For more information look here Miller Heiman Website

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David Doyle

David has spent 30 years in sales successfully building business from zero to acquisition. Having studied Electronics and Computer Science at DIT and Enterprise Ireland's Export Sales Development Programme, he has spent most of his time in selling technology. He is founder and Managing Director of B2B Sell and leads a small team of experienced business and technology trained sales professionals.

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