Women in Sales Blog

The 2 Types of Influencers Sales People Work with in the Sales Process and How to Get to the DM

Posted by Jun 18, 2014 12:54:31 PM Ali Powell

Most of us have been there. You get on the phone or get to your meeting and realize that the person you are speaking with is not the right person. They don't know what they are talking about. They have no decision making abilities and they don't know why they are there. 

I have come across these kinds of people over the time being here and have figured out some easy ways to get out of the meeting and get a meeting with the DM so you don't waste your time in the wrong places. 

The influencer who doesn't have a clue why they are in a meeting with you.


They were told that they had to take a meeting with you and seem clueless as to why they are there. They are not really sure why they are meeting with you and can't answer any of your questions that you are asking them. They were told to do the meeting for the DM to "learn more" and then they will take that information back. 

There are some tactics you can take to get this person off the phone and get the meeting with the right person who can help you and can make decisions. 

  • As you start talking to them you realize they don't have any answers to your questions. Tell them that you aren't trying to be rude and don't mean to put them on the spot but need some answers to be able to see if what you do would actually be an answer to their problems and needs. 

  • Explain to them what typical calls or meetings go like and explain that you are going to ask them questions that they might not know the answer to. See what they say here. Sometimes they will start to break down a bit and laugh, maybe tell you that you are right and that they don't know the answers. 

  • Ask her to see if the DM can join the call. Ask them if they have access to their calendar.

  • Find out why she is in the meeting in the first place to gauge what you should do from there. If she was told to do the meeting, ask why. Don't assume things. It is probably because the DM was "too busy" to take your call so he asked her to do it. That is not fair to you. Ask to speak with the DM.

  • Gain knowledge on anything. She can tell you some things so ask her questions that she will know the answer to. If her job remotely involves things that you sell into then ask her questions and find out some things about the environment that you are dealing with so you have some context when you do speak with the DM.

 The influencer who actually would be using your product/service but can't make buying decisions. get_to_the_DM-202987-edited

  • This person actually is on the team that you sell into. They do know a thing or two about what you are talking about.

  • They do know why you are talking and could have reached out to you their selves to talk and understand what you do. 

  • You can get a lot of information out of them. So start by assessing the situation and seeing if what you do can actually help. Don't brush this person off as this person could be the one who gets you through to the DM in the first place.

  • I have sold many deals where the conversation started with the influencer but the DM wasn't on the calls at first. If you show value and solve their problems they will likely get the DM involved when they deem that the situation is ready for that.

  • Respect this person and their internal process for how they research and buy things. If you don't talk to them you might not actually get the chance to sell. So if you brush them off you might be brushing off this potential deal too early.

  • Go through the sales process with them and ask questions about how they assess things. Find out what her job is and how it relates to what you sell. Find out about the rest of the team to gain context for other meetings to come. 

  • Figure out what happens after your conversations with her and how you can get the DM on the phone. Learn their process and then gauge what you should do from there. Be respectful always but also teach her. 

  • A lot of times the influencer is a gatherer. They are gathering information for their team to discuss it. They might be assessing lots of options so find out those things. 

  • Be their biggest supporter. Ask questions on how you can help them to explain the value of this. If they like what they are hearing and seeing ask them what they will do when they explain. Do they need help? Can you help her explain it? Find out from the influencer how you can help to get the rest of the team on the phone or in a meeting to discuss. 

What other types of influencers do you find you run into in the sales process? How do you deal with influencers to get through to the right person? How do you influence the influencer to get the decison maker involved?

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Topics: smart sales, smart marketing, marketing automation, influencers, DM and influencer, decision makers

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