<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=585972928235617&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">

The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

Stalled Target Accounts Diagnostic

stalled target accounts diagnosticSymptoms and Suggestions to move beyond the stall!

Too often sellers fail to convert new business target accounts because they stall at various points of the sales process. Here are some symptoms and suggestions designed to help sellers move beyond the stall to convert a new business target to a new business customer.


The target account has been identified, but the seller can't, or has not, set the initial meeting. 


  1. Hopefully, the seller conducts some type of process to qualify the target prospect. Here are some things to consider:
    • Dollar Potential.
    • Access. 
    • Fit.

Limited access to the decision maker might make this target too difficult to secure an appointment with. Consider finding and approaching another decision influencer to get some traction that eventually leads to the ultimate decision maker or moving this target off the list.

  1. Has the seller made any effort to set a meeting? If not, it is time to start, OR it is time to move this target off their list.

  2. Check to see if the seller is using a valid business reason to set an appointment. Does one exist? If not, create one. If one exists, is it compelling? If not, tweak it. Remember to include:
    • Empathy: The seller relates to the problem.
    • Expertise: The seller has solved similar problems.
    • Problem-Solving: The seller can develop a solution to the problem.
  1. Is a persistent and professional appointment setting plan in place? If so, review the points of contact (method and frequency). If not, get started with a persistent and professional process (7-9 points of contact over a two-week period using a valid business reason).


The seller conducted a meeting with the target, however, an assignment was not discovered. Creating a proposal is difficult without a need (assignment) that requires a solution.


  1. Review the seller's notes from their meeting. Perhaps a business need was uncovered and overlooked. If so, have the seller contact the target (phone, email, or face-to-face) to confirm that the overlooked need is worthy of a proposal. If it is, create and present a proposal. If not, see item #2.

  2. If the seller did not uncover a need (assignment), attempt to reschedule a new needs analysis. Perhaps the manger can attend to make sure a proper needs analysis is conducted. Follow these steps to isolate an assignment:
    • Summarize the uncovered needs.
    • Ask if there are any needs missing.
    • Ask the decision maker to prioritize the needs.
    • Test the top need:
      • Is it urgent?
      • Do they have money to spend?
      • Do they want your help?
    • Agree on the assignment!
  1. It is important to note that not all needs analysis meetings will result in an assignment requiring a customized solution. Some might result in a request for proposal—if so, respond accordingly.


The seller presented the proposal and the client “wants to think about it.” Too often, this is a road to nowhere. 


  1. Review this check list when the target “wants to think about” a proposal:
    • Was the proposal presented to the economic influencer (ultimate decision maker), or was it presented to a user influencer who does not have final decision-making authority? If the economic influencer was not involved, attempt to set a meeting to present the proposal with this person in the room.
    • Was a need addressed in the proposal? If so, ask if the solution included in the proposal addresses the need. Also, ask what is standing in the way of a YES. If not, find out their concerns about the solution and tweak the proposal.
    • Does the target account have money to purchase the solution? Failing to qualify is qualifying to fail! Ask the target if they have money to purchase the solution. If they do, ask for the order and close the deal! If they don’t, consider finding another target or revisit this target when they have some cash to invest in a solution. 

Sellers often fail to convert new business accounts because they could be stalled throughout the various points of the sales process. Move beyond the stall and convert by identifying the stall and finding a symptom to solve the problem.

Download How Selling Steps