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8 tips for effective win-loss analysis

8 tips for effective win-loss analysis


Product Marketing Alliance

November 04, 2020


  1. ⌞8 Tips for Effective Win-Loss Analysis

  2. Let’s get started. Andrew Peterson Clozd 2017 – PRESENT Qualtrics

    2009 – 2017 Quick Poll headphones
  3. Did you know? Austin is the second-biggest tech hub in

    the entire world behind San Jose. Source: Uber Driver
  4. What is win-loss analysis?

  5. Win-loss analysis is the practice of systematically capturing and analyzing

    the reasons why you win and lose sales opportunities. Rigorous win-loss analysis will help you confirm and prioritize both the strengths and weaknesses of your product or service offering enabling you to refine product strategy, increase marketing effectiveness, boost sales productivity, and foster org-wide strategic alignment.
  6. 8 Tips for Effective Win-Loss Analysis

  7. Alissa Lydon Sauce Labs Kevin Yanushefski Pendo David Lorti Armor

    Cloud Security Adrienne Whitten Adobe Marketo Graham Killian PSI Neha Shah Salesforce Ted Smith Zendesk Josh Parenteau Looker Jessica Bledsoe Black Swan Data Ben Scheerer VMware Danielle Oliver Kazoo
  8. 1. Acknowledge what’s at stake. Knowing why you win and

    lose is mission critical for your business and the success of your product offering. • Too many leaders rely on conjecture, assumptions, and anecdotes. • Todd Berkowitz, RVP at Gartner, said: A formal and rigorous win-loss analysis program enables better segmentation, product strategy choices, and sales enablement … those that take a more comprehensive approach have seen up to 50% improvement in win rates.
  9. 2. Secure executive sponsorship. Best-in-class win-loss programs are cross-functional initiatives

    with strong executive sponsorship. • Engage leaders from product, sales, marketing, and the c-suite. • Pool budgets from multiple teams or fund the program at the executive level. • Take into account the questions and goals/needs of each function.
  10. 3. Get direct feedback from buyers. Go straight to the

    source - actual buyers - to find out why you won or lost their business. • Bob Apollo, former EVP Sales Ops at Sybase, said: Asking the sales organization to self-report on wins and losses is as insightful as asking turkeys whether they might be inclined to vote for Christmas. • Conduct buyer interviews - it’s the richest source of win-loss insight. • Leverage a neutral third-party for the sake of bias, candor, bandwidth, etc.
  11. 4. Prioritize getting started. Starting small is better than never

    starting at all. You can improve and expand the program over time. • Consider starting small, focusing on one pocket or segment of the business. • Sanjay Puri, VP Product Marketing at Avalara, said: Start the damn program. Doesn't matter how big you make it. Start with a few interviews - two, five, ten, twenty per month - whatever number makes sense for your business and budget.
  12. 5. Tag and track key themes. Develop a methodology for

    tagging and tracking key themes across interviews. • Record and transcribe each interview. • Tag positive and negative themes that influenced the buyer’s decision. • Tag supporting quotes that give context to each theme. • Track and aggregate the themes over time and across interviews.
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  14. 6. Interpret the results in context. Apply proper context to

    your win-loss themes. Analyze them by region, product, competitor, segment, etc. • Explore your themes by outcome: What’s the story when you win? lose? • Drill into themes by region, product, competitor, customer segment, etc. • Don’t extrapolate. Pay attention to the size and scope of your sample.
  15. 7. Democratize the findings. Be transparent with the findings. Liberally

    share the interviews and themes with stakeholders across the business. • Drip published interviews to leaders in real-time, one by one. • Push relevant insights to specific functions and stakeholders. • Develop and share periodic executive summary reports. • Hold post-interview discovery calls to review large/strategic wins or losses.
  16. 8. Calibrate and expand over time. Best-in-class win-loss programs evolve

    and improve with time. As you prove the value of the program, expand your efforts. • Make continual improvements to your interview guide, sampling strategy, etc. • Steadily expand your investment to cover more of your pipeline. • Pay attention to how themes are changing over time. • Monitor ROI metrics like sales win rates, win back opportunities, etc.
  17. Additional resources. Clozd’s Win-Loss Guide Clozd’s Blog Pragmatic Marketing Gartner

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