“Consumers are statistics. Customers are people.”
H. Stanley Marcus.
The key OSS buying decision for customers is, “Do I have enough information to make a useful decision. If not, what would I need to know to know or what would I need to see to make a decision?”
Understand what the barriers to saying yes are.
An OSS is an expensive tool that will have long-lasting ramifications within an organisation. They are often evaluated by people who don’t always have a deep understanding of OSS technology and the different products are apples-for-oranges so direct comparison is almost impossible. The vendor must bring tools to provide quantitative comparison. That’s where benchmarking comes in again.
What demonstrable metrics can be provided to present a set of benefits that make it easy for the customer to say yes? What are the customers’ biggest fears? Is it that the product won’t meet expectation? Is it that the project will blow out on time and budgets? Will testimonials, customer demonstrations or benchmarking help to overcome the fears?
Who is the person/people who can say yes? What will they potentially gain or potentially lose from making their decision?