An interesting viewpoint arose recently in a B2B sales and customer classification process workshop we facilitated. It was a viewpoint that challenged one of our well-cherished beliefs. And a viewpoint with more than a modicum of credibility. The industry background is supply into retail pharmacy, but the same conundrum would apply to other sectors whereby the end reseller (in this case, the retail pharmacy) may have less supplier choice discretion than another superficially similar type pharmacy.
I have previously written about the notion of good data, namely CV (current value) and PV (potential value) gathered for all customers in a given customer base, as integral to objective, scientific and robust customer classification. The power of this approach is that all customers can be considered relative to each other and on the same “playing field”, based on the numerics of both data points….their CV and their PV. Idea being that if two hypothetical customers (let’s stick with retail pharmacies) have identical CV and also identical PV, then they are for all intents and purposes classified as identical.
But is there ever a case that $10,000 of pharmacy A’s CV, NOT of identical value to pharmacy B’s $10,000 of CV (forgetting the role and impact of PV for now)?
Yes! Came the response in this workshop. “What if pharmacy A is an independent and can buy from suppliers of choice, without decision making interference from elsewhere? And what if pharmacy B, with identical CV was not allowed to buy totally freely from suppliers of choice, because of such choice being at least partially vested in a higher decision making and controlling entity (like we would see in a franchisor – franchisee scenario)?” Our enthusiastic workshop participant did not stop there. “And what if next week, pharmacy B was to completely lose all CV, due to a single stroke and all-controlling supplier of choice decision made from above and handed down for dutiful and obedient compliance?”
To what extent does our B2B sales process workshopper have a valid case to support the notion that a dollar of CV is sometimes something less than a dollar?
Tune in next week to see the answer.