The right buying cycles are those that will be profitable, in either the immediate term or ultimately as part of the customer relationship.
Deep understanding of the customer or prospect is key to the second challenge facing sellers - managing customer and prospect progress through the buying cycle. Management of the cycle begins with clearly identifying who we want entering and continuing in the cycle. Identifying those customers and prospects who will be profitable, either for the individual sale or in the total relationship, must be the near-exclusive focus of efforts to manage a buying cycle.
The bad news is that creating deep understanding and actively managing the buying cycle based on that understanding is hard work and time-consuming. The good news is that technology, analytic methods and increasing skills of people in our organizations make it more possible than ever before.
One thing is certain: a company that does not develop a deep understanding of customers and actively manage the buying cycle risks being drowned by a flood controlled by customers, many of whom they don't know about or may not even want.