The Need for Outside-In™

Outside-In™ is our research backed perspective on why you must place the focus on the buying journey lifecycle if you are to sell effectively.

What is Outside-In™?

In no uncertain terms, buyers are buying differently. Long gone are the days of the single decision maker or when individuals could be managed through a sales process. Today’s buyers are more empowered, more informed, more overwhelmed with choices, and feel they lack time and resources to commit to a purchase. A new approach is needed to sales, and ultimately, to revenue generation and all customer-facing approaches.

Outside-In™ is our research backed perspective on why you must place the focus on the buying journey lifecycle if you are to sell effectively. By inverting the traditional focus placed on the steps of a sales process, Outside-In™ uses the voice of the customer to find how all customer-facing roles can be aligned to, engage in, and stay engaged throughout the buying journey, allowing an organization to navigate customers to a successful purchase and beyond.

Why Traditional Approaches Fail

Over the past 25 years, Market-Partners Inc. has been researching how businesses and individuals actually go about buying. Our perspective on what constitutes a “buying decision” extends beyond deciding to issue a purchase order or pull out a credit card. In fact, it constitutes the entire lifecycle by which a business or individual becomes aware of an offering, develops interest in it, makes a commitment to acquire and then to adopt it.

Our work has clearly shown that you may have the best product out there, with unquestionable value to your customer, but this alone does not lead to success. Revenue only comes when a customer buys something. Not from customers that are interested, or those that will buy one day, but those that fully navigate the complex journey that is required to move an organization from interest, through to commitment, and acquisition. Yet that journey, along with the buyer’s underlying needs and expectations, remains largely unknown by many organizations.

We find that most sales and marketing departments have become very adept at positioning their offerings, presenting value propositions that can pique a prospect’s interest. However, after gaining that interest, the buyer is left to navigate their journey on their own. Little consideration is given to how customer-facing roles could more meaningfully support the prospect in their buying activities beyond reinforcing those same value propositions. As a result, many buyers either delay or see no reason at all to engage with your organization when making a purchase decision.

Key Insights


Customers do not reach out to sales until they are more than 50% of they way through their market's buying journey lifecycle


Organizations are involved in less than 10% of their market's buying journey lifecycle


90% of buying concerns go unaddressed by sales and marketing.

What Makes Outside-In™ Different

The good news is that our research also shows that buyers, within a particular market, buy in remarkably similar ways. These recognizable patterns formulate a map of what we call “Customer Buying Journey DNA”. While the elements, or strands, of the Customer Buying Journey DNA are common to all buyers, the DNA itself is unique to a particular market. In fact, we would now argue that the very definition of a market should be a group of buyers with common Buyer DNA. We published these finds in the best-selling book, How Customers Buy…& Why They Don’t.

Armed with a deep understanding of a market’s specific buying journey, all customer facing roles can be aligned to engage in, and stay engaged in, the entire buying journey lifecycle, delivering value and relevance each step of the way. We call this framework Outside-In Revenue Generation™ – looking beyond the internal view of how you sell, to the external reality of how your customers buy.