What is a champion in sales?

Busy? Here's the short answer:

In sales, a "Champion" is an internal advocate within the prospect's organization who passionately promotes the product or service to decision-makers, boosting the chances of closing the deal.

What is a Champion in Sales?

In sales, a "Champion" refers to an internal advocate within the prospect's organization who enthusiastically and passionately promotes a product or service to decision-makers. The role of a Champion is crucial as they play a significant part in boosting the chances of closing the deal successfully.

Key Takeaways:

  • A Champion is an internal advocate within the prospect's organization who supports and promotes the product or service to decision-makers.
  • Champions have a deep understanding of the prospect's needs and can effectively articulate the value of the offering.
  • Building strong relationships with Champions is essential for sales professionals to navigate the buying process successfully.

Understanding the Role of a Champion

Champions are the salesperson's allies within the prospect's organization. They are typically employees who have interacted with the salesperson and have developed a positive impression of the product or service. Champions see the value of the offering and genuinely believe it can address their organization's pain points or needs effectively.

The Role of Champions in the Sales Process:

  1. Advocacy and Promotion: Champions actively advocate for the product or service to key decision-makers. They proactively promote the offering, highlighting its benefits and value.

  2. Overcoming Obstacles: Champions help navigate the buying process by addressing potential objections and overcoming obstacles that may arise during the sales journey.

  3. Influencing the Decision: As internal advocates, Champions have influence and credibility within their organization. Their endorsement carries weight during the decision-making process.

  4. Providing Insights: Champions provide sales professionals with valuable insights into the prospect's needs, preferences, and pain points. This information is critical for tailoring the sales approach.

  5. Maintaining Relationships: Building strong and lasting relationships with Champions is essential. They act as a bridge between the salesperson and the organization, facilitating communication and trust.

Real-Life Examples of Champions in Sales

Let's explore real-life scenarios to understand the role of Champions in the sales process:

Example 1: The Tech Startup

A sales representative for a tech startup is selling a new software solution to a large enterprise. During the sales process, the representative builds a strong relationship with a mid-level manager in the IT department. The manager becomes a Champion for the software and is impressed with its potential to streamline operations. As a Champion, the manager advocates for the software to the C-suite executives, emphasizing its impact on efficiency and cost savings. Thanks to the Champion's endorsement, the startup secures the deal and gains a new long-term client.

Example 2: The Marketing Agency

A marketing agency is pitching their services to a growing e-commerce company. During the presentation, the agency's sales team impresses the Head of Marketing with their creative strategies and past successes. The Head of Marketing becomes the agency's Champion within the company. They speak highly of the agency's expertise and demonstrate how the partnership can lead to increased revenue and brand visibility. As a result of the Champion's endorsement, the e-commerce company chooses the agency as its marketing partner.

Example 3: The Medical Device Supplier

A medical device supplier is introducing a new surgical tool to a hospital's surgical team. The head surgeon, after testing the tool and recognizing its potential to improve patient outcomes, becomes the Champion for the supplier. The head surgeon advocates for the new tool to the hospital's administration, highlighting its benefits and cost-effectiveness. With the Champion's support, the medical device supplier secures a contract with the hospital.


Q: How can sales professionals identify Champions within a prospect's organization?

A: Identifying Champions requires active listening and observation during the sales process. Champions often express genuine enthusiasm for the product or service and actively seek to influence the decision-making process positively. They may be vocal about the benefits of the offering and show eagerness to support the salesperson's efforts.

Q: What strategies can sales professionals use to build relationships with Champions?

A: Building strong relationships with Champions involves engaging in authentic conversations, showing genuine interest in their needs and goals, and being responsive to their inquiries. Regular follow-ups and providing value-added insights can also strengthen the bond between the salesperson and the Champion.

Q: Can a Champion's role extend beyond the initial sale?

A: Absolutely. Champions can continue to be valuable advocates even after the sale. They may provide feedback and testimonials, help with customer success stories, and introduce the salesperson to other potential clients.

In conclusion, Champions play a vital role in the sales process, acting as internal advocates who passionately promote a product or service to decision-makers. By understanding their significance and cultivating strong relationships with them, sales professionals can increase their chances of closing deals successfully and fostering long-term customer relationships. Leveraging the support and influence of Champions can make a significant difference in achieving sales success in competitive markets.

Related terms...

Churn rate

"Churn rate" is the rate at which customers or subscribers stop using a product or service over a specific period. It helps businesses understand customer retention and the impact of customer attrition on their overall performance

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"Closed-lost" describes the status of a deal or opportunity that has not resulted in a successful sale. It indicates that the opportunity is closed, and the prospect decided not to proceed with the purchase.

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Challenger Sales

"Challenger sales" is a sales method that focuses on understanding the customer's business, delivering new insights, and disrupting their thinking by teaching them something, not just selling them something.

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