The challenge with business-to-business sales is that the purchasing decision rarely resides solely with your contact. Instead, multiple influencers and departments are often involved.
Recently released survey data from LinkedIn provides some insight as to the departments that wield the most influence.
Based on a survey of more than 6,000 buyers and marketers at mid-sized to enterprise-level companies in seven countries, LinkedIn concludes that, generally speaking, the top departments involved in the typical buying decision are: information technology (32%), finance (31%) and business development (26%).
Of course, these results differ greatly by industry. View a chart online summarizing the top three departments per industry sector.
One of the key (and perhaps obvious) takeaways is that the department most involved in purchasing decisions often reflects the industry. In other words, the IT department is most commonly an influencer in the technology industry, while marketing wields the most clout in the marketing and advertising industry, and finance in the commercial banking industry.