Master Data Management (MDM) and Product Information Management (PIM) solutions are, as many other enabling technologies, often purchased using a formal Request for Proposal (RFP) process.
In such a process the theory is that the buying organization, often with the help from an external consultancy, states the functional and non-functional requirements, measure the solutions against these requirements using a weighted score model and then objectively selects the solution with the highest score.
In practice there are in my experience some more subjective and soft sides to this process. This is not at least the case in the longlist/shortlist phase and when taking the final decision. I have seen my share of overruling the scoring.
One aspect is the geographical presence of the vendor. This includes where the solution provider is based and of course also the presence around the world through local offices and partner network as told in the post Mapping MDM and PIM Solutions.
Another aspect is the subject matter expertise shown by the vendor. This includes written material provided but also available on website and blogs and of course during presentations. An example could be the emphasis on master data versus product information as exemplified in the post MDM, PIM or Both.
I have had the fortunate opportunity of being at both sides of the table during the years and are still doing that as shown in the article about Popular Offerings.