Let’s talk about what’s affecting your customer sales.
- What about ‘fully driverless cars’ – what else will be automated?
- And what is all this about the CLOUD, what difference will it make to your business?’
- What! 73% of Millennials are involved in B2B purchasing decisions. Currently 35% of the population, growing to 50% of the global workforce by 2020. How will the Y or head-down generation impact your business?
- With over 50% of the world on the internet and over 40% of the people on social media, this is still a tremendous opportunity?
In the last ten years of cloud, technology transfer, technology collaboration across cultures, software as a service (SAAS) and millennial buyers are a growing force. The global economic, technological and social environment has changed and is changing for both buyers and sellers.
Because of this, you cannot afford to sit and wait for the changes to hit the business. You must seek to understand the challenges facing your company and your customers. If:
90% of decision-makers will not answer cold contacts but 80% of connections in LinkedIn are open to new opportunities.
The average B2B opportunity has 5.4 decision makers involved, purchasing decisions are a social activity.
Why is all this Important?
Sales professionals are no longer required to sell and only sell if they are to embrace the challenges they must:
- Understand the macro and micro global economic, technological and social-political drivers.
- Know and develop warm relationships with influencers both in and out of the customer’s organisation.
- Understand what different value adding information each influencer and buyer requires, helping them navigate their world of choices.
- Nurture and listen for online and offline signals that your decision-maker is ready to receive information or buy.
- Utilise off and online engagement tools to get on your buyer’s radar.
- Present options, to include your competitor product, developing expert status to help your buyers make the very best decision for their organisation.
Are you tired?
Why You Must Change What You Do!
Today’s purchasing decisions require more discussion and due diligence, meaning buyers are careful to choose who they allow into the process. You need to be focused on which customers and accounts will give you the most significant return on value for your investment.
You must carefully select the most valued accounts and customers because not all customers or customer accounts are equal. Identifying which deserve resources investment is an exercise of quantifying value. How value can be maximised through collaboration and innovation. It is easy to think that the largest customer accounts as the ones ripe for your attention, however, this is not always the case.
Today’s big revenue generators can also be some of your most troublesome, least loyal and financially draining customers, or they can be significant revenue generators relative to running lean operations. Rather than a primary focus on current volume and revenue; create a selection framework that focuses on lifetime value to include the potential future net worth of a customer account.
5 Important Questions to Ask in Assessing Best Fit:
- Do they share the same values and have a willingness to collaborate and partner?
- Are they easy to do business with?
- Do they have a talented team who are capable of innovating and affecting internal change?
- Do you believe and trust in the leadership?
- Do they have untapped future potential that you can help them release?
Never forget selling is business critical activity, so choose carefully with detailed research, who you get into bed with. Sales are primarily about personal relationships, business to business is still people to people.
The way company’s sell their goods and services to other businesses, is now an organisation-wide relationship approach. It is to sell without selling. A shifting of emphasis away from short-term selling to long-term collaboration. Relationship building with identified strategic customers and accounts that can help your mutual businesses grow profit margins long into the future.
OK, let me help you out here.
Only 4% of decision-makers have a favourable impression of sales professional when reaching out cold. However, when sellers reach out through a mutual connection, favourable impression rates jump, to 87%. It is our business to create a favourable impression with buyers and decision-makers, but where do you start?
If you want to be recommended to decision-makers, you must be memorable and recommendable.
3 Ways to be Memorable and Recommendable, Creating a Favourable Impression
- People will help you when they like you. They only know they like you when you share your values, humour, character and insights or experience and from consistent impressions (touch-points) you will build trust.
- Do you enter every conversation with the thought “what can I do for help you?” This is offering valuable insight, connections or an alternative perspective, even lightening the load – Try it.
- Be 100% you and the right people will be attracted to you. Be 100% yourself, there is nothing better than when you are so comfortable with yourself, then everyone else feels comfortable and wants to play too.
Oscar Wilde said, “be yourself everyone else is already taken.”
Although technology can aid efficiency, and precise targeting of buyers, influencer and decision-makers. It cannot do the whole job. Because unless your product is a commodity and solution will be bespoke and therefore more complicated.
To educate buyers and build the required trust for their investment, you need good, old-fashioned human interaction to support the technological and social changes.