It may be hard to imagine, but there was a time when products were just sold in physical sense and salespeople were seen as the go-to experts before any sale took place.
Consumer habits however, do change, often shifting due to technological advancements. Over the past few years, social selling has gained the attention of sales professionals looking to succeed in the altered customer purchasing landscape.
I have heard time and time again, cold calling and relationship selling are dead, as I’m sure you have, but what is really happening in the world of Business to Business sales, as we move in to a digital world?
We have been delivering B2B sales for over 20 years and in our opinion the techniques have evolved, but they still have their place within the customer life cycle. Let’s look at each technique in a little more detail.
Cold Calling – It can be a dreaded task but very rewarding.
Dialling a prospect can be a very challenging task, but it can be a valuable technique if you are successful in connecting with your prospect at the right time. Have you heard people say “Cold calling is a numbers game”? I don’t agree with that statement, as its all about timing. I mean you could make 1 call and get through to a contact with a burning need or you could make 100 calls before you have success. If you have a great offering, event etc, cold calling definately has a place within the sales process, when worked alongside other sales techniques.
Social Selling – Selling to be Found.
As we evolve into a digital world, buyers’ actions have changed. When they have a need, they do a lot more research than ever before and they only contact their sales rep once their mind is made up. It’s more important then ever to be very visible on social and to create a brand where customers will relate their requirement to your product or service.
Today, the buyer does not ‘need’, nor do they ‘want’ to meet your charming and skilled sales rep. Instead, the buyer will likely conduct their own research online, identify the companies they would like to engage with and ultimately control the process.
According to a report by Forrester, 68% of B2B customers prefer to research independently online. What does this mean? It means that the battleground for our B2B clients is clearly online.
Networking – Relationship building peer to peer
Networking is growing from strength to strength. We feel networking is a great way to promote your business, share ideas and gain powerful knowledge from likeminded individuals. We have had a lot of success with networking and feel it is a great way to gain referrals. In our local area of York, there are 15 networking groups and I’m sure there is a few more that is up and coming. In our opinion this is a real powerful technique. If you are not doing this, try it out and let us know how you get on. If you do try networking, go with an open mind, a set of goals and outcomes you want to achieve from the session.
Account Based Marketing – Working together to deliver a strategic plan
Account Based Marketing (ABM) is where Sales and Marketing work together to deliver a strategic approach that concentrates of delivering key messaging to a select number of accounts. The messaging is designed to resonate with each account, so drives a high number of MQL’s, which conversion to SQL’s are very high. When this is done well, the results are excellent!
Marketing & Sales working together?………….. Yes – I know this rarely happens and can be a scary thought, but when we say sales, it’s not sales as you might know it today. We have named a few of the tasks that can be undertaken to deliver ABM.
- Focus on pre-pipeline activities and working closely with marketing on prospects moving through the buyer’s journey.
- Responsible for inbound lead qualification in partnership with marketing programs.
- Focus on outbound prospecting and will work closely on finding top-tier accounts based on your ideal customer profile.
- Convert the opportunities into closed business and will focus on high-touch sales enablement content.
At SkyFall, we use all the above techniques within our end to end campaigns, to deliver fantastic results to our client base. Contact us today – Hello@SkyFallservices.com to find out how we can adapt the techniques to assist in delivering your business plan.