Effective B2B selling requires more research and planning than traditional B2C selling. Typically, the sales cycle is longer and you frequently face the challenge of interacting with multiple stakeholders at the company until getting to a final decision maker. But, it’s also some of the most rewarding sales work one can do. Particularly when you close a massive deal that took 18 months to bring to fruition. Learning, understanding and executing the most effective B2B sales techniques will help you become more effective at building trust with prospects and close more deals.
Know the company before you reach out! Do your research and understand everything you can about your prospect prior to that initial outreach. Pay specific attention to potential challenges and possible pain points the prospect may have so that you can position your product or service as a solution to those challenges.
Define everything that you can about your ideal customer, from demography to personality types, and they type of language they use. Hell, you can even give them a name. Use this to guide you in targeting leads who are the best fit for your product. This maximizes the results of your outreach campaigns as you won’t waste time on dead-end prospects.
Know your product better than anyone. Know it inside and out. Be able to demo it with your eyes closed and your hands tied behind your back. Chameleon your demo to fit the exact use case of your prospect. This will generate extreme credibility for you and your brand, which will help you close deals effectively and grow your reputation by referral.
When you conduct deep dive research into a prospect before making a call, you’ll ensure that you bring relevant and helpful information to the conversation. If you know their challenges before they share them with you, you’ll be able to present solutions to them off the top of your head, right in the moment. You will also be able to speak their language from the beginning making you familiar from the start.
If there are sensitive issues that could potentially derail the sale down the line, it’s better to ask those when you first begin a dialogue. It’s much better to scrap a deal in the early stages than to invest loads of time into moving a deal along, only to find out later that the answers to those difficult questions killed the deal.
Share customer success stories that relate to them! Get referrals from clients that you supported through to success and share them with prospects. People will always be more likely to believe great things about you if they come from someone else. There’s what you say about what you do, and then there is what others say about what you do.
Nobody likes a pushy salesperson. People enjoy being educated and taught about solutions in away self-discovery manner. The temptation to close a sale as quickly as possible is strong, but that’s not a sustainable game plan. Recurring revenue is important to B2Bs, so focus on closing a sale with a happy customer, rather than rushing through the deal and closing it as quickly as possible, only to find them cancelling after a few months. In construction they say measure twice and cut once!
Move the focus of your prospect conversations away from the price point. B2B Sales is all about value, solutions and ROI. Instead, lead with the benefits they will receive from your product or service. How much time and resources will it save them? Know your numbers like the back of your hand here. Convince them they can’t live without it and price will be a non-issue. This is among the most effective B2B selling strategies that you could adopt.
Help your prospect gain clarity on their need, pain-point or challenge that needs to be solved. Next, present them with your solution to their problem by explaining how your product or service will fulfil their need. Products can be abstract. Solutions, if positioned properly, resonate with prospects by letting them envision how it would help them in their actual, real-world context. No one cares if your product solves a problem they don’t have.
You may have heard that you should bypass influencers and skip straight to the decision makers. In fact, that’s not the case. If you transform power users and other internal influencers into advocates of your solution, you’ll find it much easier to get an audience with the C-level decision maker.
The B2B sales cycle takes much longer than B2C. The larger the sale the longer the cycle. It’s common that a lead you speak to today won’t be ready to make a buy decision until next year. Don’t toss cold leads out the window in frustration. Rather, hang onto them and circle back periodically to check in and see how their situation has evolved since you last spoke. Many a deal are won on follow up alone. It’s a last man standing game.
Even if you have to acknowledge an error of your own of your company’s, it’s much better to be available and respond than to appear unengaged. Otherwise, you won’t be seen as authentic. And although it’s with customers, not prospects, rest assured that prospects are watching.
Sales is the lifeblood of any organization. Having a team of passionate, knowledgeable sales experts conduct your sales is a MUST. In today’s world there really aren’t any unicorn products. Someone else is selling the same thing you are. The difference in you and them boils down to who will get the customer and who will keep the customer. That’s why outsourcing a function like sales to a sales performance expert, like Leading Edge Connections, produces a strong strategic advantage in expertise, ramp time, execution and ROI.