B2B Future Sales

Released 23.3.2013

What is the future for Sales and Marketing especially in B2B? I was attending as a panelist in Porvoo yesterday, 22.3.2013 where “Encounters” event took place. One of the last topic was about how to survive in tourism sales and marketing in the future. All four panelists were having some kind of personal experiences and opinion of what is coming. 

I have always cherished three main issues in customer relationships and running a company. Those are:

Questioning and Listening

Focus in on the Customer

ROI – Return On Investment

Those are not gliding away even technically eCommerce and Social Media have coming involved. Those are for me only ways of doing my work and contacting people to keep at the same time my company running. I was gathering here some future ideas of B2B Sales. How the others do see this.

Jacco van der Kooi:

He says: “Tradiotional Sales is Proving to be an Ineffective way of doing Business. He insists that Sales Teams start Creating Value by solving a Client’s Problems. He has found 10 topics in this issue as follows:

  1. Out of every 2 sales persons in US will be liminated

Due to increase in online sales (transactional)

Change in tools that make selling more efficient. Companies like Nimble, Slide  Rockeket are examples)

Sales will be removed from job titles

2. Sales Focus Will Shift to Value Creastion

Gain in depth knowledge about your client’s needs, beyond to what your solution offers.

It is not about problem solving, it is about what value does your solution/service create

From a hierarchical model around quota roll-up in response to what you sold to a flat soccer team like organization around “who can help you create value”

3. Customers will only communicate with people they trust

Importance on LinkedIn connections providing context and transparency

Having a great personal 2brand name” with result in higher compensation

Expect first LinkedIn Group to be sold for 1,000.000 euros.

4.  Senior Executives Will Do Their Own "Cold-Calling"

With an increased focus on relationships, and your clients demanding insights in their business;

             Inside sales teams will be unable to obtain credibility and efficiency with drop below? ROI

             Instead executives will be asked to leverage their credibility & do Exec-to-Exec cold calling

5. Social Media will be the Critical Forecasting Metric

Social media provides a view deeper into a funnel

Social media provides statistical data based on views, mentions, likes etc. to compliment  a sales persons input

For SaaS (= Software as a Service) based business, all forecasting will originate based on social media statistics

6. 90 % of Field Sales Activity Becomes "Virtual

For sales, instead of spending time on the road, spend it on research & preparation

Instead of setting a date 2 mo’s now why not send them sophisticated in depth research that can be viewed at their time/location, with voice over!

Virtual selling scales significantly better both in quantity and quality

7. Inside Sales Will Ceast to Exits

Inside Sales function will become “Client intelligence”, similar to how Account Managers have  turned into Success Managers. Client intelligence is responsible for

             Obtaining valuable information for the client such as market research    

8. Sales Will Communicate Mostly in Visuals & Emotions

You have to stand-out, through “Hollywood” quality content, made possible through new tools

You are building “content magnets” to find the same needle in a a way larger haystack

The rise of a new sales co-lateral “video Graphic”

9. Sales will have the most sophisticated training

The new professionals will obtain the same “level” of training as top athletes

             frequent

             instant

             focused on 1 skills at a time, and

             goal driven

10. Sales Will Be Compensated on the Quantity and Quality of LinkedIn Connections

Social media exposure can act as the voice of the market validating the role as sales person plays

             Connections

             Views

             Engagement

 

From: Glance blog

“(Technology) has changed the way we talk to business decision-makers. Being at work is no longer a place; it is a state of mind, a kind of continuing oscillation that people are making between their work life and their personal life.”

From: Glance blog

Marketing is about to claim the high ground in most B2B scenarios. They will take responsibility for not only lead generation, but also “presentation” That is quality of website design, functionality, and performance. This is the first point of contact now for all those “crazy, busy buyers” who have already almost made up their minds, and just want to choose a vendor. They are now entering the sales/buying cycle 80 percent up the curve.

After that, new teams will be created to build brick walls around existing customers – proactive customer care teams. This is what Sales 3.0 will be all about.

Technical support functions will also continue to grow in importance to support the other two areas, because customers want instant fixes and reliable backup.

 

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