Over the years B2B Solutions Sales has evolved, today in abundance of digital information and publicly available data, organizations are defining solutions for their requirements and circumventing ways to ditch sales reps.
Traditional method of B2B solutions sales of identifying customers with recognized problem, prioritizing one's willing to act, asking set of questions to gain hook, to attach their companies solutions to the problem, and highlighting advantages of their solutions, in comparison to competition, are no longer working.
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Today, majority of B2B customers are researching solutions, weighing options, benchmarking pricing, and outlining requirements, before even having a conversation with sales reps.
From technology to insurance to business process outsourcing, B2B customers are often ahead of sales teams helping them. They are coming to sales discussions, armed with detailed specs and through understanding of their requirements.
B2B Sales professional, applying traditional selling techniques, based on the premise, that salespeople should lead with open-ended questions, designed to surface recognized customer needs, are increasingly finding it difficult to make headway with their sales pitches.
This disruptive environment has given rise to B2B Sales Specialist, a super star doubling on performance and pulling ahead. They accounted to 40% of high performers and close to 54% in complex B2B insight driven solutions sales. Globally sales professionals are categorised into five profiles. Relationship Builder, Problem Solver, Hard Worker, Lone Wolf and Challenger. Sales specialist are more likely to hybrid of relationship builder, lone wolf and challenger. They are willing to upend customers current practice, pushing them outside their comfort zones, leading with disruptive ideas, making customers aware of future needs and gently nurturing them towards desired outcome.
According to a study B2B customers appreciate vendors ability to provide new insight and is one of the biggest reasons of customers loyalty.
Star B2B Sales Professionals (20% in terms of quota attainment), have abandoned the traditional B2B sales playbook completely and devised a novel, even radical, sales approach built on the three strategies.
Today a star B2B Sales professional turns conversations into making customers aware of emerging needs and nurturing them towards a desired outcome. Establishing a demand for their solutions and services in state of flux. Instead of taking a conventional sales approach, he uses an “insight solution selling” strategy, challenging customers recognized needs, pushing them outside their comfort zone, making them aware of future needs and revealing needs that they didn’t know they had.
B2B enterprise sales consists of multiple stakeholders having primary posture towards organizational change and working with vendors, consisting of two categories - Talkers ( Guides, Friends, and Climbers) and Mobilizers ( Go-Getters, Teachers, and Skeptics). A traditional sales professionals gravitate towards Talkers within the organization, where as a star sales professional towards Mobilizers.
Simplifying Buying ProcessA start B2B sales professional recognizes the need of making buying process easy, reorganizing the entire sales process to reduce the burden on the customer, helping them with tools and documents to support the sales process. They believe each sales process is unique and instead of spending too much time quizzing customers about the sales process and who needs to be involved in the sales process or who holds the purse strings. They and spends time educating, guiding and enabling mobilizers to champion the vision internally, helping them get the deal done.
Today, B2B buyers are increasingly circumventing sales; they’re increasingly using publicly available information to identify their needs and employing sophisticated procurement departments and third-party purchasing consultants to help them extract the best possible deals from suppliers.
B2B sales landscape is changing rapidly B2B Sales professionals need to adapt to be successful in insight solutions sales. Sticking to old selling approach will face increased rebuffs and rejections from their customers. The one willing to adapt and applying insight-selling, seeking out customers primed for change, challenging them with proactive insights, and educate them in championing sales internally, will become indispensable. Making difference between sales pitch that goes nowhere to one that closes customers business.