If you are a b2b business leader this should make you stop and think.

Listening in to the Gartner 'Post Pandemic Scenario Planning for Sales Leaders' webinar yesterday, it hit home hard...

Gartner team running the webinar on post pandemic scenario planning

Maria Boulden, Vice President, Executive Partner, Sales at Gartner said that we should "Reshape the Selling Motion as well as the Buying Motion. Enjoy the fact that you are at this nexus and help define the next Sales motion...".

There is now no debate as to whether, “this is actually a thing”, Social Selling and Influence is how we reshape the Selling motion…

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Lets breakdown the change:

We ignore “corporate marketing” We are told that its essential to build brands, but as all corporate marketing says the same thing, how can it?  We are the best!  We are number one! It all blends into the Marketing wallpaper we all swipe or walk past every day.

Websites, when did you last open a company website that said, “we are the 4th best at what we do in our sector, we are a bit expensive and we are quite slow”?  Exactly, websites are all about how great, how solutions focussed, how world class…bla. Run the analytics, are you really getting what you need from that website or do you need a rethink? 

GDPR has killed off email campaigns – So why run them? We ask our students how many people read the “circulars” - none. Like ads, technology has caught up with the unsolicited email senders and they go straight to junk. Do you read your suppliers monthly newsletter? If not, do you really think your clients are waiting with anticipation to read yours...? 

It confuses me when leaders tell me they don’t like being flooded by Sales emails, but they think it’s acceptable for their company to do it to their prospects….

Cold calling, when there are no ideas left in the team, the last tactic of a dying Sales and Marketing plan. Again, interrupt and broadcast. As a businessperson, do you take cold calls from Salespeople? See above…

In a recent article by Gartner, they give us some hard-hitting predictions:

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They go on to explain...

"Over the next five years, an even greater rise in digital interactions between buyers and suppliers will break traditional sales models."

"The Gartner Future of Sales 2025 report predicts that by 2025, 80% of B2B sales interactions between suppliers and buyers will occur in digital channels. Chief sales officers (CSOs) and other senior sales leaders must accept that buying preferences have permanently changed and, as a result, so too will the role of sellers."

“Sales organizations must be able to sell to customers everywhere the customer expects to engage, interact and transact with suppliers”.

"Gartner defines the future of sales as the permanent transformation of organizations’ sales strategies, processes and allocation of resources, moving from a seller-centric to a buyer-centric orientation and shifting from analogue sales processes to .... digital-first engagement with customers."

"Gartner research shows buyers typically only spend 17% of their time meeting with potential suppliers when considering a purchase. With less and less customer face time, virtual selling via digital channels will predominate."

Here comes the punch...

"B2B sales reps need to embrace ... a new manner of engaging customers, matching their sales activity to their customers’ buying practices and information-collecting needs."

Some questions for you:

1.    What are you going to do to set yourself apart from your competition?

2.    How will you engage with your prospects in a world when you cannot reach them on the telephone, email or shows?

3.    Without face-to-face meetings, how will you build the depth of relationship you once had?

4.    What is it that you can do differently in the current climate?

5.    With pipeline going soft you are going to need to prospect with more efficiency, what methods could you learn to employ to help you?

6.    Prospecting to people who are themselves worried will need sensitivity, this will need a change of tack. How will you do this?

7.    With all of the lead generation that would have come though the conferences and paid media, now not taking place, how will you back fill this?

8.    Your prospects and customers are going to look for empathy in connection in these troubled times how can you show this and not just be touting sales literature? 

We expect each of the people we train in Social Selling to be able to make (if they do what we say) at least one additional meeting per week (minimum). Let’s assume that 4 of those meetings turn into proposals and you close 1 of those proposals. That means you are closing one additional deal per quarter. If your average deal size is £100,000, then each salesperson is closing an additional £400,000 per year. As sales team of 10 will create £4 million additional revenue per annum. This isn’t a one off, this is every year.

You save money, maximise your exposure in the right areas and see your company transform.

This is not guesswork or a Beta test for us, it’s what we do for large organisations and SMEs around the world and, we have the results data to back it up.  

We’ve already run all the experiments and tests, so you don’t have to – You can go straight to work.

How are you and your team defining the your next Sales motion..?

Live Social '21 and get prepared.

Eric Doyle

Crux / DLA Ignite