Some of the best B2B sales activities you must know
Selling is never an easy task and B2B sales, particularly, can be the trickiest.
In a B2B sales scenario, businesses have very little opportunity to influence the buyer’s decision.
There’s so much information available today that buyers prefer researching and comparing suppliers on their own. This results in very little time spent conversing with the sales representatives, perhaps a mere 5-6%.
Business-to-business sales have changed tremendously and it is important to understand the changes and implement the right practices to make a sale.
In this article, we will discuss what B2B sales is, how it has changed and what are some of the best sales activities you must know to overcome challenges and make that big sale.
Table of Contents
- 1 What is B2B sales?
- 2 B2B sales today
- 3 7 B2B sales practices to overcome challenges
- 4 Final thoughts
What is B2B sales?
Business-to-business (B2B) sales involve one business selling its product or service to another business. It is complex and involves multiple decision-makers to finalize the transaction making the sales cycle last a longer duration.
B2B selling is no longer the same as it used to be, the sales tactics that were once effective are outdated today.
B2B sales today
Earlier, sales representatives would be the primary channel to get to know about a product or a service. Today, buyers can go through 60-70% of the decision-making process on their own without having to engage with a salesperson.
Increased reliance on digital technology has revolutionized the buying process and almost 94% of B2B buyers conduct online research before deciding to buy a product or service.
Today’s B2B buyer is highly aware of the risks and opportunities a product or service might bring for their business. Apart from that, they are also extremely skeptical about what is marketed to them.
No one prefers pushy sales, that’s why social selling has gained so much traction. Buyers either prefer browsing options themselves or welcome a recommendation from a friend or family member.
Read: How technology has transformed sales and marketing
7 B2B sales practices to overcome challenges
When compared to B2C sales, B2B sales is highly rewarding if done right. Since it brings such great value, it is important to change your approach accordingly.
Mentioned below are seven sales practices that you can implement for successful B2B sales.
Know your buyer
Before reaching out to your potential buyer, research thoroughly about them. Research about the type of business they are into, the key decision-makers, the problems they are facing, and if or not what you are offering would solve their problem.
You can know about your buyer by following them on the social media channels they are on and if they have a website, go through it to know how they have been performing and the latest developments in their business.
Personalize your communication
Personalization is important almost everywhere today and in B2B selling, it becomes even more critical to adhere to it. A B2B buyer will be willing to consider your offer only if it is relevant to their business.
Pay great attention to selling a solution to their problem rather than your product or service. Ensure the communication that goes out at your end is tailor-made for them and has everything necessary.
“Make it about them” is told numerous times, but many fail to do it. One thing to know in B2B sales is that it is more about quality than quantity. So, it’s crucial to structure your messaging accordingly and make it more personalized.
As mentioned earlier, there’s growing skepticism among buyers. You telling them about your product or service will have less of an effect as opposed to someone else’s opinion of you.
Ask your high-value clients, whose problems you have solved successfully, to refer you to other businesses that they think might benefit from you. Come up with referral programs to reward them for spreading the word out for you.
Case studies are also a great way to help your potential buyers visualize the benefits that you can offer to their business. Make your client case studies as informational as possible and include client testimonials.
Join groups or communities where your target audience is present. Don’t outright pitch your product or service there, concentrate on engaging and building an active presence.
Share relevant industry-related content and be consistent, seeing you as an active member will help build credibility. A strong social media presence is also a very effective way of generating inbound leads.
Stay connected with your cold leads
Sometimes it is just not the right time to approach a potential buyer. In such a case, the decisions are put off for a later date or buyers just go cold but this does not mean you cannot approach them again.
There’s a great amount of time you will have to put in B2B sales, to avoid getting frustrated if a lead isn’t responding as you hoped it would. Carefully pace your follow-ups and make sure to stay in touch with your cold leads.
Align sales and marketing
A strong and successful sales and marketing alignment results in a 38% higher sales rate. A close interaction between the two teams will help the marketing team understand the target audience’s requirements better and will know which content is the best-performing.
With the changed B2B buying scenario, sales and marketing alignment is important for both teams to respond to the growing changes.
Use sales management tools
There are so many tools available today to make sales management much better and easier, yet millions of businesses are yet to adopt the right ones.
A powerful sales management tool streamlines the sales process and makes it easier to manage lead and customer information as well as teams. The right tool provides you transparent insights and helps you make more informed decisions to scale your business.
B2B sales has changed in recent years, it’s no longer as simple as it once was.
Today, you have to be proactive in your approach and be present where your potential buyers are. Consistent engagement and relevance are extremely important to get even a little closer to your targets.
Finally, it is important to follow a well-defined process. Implement the right tool to make managing your sales easy as manual interventions only increase the chances of errors like missed follow-ups or the loss of important information.
NeoBiz is one such sales management tool that streamlines your sales and customer engagement process and lets you manage sales right from your phone. You can download it by clicking here.