The world of B2B sales has changed. There have been big changes in the industry, and it’s starting to show. A recent study revealed that businesses don’t contact their suppliers directly until 57% of the purchasing process has already been completed.
It’s a far cry from the world of yesterday, where this would be considered unthinkable. Nevertheless, the B2B sales world is changing and it’s continuing to evolve. If you fail to adapt, you will suffer for it when it comes to sales. This article will go into the big changes that will strike the B2B sales world this coming year.
Account-Based Marketing is Here
Account-based Marketing (ABM) will become the big thing in 2016. B2B companies will see it as a method to open up new revenue streams and generate new leads. What this means in a nutshell, is more personalization for customers.
Every account will be looked at with a tailor-made strategy in mind. It will lead to an era of better planning and more efficient campaigns.
Balkanization and Marketing Automation
The way marketing works in sales will change in 2016. Specifically, companies will see a blurring of the lines between marketing and sales. Salespeople are increasingly shifting towards marketing, whereas marketers are moving more towards active sales.
For automation purposes, sales teams will be taking on the tasks that were formerly the domain of marketers, such as Instagram growth service. Rather than sending out generic newsletters from the marketing team, they will be transferred to the sales team in order to provide a full interactive experience.
Predictive Intelligence is on the Move
Predictive intelligence is essentially about predicting the sales world before it happens. It’s about using software to try to determine what people want and what they are likely to react to. 2016 is projected to be the year where businesses are going to be looking even more at external data signals. They will use big data from the outside in order to compile their sales strategies.
Predictive analytics are bound to get more intelligent over time, which will make them a more viable strategy for companies to use going forward.
How Bad is Sales Inefficiency?
Keep in mind that the current state of the economy is still not where it was before the crash of 2008. Businesses are still watching where they spend their money. This means big things for both the people you are selling to and the company you are working for.
In 2016, businesses will continue to be more selective over what they purchase. This means you will have to spend more time with each lead and more time convincing them of the benefits of your solution. A solutions-based approach is what will win the day.
However, for salespeople, they will have to up their games, and not just to clinch the sale. Companies are losing revenue every year because of sales inefficiency. With the state of the economy, salespeople will be forced to up their games.
This means they will have to try new things and take an honest look in the mirror at themselves. It could mean the difference between even having a job come the end of the year.
How Must You React to these Changes?
With all this in mind, you do have to take into account how you are going to address these changes. For most people, it isn’t necessary to make any huge alterations. 2016 isn’t a landmark year that will change the industry forever, or at least not yet.
Consider this year to be a wake-up call for the changes you will soon have to make if you want to continue to succeed. Now more than ever salespeople have to understand what businesses want and expect from them. They will have to be bolder and braver than at any point in the last decade.
Here are some tips for getting this right:
- Be willing to ask the hard questions. Too many salespeople are dancing around the issue because they are afraid of a rejection.
- Become an educator. Show your leads what they can get from your solution, rather than just hope they can see.
- Spend more time with your leads. Forget about the number of leads you are running through and concentrate on a higher quality of pitch.
2016 will undoubtedly bring change to the entire B2B sales industry. You have to be ready for it. That means the earlier you start initiating change the better the results. If you fail to do this, your competitors will. In the extremely cutthroat B2B sales world, every opportunity must be taken.