Hold on to your socks, because this is the no-fluff, quick-to-read and digest, guide for B2B sales professionals
This guide will liberate every sales professional now and hereafter; that's because it gives them the permission to stop selling. But as someone responsible for driving real concrete results, how can I stop selling, you ask?
Customer relationship management in B2B is about acquiring the right customer. That's about as cliche as it gets, and that's what most business schools and programs teach as if it's a universal panacea. Since this is a different kind of guide, we won't bother regurgitating those common lessons. Instead, we're going to dive deeper with real, off-the-cuff, strategy that you can put into practice as soon as possible.
How Do We Find Out What B2B Buyers Want?
That's a difficult question considering buyers often keep their needs close to the chest. As you've probably noticed, buyers can be very paranoid, and slow to open up to new prospects.
Here's a little secret about the buyer you're trying to woo: they don't give a crap about your product or service. They care about solving a problem. This doesn't mean you being to assume or try to demand answers geared toward figuring out what they need.
B2B Customer Acquisition Through Data Analysis
If the prospect makes available various data sets regarding external or internal operations, use this to your advantage. Is it possible to cleanse and reorganize the data so you can spot patterns that would have otherwise gone unnoticed? Better yet, can you show spot trends in the competition's data in order to foresee competitive advantages? Go through reports and statistics; be sure to frame challenges more positively than negatively.
Become a B2B Consultant to Foster Relationship
Now that you know why it's important to avoid giving any premature diagnosis or making assumptions, now you're in a position to correctly and confidently identify solutions. Building a real relationship takes time. Anyone who tries to convince you that you will meet a client, they will fall madly in love with you, and buy from you instantly is delusional.
Sales Meets Marketing, But in a Mutual Way (B2B)Marketing efforts should be focused on getting more customers, selling more product to more people. This is how Coca-Cola went from selling 10 billion bottles of product to 15 billion, so I would be inclined to follow their example. It looks like you'll be building a lot of relationships with a lot of people. Yes, you'll have to kiss quite a few frogs, but that's what managing business to business customer relationships are all about.
Generate Demand By Helping, Not Telling
Try asking departmental managers what their priorities are for the department, from top to bottom and vice versa. It usually helps to boil their problems down to a set of values so issues become more manageable from their perspective. Are there results from adjacent parties that can prove what you're saying is true? Use that to your advantage as well.
Whether you choose to run educational events, create engaging webinars, or other events focused on fostering community between your organizations and theirs, demand generation works when both parties are truly invested over the long run.