SALES SKILLS + CAPABILITIES

A YEAR ON FROM A YEAR ON…HOW B2B IS EVOLVING

Is B2B sales set to change yet again?

So here we are…. Freedom Day is upon us.  18 months of world-changing events….

…misery to many, opportunity to some and a grounded knowledge that things, more than likely will not ever go back to how they were.

Yet in business that subject matter is still one that rings around most board room tables, employees WhatsApp groups and within people’s homes every evening.

What will my company do?  Will they want us back in?  Will they want us back in all the time?  Will they give us flexibility?

Or will the impossible happen and we all revert back to going into the office 9-5 Mon-Fri?

Ultimately nobody knows, and if the last 18 months has taught us anything, it is that trends can shift dramatically, and equally, forward-thinking flexible businesses respond rapidly.

But the Pandemic has also been music to the B2B Buyers ears…

During this time of course, the B2B Buyer and buying process has continued to evolve with alarming pace.

The buyer of course was evolving dramatically before the pandemic which leads many experts to believe the last 18 months has accelerated the inevitable:

  • More and more self-research across all available channels (web/social/industry)
  • An even higher expectation on personalisation from sellers
  • An increasingly millennial buyer
  • A preference to not see a B2B seller until THEY (As the buyer) dictate – usually simply to handle the sales transaction
  • Acceleration of the remote sale

The Non-SaaS sectors have the same challenges..

And it isn’t just the SaaS buying audience (an audience that is typically better suited to remote selling) where we are seeing these changes.

More ‘traditional’ manufacturing led organisations are seeing huge shifts in the way their buying audience wants to be sold to.

Desk based sales here are inevitably here to stay, field sales meanwhile need to continue to diversify….

And even if you want to go and see a client it may longer be as simple as that.

For example, will FDs allow you to get on a £300 train to London for an hour’s meeting?

Will they even want you in your company car racking up miles when meetings could be done remotely?

The same will be true of course for the buying audience….

…if your chief buying audience are working remotely then there is no chance of expecting them to take a face-to-face meeting.

And if you are trying to do this in the one or two days a week that they are in the office, then diary availability will be a real issue.

So where do B2B Sales go from here? 

  • Sales enablement tools will need to continue their expansion into the non-tech markets they continue to ignore.
  • Sales teams will need to potentially be able to sell and transact virtually AND in person – which may lead to a change in required skillset for future sales FTE
  • Content creators will be in high demand as the need to serve up exactly what the buying audience needs to read and cutting this precisely across various channels will increase workloads.
  • Data targeting and using machine learning to prioritise effort and efficiency will surely become one of the biggest investments b2b organisations make to support the changing cycle of the b2b sales process

What will it all look like in July 2022?

Fortunately, with the notion now that we must live with Covid, the same is true of how we do business – we need to continue to evolve and embrace it.

If we stand still, we will lose.

Technology, working culture, the high demands of the B2B Buyer and an increasingly rigid procurement process means that B2B sales will continue to evolve…rapidly.

As for predictions for B2B sales in July 2022, a year on from a year on, well what we do know is that a lot CAN and WILL happen in the next 12 months!

To help you stay ahead of the trends, and formulate the most compelling, forward thinking and cutting edge B2B sales strategy, contact Ampli today.

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