It’s the dreaded slump. You suspect the buyer is pulling away, not returning calls, too busy to talk. It’s time to take some action. B2B buyers are often savvy, high-level professionals and what you’ve done in the past isn’t working. It’s time to engage the buyer in a new way and get personal about it with data and tools.
Sounds simple, right? Not so fast. You need the right tools and preparation to make that connection, and ultimately the sale. Here are some basic rules to consider:
Data is a treasure chest, but how do you unlock it?
The buzz around data analytics is legit, but just knowing the stats won’t help convert the sale. It must be meaningful to the buyer, and it must identify opportunities. There are plenty of examples in the sales world where analytics is delivering significant improvements in growth, efficiency, and effectiveness. Buyers want to learn. Showing them how to bring value to their own company table will win you points and help to re-engage the buyer.
Know the buyer
What are the company’s goals? What are their pain points to resolve? How are they compensated? Knowing these areas shows you are engaged, knowledgeable, and better equipped to help them.
Bring something new to the conversation
Remember, your goal is to re-engage the buyer, don’t tell them what they already know, but do let them know you understand their business (their financial performance, industry and peer comparisons, industry trends). Combining this knowledge with data that is pertinent to their company, and how your product or service specifically brings value, could push that buyer back on track, and headed through the pipeline.
Buyers are overwhelmed
Most companies face obstacles such as legacy systems and lack of automation, which results in only a fraction of data being effectively utilized. You won’t be the first person to show them the data analytics mantra. Everyone has access to information online, competitive intelligence, and other companies that can help the buyer capture and use data. They want to use analytics more effectively, but struggle. Don’t overwhelm the buyers with a full company overhaul; the seller that connects to a valid use of data and gets to that “aha” moment with the buyer will likely win the day.
Qualify what your product or service can mean to the potential client. Share customer testimonials to show how real results are possible. Quantifying the value is a great way to get the client’s attention.
Key performance indicators
What KPIs are they measured and compensated on? This info is similar among companies within the same industry, so you can use industry standard KPIs to show the buyer you know what is important to them.
Yes, industry and business trends are important, so sellers need to address them. Data is valuable and can provide many insights to new trends. Reveal to the buyer what other successful businesses in their industry have done, and how your product or service can specifically add value. But it takes a personalized conversation to help the buyer visualize that value in their own business, helping you to convert the sale, and keep the pipeline growing.
Understand what drives sales success
Within organizations, data analytics can also help a seller know why buyers have gone lukewarm, recognize the signs of customer unhappiness, and take action to retain customers. In one report by McKinsey, they described a global chemicals company that wanted to reduce its customer churn. The marketing analytics team built a predictive model based on more than thirty variables and identified ten key factors that pushed customers away. A key finding was that the more products a customer had, the less likely they were to leave. Cross-selling mattered and was a stronger driver of customer loyalty than price changes. Each regional sales manager swiftly found a list of at‐risk customers on his or her desk with guidance on how to engage each one to assure loyalty. Equipped with these insights, the company reduced churn by 25 percent.
Call to Action
Be ready to relate the data to your buyer’s needs, what goals and compensation metrics will make the buyer tick and prove how you bring value to the table?
Don’t use stale data; data needs to be accurate, up-to-date and relevant. Make sure you are adding new insights to the conversation.
Bring energy to the data. Energy is contagious; if you show genuine interest in helping the buyer succeed and meet their goals, it could help turn around the tables, re-engage the buyer, and hopefully turn into a valuable, long-term business relationship.
If you are interested in learning more about how to leverage data to increase your sales effectiveness, learn more about FinListic's ClientIQ here.