Inbound versus outbound always seems to be a debate that goes on between sales and marketing. Sometimes sales leaders just think if they had more people and more phone numbers that they could make more sales. Marketers feel often think that if they just had more content and a larger budget for promotion, that they could drive more sales. Both may be true, but the culture of B2B sales has changed now that buyers can do all the research they need online. The divide between sales and marketing is blurring – and rightly so!
With the ability to research their next purchase online comes the opportunity for sales professionals to be visible and engaged where the buyer is seeking information. Sales professionals that are harnessing the power of content and building their own authority in their space are achieving great results. Blogging, social media, speaking opportunities, and business networking are all mediums where sales people can present their ability to provide value to the prospect.
B2B Sales, Buyers and the Social Selling Strategy
- Be present where the buyer is – LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook Groups, and other industry sites are all great networking sites where sales professionals can find buyers or build a great reputation.
- Provide value, build credibility – Curating content, answering questions, and providing assistance to buyers (even outside your products and services) will help you build credibility.
- Value + credibility = authority – Having a reputation for helping others makes you a great sales resource. B2B Buyers don't want to close with a salesperson, they want to find a partner who can help their business succeed.
- Authority leads to trust – Trust is the basis by which every B2B buyer makes their decision. Trust is the key to every business opportunity online and is typically the last barrier in the purchase decision.
- Trust leads to consideration – Once you have the buyer's trust, they'll reach out when they see that you can help them.
- Consideration gets the close! – Every great sales professional just wants the opportunity to be considered so they can shine and get the close.
There's a lot of talk around the changing sales and marketing landscape. But this evolution is driven by one important factor: the buyer. The way people purchase products and services online has dramatically changed over the years – and these days, buyers have more power than ever. To understand more about what influences today’s customer, we’ve put together an infographic that reveals their motivations. What kinds of content resonate more with buyers? Who do they trust? Which tools should you employ to simplify the buying process? Jose Sanchez, Sales for Life.
People buy from thought leaders who are visible where the B2B buyer is seeking information and providing the information the buyer is looking for. Are your sales people there?