A salesperson selling a B2B product doesn’t follow a sales strategy and enters a sales cycle.
Following the above situation, this is what happens with the seller–From selling to creating a relationship with the buyer, the salesperson is lost and on their own. The seller applies all the practical knowledge gathered over the years but fails to use the best practices and standardized procedures.
In other words, if your sales force doesn’t follow the industry best practices well—and doesn’t create a selling plan inside out—your sales team will soon hit the wall.
As per research:
- Surveyed executives said that only 15% of sales calls added value - Forrester.
- Inability to communicate a valuable message is the number-one obstacle to achieving sales quotas. - SeriusDecisions
Now that’s concrete evidence that every sales team needs a guide– a structured plan to adhere to and rely upon.
Thus, companies need a B2B sales strategy, created not with intuition but using data and insights from the market and internal business.
Today, we’ll discuss the following seven winning sales strategies:
Let’s get you started!
What’s a Sales Strategy?
A sales strategy is a well-structured plan and documentation that guides on selling and positioning of the product and services sold by a company. The strategy document clearly mentions ways to differentiate the product or service and stand out from the competition.
The sales strategies have the following characteristics that make the sales strategy nothing less than a Bible for the sales team:
- A strategy is driven by two main objectives: Revenue and Sales Quota
- Sales strategies offer a wide range of information, including sales goals, ICP or buyer personas, seller KPIs, sales process, competition analysis, product positioning, selling methodologies, and competitive analysis.
- Sales strategies are created using insights retrieved from the CRM.
- The strategy needs periodic review and revision to adapt to the new market regime.
- Developing a guide also requires the contribution of sales conversations.
- Sales strategies and plans must be allotted a dedicated library and made accessible to the entire sales team with editing rights to only a few stakeholders.
- Generally, the sales director constructs the strategy and communicates to senior managers for further implementation.
There are five elements of a successful sales strategy on a broader level:
What are the types of sales strategies?
1. Selling with social media
Did you know? In the USA, in 2021, 91.9 percent of marketers in organizations with more than 100 employees were expected to use social media.
With that data in front of you, you can assess the importance of social media in sales and marketing.
However, social media activities don’t give results unless carefully thought through.
For example, Sharing B2B blogs on Facebook communities aggressively makes less sense than sharing those blogs on LinkedIn.
The catch is simple. Learn where your audience is most active and fire up the content hose on the same channel.
Also, make efforts on social media channels to roll out meaningful and creative content. Your content idea must satisfy one of the following:
And, lastly, don’t overlook the content tone for each channel. Comprehend and adapt the content with the voice of the channel. Make efforts to act like an old community member.
2. Power of value proposition
You’ll be surprised to learn that 74 percent of C-level buyers will entertain and enter into business deals with companies with a vision.
You may have a best-in-class product capable of impacting the market and selling like hotcakes. However, the product’s value is not communicated well by the customer-facing teams, and the product causes an entry into the market without any recognition.
A situation like the above occurs on the occasion when a solid value proposition is not designed. The message communicated is not persuasive and doesn’t speak about product benefits. Simply marketing the product features doesn’t make a powerful message.
Instead, choose a message that talks about the customer challenges and makes your organization the problem-solver. Use data and insights to add weight to the value proposition.
3. Focusing on personal branding
If there’s anything you can learn from the celebrities and C-level executives, most of them use their brand name or make a logo to endorse a movie or a new product in the market.
A company can brand itself only up to an extent because it loses the human touch after a while. With individuals, the human touch is restored, and trust is earned instantly.
Be a thought leader in your field.
Speaking of personal branding, how can we not touch thought-leadership.
Thought leaders can advise and present essential suggestions on a niche topic or expertise. They can present best practices that are tried and tested. Share their experience and stories that made them climb the ladder of success.
Linkedin and Twitter is the best place to promote this B2B sales strategy.
One must remember not to flaw the strategy, as it can backfire badly and tarnish the thought leader’s image, and the company’s brand is also put at risk.
4. Master storytelling
Sales strategies and tactics are evolving. Sales leaders and reps are searching for more human ways to reach their audience and connect.
Connecting with your audience is possible when the sales rep can use similar personas in a story and help the buyer visualize the result.
Imagine a sales rep reciting the story of how she decided to join the organization and how the mobile app motivated her to join the company. She’ll narrate the story of how the app impacts the nation’s senior citizens and empowers them to handle online payments by themselves.
A simple story like the above narration can make a powerful sales pitch and hit the buyers' emotional chord.
Recommended reading: How to accelerate storytelling skills?
5. Leverage personalization
Every B2B sales process is standardized and works in the same pattern. Even the activities within the sales process are similar. Then how will the sellers stand out?
To cut through the noise, sales professionals need to learn to adapt personalization in every step. From the first follow-up email to the product demo, all elements should have a hint of personalization.
For example, choose to talk about a customer success story that resonates with your prospect’s company and solves a similar use case. By painting a clear and similar picture, you’ll be able to earn a little more credibility in the prospects’ eyes.
6. Offer Customization
While it’s easy to say that you have a fixed package and pricing structure, it’s also important to note that customers don’t function the same way.
Customers are keen to work with flexible vendors and adapt to the customers' requirements. A client may ask for a mild change in sales meeting time, a new product feature, amend the implementation method, or custom pricing.
You must be mentally and physically prepared for customization requests as a sales team. Any stringent sales strategy won’t work in 2022.
How about exploring 18 Tried and Tested Psychological Sales Strategies To Make You Sell More?
7. Invest in existing accounts
Chasing new accounts is a must-do activity and shouldn’t be ignored. But neglecting the existing customers can be a risky affair.
It’s always more expensive to acquire new customers. Retaining old customers and drawing more business from them is always better than spending unrealistic hours behind new accounts.
A balanced sales strategy would encourage spending time on new clients but nurturing old clients to keep them alive and informed.
A memorable sales strategy example
Freshworks is a B2B SaaS company based in India. It was founded in 2010 in Chennai. The company develops flawless cloud-based software solutions for all segments of businesses.
Freshworks offers a wide range of products ranging from sales CRM software to recruitment tools and customer-support helpdesk software. Freshworks climbed the success ladder in a short period and capacitated 1,000+ employees globally, across five offices, and more than 130,000 global organizations are its loyal customers and a few ambassadors.
The success rate is proof of a solid sales strategy adopted by Freshworks.
A few pinpointed strategies are listed below:
- They focused on giving a remarkable customer onboarding experience.
- In spite of the new entry barrier challenges, they tried to cater to all market segments, including SMB companies.
- Instead of investing in field selling, they established a powerful inside sale model.
- Freshworks made use of Youtube as part of its sales and marketing strategy.
- The company has leveraged the Google search engine data to expand its customer base.
- The company is aggressively expanding globally and employing inbound marketing strategies to attract new leads.
Recommended reading: Would you like to learn another story of a growing startup?
Why should you follow a sales strategy?
As a closing note, I’ll leave you with a few critical reasons for constructing sales strategies on time:
- You’ll achieve improved sales productivity.
- Generate leads faster and more effectively.
- Be more analytical and insight-driven in sales decisions.
- Nurture a smarter and efficient sales team
- Earn more business at less cost and low risk.
Now that you’ve learned about the B2B sales strategies and their importance is the company, what’s stopping you from creating one? Need help?
Results first, payment later.