Q: SHOULD SELLING BE VIEWED AS A BUYING EXPERIENCE AND WHY
LIZ: According to Forrester Research, B2B buyers report that only 20% of meetings with sales professionals focus on their specific needs. Today, by the time a buyer reaches a seller, they’ve typically done most of their research.
And since buyers choose their vendors from a pool, sellers should be striving to create the most positive and barrier-free environment that they can.
Sales reps should always view each buyer interaction with the perspective of, ‘what’s in it for the buyer?’ They should aim to provide everything they can to enable the buyer to make a decision, including understanding their pain points and how to properly align to them.
In the end, it comes down to how well the rep can provide holistic differentiation for their product or solution. That means minimizing barriers for the buyer, getting them the requested assets and making it easy for them to communicate your value proposition across their organization.
Q: WHAT ARE THE TOP WAYS COMPANIES CAN TRANSFORM SALES TO IMPROVE THEIR PROSPECTS' BUYING EXPERIENCE IN THE NEXT 12-24 MONTHS
LIZ: Companies should think about their buyer’s buyer. The sales process doesn’t end with the buyer, it extends to each person the buyer is connected to at their company.
Sales reps should think about how to align their offerings to the buyer’s biggest challenges – that’s what’s going to make the biggest impact with the buyer and their teams in terms of providing value.
For example, when a rep begins a sales engagement, they should present a list of potential use cases to the buyer and have them choose the ones that apply best to them – that makes it easy for the rep to direct the conversation to areas that are top of mind.
As a sales enablement professional, it’s my job to ensure that the rep understands how to describe the use case from the buyer’s perspective and how our solution can help.
Q: HOW SHOULD COMPANIES DECIDE WHICH BUYING EXPERIENCE IMPROVEMENT INITIATIVES TO START WITH - ASSUMING THEY CAN'T DO ALL AT ONCE?
LIZ: To decide which buying experience improvement to start with, look at the areas of your sales cycle that are the longest or where you have the lowest conversion rates between sales stages. Doing that will help you identify where you’re misaligned in the buying process.
Another option is to send customers a survey or conduct a win/loss analysis with them – both of these avenues help to determine strengths and areas of improvement in terms of whether your reps are providing the right buying experience.
Q: WHAT ARE YOUR TIPS FOR ENSURING THAT TECHNOLOGIES CONTRIBUTE TO THE BUYING EXPERIENCE IN MEANINGFUL WAYS?
LIZ: To ensure that technology is a positive contributor to the buying process, look at your existing technology stack to determine if each solution is actually helping sellers prepare, practice and perform at the highest levels during the buying experience.
The buyer needs to have a positive experience with all of your technologies throughout the sales cycle. If technology is only creating noise, then you may want to consider removing it from the sales process.
For example, right now video conferencing solutions are crucial to the buying process, so ensure that yours is easy for customers to use and access information, so there’s never a barrier in any stage of the buying process.
Q: HOW DOES YOUR SOLUTION HELP SELLERS IMPROVE THE BUYING EXPERIENCE?
LIZ: Brainshark’s sales readiness platform enables our sellers to be prepared to deliver an effective buying experience with engaging content, on-demand training, flexible coaching and scorecards to improve sales performance.
For example, when engaging with a buyer, our sellers can use Brainshark to follow-up after a call or meeting. With our content authoring tool, reps can quickly put together a video-based presentation with their voice summarizing what happened on the call. They can also include links to a recording of the call and attach any documentation that the customer requested – all within that single presentation.
This format allows the rep to track viewership and enables the buyer to easily access all resources via a single link and share it with any team members who need to be informed. Plus, reps can include a quick survey question at the end of the presentation, allowing the customer to ask a question or provide feedback.
VP Sales Enablement, Brainshark
With Brainshark, companies can: enable sales teams with on-demand training that accelerates onboarding and keeps reps up-to-speed; validate readiness with sales coaching and practice that ensures reps master your message; and empower sales organizations with rich, dynamic content that can be created quickly, updated easily, and accessed anywhere.