Executive Interview: with Pete Gillett, CEO of Zuant
In this series, we ask Sales Tech Executives to talk about Selling as a Buying Experience.
NANCY: SHOULD SELLING BE VIEWED AS A BUYING EXPERIENCE AND WHY OR WHY NOT?
PETE: Yes, absolutely, for sure. Unless you look from the other side as a potential purchaser, it’s impossible to design or improve the inbound experience.
NANCY: WHAT ARE THE TOP WAYS COMPANIES CAN TRANSFORM SALES TO IMPROVE THEIR PROSPECTS’ BUYING EXPERIENCE IN THE NEXT 12-24 MONTHS?
PETE: Once again, it’s a case of looking at your prospect’s experience as they approach your company. And these days, it’s all about ‘speed to lead’ – people won’t wait anymore; whether it’s a visit to your website or your tradeshow booth.
For instance, all the bots in place to provide instant enquiry handling which smoothly escalates to the human touch as soon as required. And, even before that, how’s your website structure? Does it provide a logical journey for each of the key job functions that could be interested in your products or services, and can you take it the stage further to look at the individual personas within those job functions? It’s a long process, but it pays dividends in streamlining that initial touch.
And the other big tip is not to overlook the role of Inside Sales, particularly when it comes to B2B Marketing. This is often an overlooked aspect where there is such a flurry of activity to close an initial deal, but if the buying cycle timing isn’t absolutely correct it may take a year or two to close. Therefore, having a CRM database that allows sales leads to flip flop between the direct sales team and the inside sales team provides the ideal follow-up using the warm-up artist and the big closers at just the right time!
NANCY: HOW SHOULD COMPANIES DECIDE WHICH BUYING EXPERIENCE IMPROVEMENT INITIATIVES TO START WITH – ASSUMING THEY CAN’T DO ALL AT ONCE?
PETE: Going straight to our core experience, tradeshows, clearly this is always one of the biggest line items in anyone’s marketing budget, and it always seems crazy to us that RoI isn’t cemented in as an absolutely vital aspect of any event planning!
Clearly the Zuant product is designed to streamline this whole process all the way from capturing higher quality, qualified sales leads, ensuring that they followed up immediately and then providing all the tracking reports to show which events are performed the best, and also which sales people perform the best in following up those leads. These really are the important numbers.
NANCY: WHAT ARE YOUR TIPS FOR ENSURING THAT TECHNOLOGIES CONTRIBUTE TO THE BUYING EXPERIENCE IN MEANINGFUL WAYS?
PETE: This could be the most important question; and, oddly, you may have the best technology in the world, but, unless you have a project leader and motivator to set the objectives, and provide the reporting, help and assistance and the overall drive to success, then any new technology project is likely to fail, it’s as simple as that.
NANCY: HOW DOES YOUR SOLUTION HELP SELLERS IMPROVE THE BUYING EXPERIENCE?
PETE: Zuant allows the sales executive to present exactly what the prospect is looking for, provide relevant material straightaway and crucially, record all of the information that qualifies the lead and allows the personalised follow-up that is required by the company – something that’s normally missing, and kills sales!
Also, having this information flow automatically through into a CRM system ensures that part of the chain isn’t broken for a job that sellers just hate doing.
Pete Gillett is the founder and CEO of Zuant. He launched the world’s first web-based CRM system for Lucent Technologies in 1997. He’s won numerous industry awards and was a finalist in BBC Tomorrow’s World Prince of Wales Competition for Industrial Design & Production.
Zuant is the go to software platform for sales & marketing teams. They are trusted by the world’s top brands to streamline and standardize their data capture, distribute and present great content, and provide access to CRM data – on, or offline.