New McKinsey Survey
Global B2B Decision-Maker Response to Covid-19 Crisis
- Tide has turned. Digital and remote rep interactions are likely to be the dominant elements of the B2B go-to-market model going forward, when selling to both SMB's and large enterprises
- Don’t count on returning to a pre-COVID-19 level of in-person sales coverage. Only 20–30% of B2B buyers want to ever interact with reps in person even in their ideal/post-COVID-19 model
- Around 90% of B2B decision makers expect the remote and digital model to stick around for the long run, and 3 in 4 believe the new model is as effective or more so than before COVID-19 (for both existing customers and prospects)
- 97% of B2B buyers claim they will make a purchase in an end-to-end, digital self-serve model, with the vast majority very comfortable spending $50K or more online. ( $50K is amazing number!)
- Videoconference connections are critical and are preferred over audio/phone by almost 4 out of 5 B2B buyers
Five Fast Facts
Around Today's Sales Process Problems
In the past 20 years, I have experienced four major global crisis. The 2000 Dot-Com crash, the 9/11 tragedy, and the 2008 financial and real estate bust. However, none of these events have had the major impact on the selling professional as the Covid-19 crisis.
Fact 1: Work From Anywhere is not going away.
In the past 15 months, we moved light years ahead around working remotely and in B2B, it's here to stay. In fact, most employee surveys are showing that the remote B2B workforce is actually increasing productivity for many organizations. This means new skill sets and learning motions (training) around selling remotely and digitally is in high demand. Have you increased your remote training and coaching budget for 2021? I bet your best competition has.
Fact 2: We live in a global data driven world.
Data on the macro market factors data on your customers and data on your competition. How you sell is now data driven. Do you need help in focusing on what data really matters the most to drive your sales strategy?
Fact 3: “Getting a qualified meeting” is a lot harder today, especially for your BDRs, SDRs and AEs salespeople.
Because of this, you need to enable them with a solid set of marketing, lead generation, and selling tools that support virtual selling. Are your product marketing, marketing and demand gen teams aligned with sales on how to help sales "get a new qualified meeting"? Or are your sales rep’s customer connections rates dropping? Are your senior sales reps only relying on past relationships and you are now seeing gaps in Q2 pipeline? That leads to a slow Q3 2021.
Fact 4: The pre-call Discovery Process for a demo meeting is mission critical to win in sales today.
The Discovery process can make or break your relationship with a new prospect. If you get it right, you could have a customer for life. Get it wrong and you could be done before you start. Research shows Reps that conduct a demo without Discovery win 73% less often in a competitive opportunity. Many reps without proper training may try and cut corners or all together skip the Discovery Process. Are you comfortable with the level of competency and confidence of your sales team to execute relevant Discovery conversations and demos that close business?
Fact 5: More than ever before, you need know what is a great Product Demo and why is it really important.
The most critical piece in the sales process of a B2B SaaS company - is the DEMO and the NARRATIVE. Demos should be personalized, compelling, interactive, and easy to understand so that buyers are engaged immediately and instilled with a desire to keep the dialog going. When done correctly, a demo allows the customer to see and feel how things will be better if they buy from you, and worse if they don't. If done right, it makes your prospect understand your product and will solve their problem or attain their goal. Research is showing most B2B SaaS companies when securing a qualified demo have close rates that range between 20% and 50%. What is your sales team demo closing ratio?
It's all about value, trust, and delighting customers! By establishing your value story to customers, especially in the late stages of COVID-19 recovery, you will position yourself as the “Trusted Advisor” when your buyers fully return to investing in their digital transformation and increasing their budgets.
It’s the age of “big data,” but how do CXO’s, sales and marketing leadership use all of this critical and valuable information? How is it applied to developing a sales story that is used downstream? Does your customer data validate and take the risk out of your sales “talk track”? Is your customer sales conversation mapped to each stage of the buyer’s journey?
95% of CMO's identify content as a priority and pain. CMO's need to interlock with Sales Leaders to better tailor content that validates their sales story at every stage of journey. How would you rate your interlock around your personas and sales storytelling practice with your product, marketing and sales teams?
Customers are extremely busy. You know that it is taking longer for them to decide to buy. Your sales team is getting less face-to-face selling time, if at all. And more of your prospects and customers are deleting your emails, voicemails, and accepting fewer and fewer conference calls.
Brevity and Great Storytelling = Your Competitive Advantage: Visualization of your sales story is critical to making it memorable. Can your sales team delivery your sales story and deck in 18 minutes? (consider that speakers at TED talks must stop at the 18-minute mark. Can you guess why?).