What do you discuss during your B2B sales calls? What is the subject, and what are the priorities during that conversation? We often hear in our B2B Sales Training Sessions that those conversations are centered around the delivery of products and services. But is that really something that puts a smile on your customers’ faces? Is that how they are seeing your differentiating ability or added value? This article is about the topic of your B2B Sales Call. And yes, that runs deeper than talking about your products and services. For this article, we’ll be using a scene from our own daily practice, selling B2B sales training to a prospect.
How does it work?
- You have a B2B sales meeting with a prospect!
- Instead of you, there are 10 others (right now)
- How do I distinguish myself in B2B sales?
- Topic of conversation: Your customer’s customer.
- Added Value
You have a B2B sales meeting with a prospect!
Great, that’s where it starts. After all, you can’t do business with prospects if you don’t speak with them to determine whether there is any (latent) need. And remember: They are looking critically at you as a sales professional too.
Yes, of course his sales reps need sales training. Because the better they get at sales, the more revenue they can generate. Makes sense. Your prospect will start by looking at you as a seller.
Is he convinced that you could train his sales force? Can you handle his (senior) staff? Is he convinced that you do what you said you would do? That your fee is reasonable, compared to market standards? Does he even like you, as a person? These are the things that matter most, in the beginning of your conversation.
It boils down to this: To what extent do I trust this person enough to provide a specific product or service, at a reasonable fee, that is useful to me?
For you, there are 10 others (right now)
Which is what you don’t want, obviously. In the ideal world, every B2B prospect is coming directly to you, speak only with you, and they’ll give you a big bag of money to please, pretty please, with sugar on top, provide them with your products or services.
Unfortunately, that’s not how it works for most organizations. Yet. That’s why it’s very important that you’re NOT perceived in the same manner as your competitors during a B2B sales conversation. And it’s not about you saying you’re better, either. It’s about being different.
How you’re different is totally up to you. How is your product or service different from those of your competitors? Definitely important. Please remember that it’s not just convenient to be different, but that your prospects experience that difference. He should distinguish you and your organization from all others. And because of that distinguishing factor, you’re ahead of the rest.
How do I distinguish myself in B2B sales?
That’s the core of the question. Are you just going to talk about products and services? No, the conversation should be more comprehensive. Do you talk about the reasons and arguments about why you’re different from everybody else? It will be addressed, but you’re not there yet.
What are you going to talk about during a B2B sales call? Most account managers generally discuss the dealings between the supplier (them) and the customers. A is what we do, and B is the advantage for your organization. When you continue having those kinds of conversations, you’ll never be able to distinguish yourself from the competition, who are talking about the same topics with the prospect or customer-to-be.
During a GREAT B2B sales call, you’re not only talking about the above-mentioned topics, but on something much more valuable. Much more valuable to the customer. Which is his customer base.
What is actually of value to your prospects, customers, and clients? Make a list!
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Topic of conversation: Your customer’s customer
This is where the magic happens. Of course, you talk about the delivery or your products and services, those are basic. Of course, you must do what you said you would. The customer still has to trust you, and you must trust you to provide a solid training session to his people.
That should all be in order, otherwise the customer won’t take you seriously (for long). But hey, that also applies to your competition. So in order to start to differentiate yourself, you’ll start talking about your customers’ customers. Applied to B2B sales training, that could present itself by asking these questions:
- When they’ve improved their sales skills, what would that mean for the customer intimacy with your clients?
- Let’s say that your sales professionals become better in having distinguishing conversations, how would that improve your position with the customers?Als jouw account managers betere gesprekken gaan voeren, hoe gaat dat jouw klanten vervolgens helpen?
- If your account managers have better conversations, how will that help your clients?
- Imagine that your sales force would become better as consultants, what ripple effect would that have on the delivery of your customers to their customers?
How often do you have conversations that really take it a step further from the delivery or your products or services? And how differentiating is that, really? What is your added value to your customers? And how can you increase that by addressing other topics?
Let us know how you’ll use this strategy during your (virtual) B2B sales calls! We are curious about your experiences. Is it important to your organization that your sales professionals keep developing themselves? Then get in touch with us!
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Written by Stephan Annema, partner at martijnschaap.com.