AI can be a valuable tool for sales teams, but it is not a replacement for best sales practices and an experienced salesperson.
So how can AI help B2B sales, especially when customers’ top priority is an excellent and personalized customer experience?
Our Vision at JMS Elite
JMS Elite, now in its twentieth year in business, has navigated a changing world since 2002.
Throughout all the years and countless changes, we have kept the integrity of our original vision: that deploying experienced callers with the unique ability to engage executive decision makers in peer-to-peer interactions—helping them better understand our clients’ offerings in the context of their business needs—ultimately leads to highly qualified B2B sales lead and eventually closed business.
We have always supported the view that establishing meaningful interactions, maintaining the ability to listen more than you speak, and remembering to be a human will establish the trust required to accomplish complex sales. We have seen through our own eyes that practicing this, combined with creating tailored messaging for each prospect, truly makes a difference.
Enhancing Customer Experiences
Inbound marketing efforts are great for reaching a wide audience, but for a complex sale, the prospect must feel as if they are a priority. Customers have been increasingly prioritizing their experiences with businesses and placing weight on personal interactions.
Rather than casting a net solely with inbound efforts, taking the time to personally connect with each inbound lead results in greater chances of sales success further down the pipeline. Allowing prospects the opportunity to share business pains and frustrations with experienced sales professionals creates space to learn about their needs—and, in turn, offer tailored solutions that meet their requirements.
Additionally, with more available capital to spend, many companies now have the chance to utilize products and services that can lead to business development opportunities, including technology like artificial intelligence (AI) to connect with customers.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Sales
How can AI support our original vision and give customers the experience they’re expecting?
When sales reps spend only 35.2% of their time selling, a company can end up wasting two-thirds of a rep’s salary per year because employees are burdened with tasks they were not even hired to perform. AI tools can help relieve the burden of tasks that may seem small but eventually add up.
Rather than spending hours gathering data and research prior to connecting with prospects, sales teams that utilize AI can easily access important buyer information in a fraction of the time. With less time taken up by tasks like research, there’s more time available in a sales rep’s day for building relationships, understanding prospects’ pain points, establishing a positive customer experience, and connecting them with valuable solutions.
AI tools can also take on tasks like pricing optimization, forecasting sales, and offering visibility into the sales pipeline. Many of these tasks that once took manual effort are now done quickly and easily with the help of machine learning technology. This can make processes like sales negotiations, generating insights, and lead management easier and run more smoothly, ultimately shortening the sales cycle and leading to improved close rates. Embracing this new tech can lead to revenue growth at twice the rate of GDP and boost sales by 5%.
AI as an Employee Tool, Not an Employee Replacement
AI can be a great tool for B2B sales, offering unique insight about prospects and processes while taking on tasks that once took up hours of valuable time, and we will always be interested in a method that allows salespeople more time to make calls.
Yet it must be said that AI still can’t make up for an unskilled salesperson. Even with the best intelligence, deploying inexperienced salespeople on phones with prospects for a complex sale doesn’t usually turn out well.
The key to utilizing AI efficiently is to implement it as a tool to free up time for your sales team, who must then focus on enhancing the customer experience, maintaining relationships, and managing leads. Properly qualifying leads takes a high level of business acumen, professional experience, and can be a time commitment between engaging in meaningful conversations and conducting sufficient follow-up. AI can make space for salespeople to do this, which in turn can have a positive impact on your sales and revenue goals.
Implementing the Right Solutions for Sales
Whether you have already begun to implement AI as a tool for your sales team or you are just beginning to consider it, we always recommend auditing your sales team to see if it will truly help you. If your sales team is great at closing leads but has trouble with the initial qualification, AI might not be your be-all and end-all solution. Employing a team of experienced sales professionals to engage in the outreach and interactions required to uncover potential leads can make all the difference.
Have you utilized AI for your sales team? Are you curious about how to utilize experienced salespeople as a part of your sales process? Let us know in the comments below, or contact us to learn more about outsourced lead generation programs that can boost your sales success.