You’ve got a great solution, product or service set at a competitive price. You’ve launched a marketing campaign with a lot of initial traction. Your situation is a dream – until the sales report falls well below expectations. Your dream quarter has plunged into nightmare territory.
What’s going on?
It’s a question that JMS Elite hears frequently on our monthly national sales expo visits. Although it’s a simple one to answer – your customer experience is not aligned with your sales expectations – the solution may require deeper organizational introspection. It may also require you to act fast.
Why the rush? Consider this infographic from MarketingPilgrims. Their survey forecasts that the customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator by 2020.
The methods your team employs over the course of the B2B sales cycle could become the prime indicator of sales in as little as five years. Your company’s hard work at the front end may be squandered if your sales team isn’t creating a meaningful interaction.
Here are a few of JMS Elite’s favorite takeaways from the infographic:
Don’t Mistake Tech For Customer Experience
70% of buying experiences are based on how the customer feels. A technology-rich experience works well for businesses managing retail consumers but the B2B climate is much more nuanced. The longer sales cycles and expense associated with a B2B contract requires nurturing, not management. Retail consumers are prone to impulse. B2B clients are predisposed to take their time. A skilled sales team has to respond to those sales cycle highs and lows in an organic, genuine manner. They’ve got to make meaningful adjustments rather than scripted pitches. They don’t have the luxury of relying on sales apps to boost the bottom line.
Your Clients Will Pay More For Better (Service)
Clients value connections. There’s no doubt that protracted sales cycles are a result of recessionary spending practices. No one wants to part with capital too quickly, if at all. A positive experience, however, could prompt your client to spend more – even during a recession. That’s where the sales team can truly make a difference. Commitment to the client is characteristic of a team that secures the long-term relationships for your business. A staff that simply makes calls isn’t poised to successfully convert your leads into sales.
Your Competitor Is Waiting
Customers are four times more likely to buy from your competitor if problems are service related.
A client unhappy with your service will seek a better sales environment – even if your price and product are superior.
Don’t give competitors this inadvertent and easily rectified edge. If you’re struggling to differentiate yourself from the pack, improving your customer experience could tip the scales back in your favor. It’s about creating value as much as it’s about creating revenue.
Customer experience is no longer confined to the mercurial world of B2C commerce. It has solid and measurable impact on B2B sales and is gaining in importance every year. Don’t let 2020 sneak up on you.