B2B Articles - January 11, 2016
The key to selling anything is to gain trust and build tight relationships. The stakes are much higher in a B2B context because the customers are often thinking about long-term solutions to make their businesses more efficient. Therefore, to be successful, you must build strong relationships with your customers through understanding their business's needs and providing tangible value.
Winning with trust is different; it's not a zero-sum game. We all benefit from it. -- Charles Green
When AOL took over Microsoft's ad sales team, it did so knowing there would be a mutual benefit. AOL could reap the benefits of selling ads on Microsoft's vast properties, while Microsoft could benefit from AOL using Bing as a search engine instead of Google.
It's vital that you understand what the business wants and needs to fix its problems or to become more efficient. This way you know where you can provide value to your customer. You can do this by simply connecting the dots as to where your products and services can benefit your customer's business in some way: by cutting costs, growing revenue, making a stronger product, or improving the company's efficiency.
Research and a clear understanding of the buyer persona will help solidify the opportunity. Investing in research in order to attract the right leads and offer the right solution will provide more secure relationships.
Here's an article on how to create B2B buyer personas.
Charles Green, a Forbes contributor, wrote, "Winning with trust is different; it's not a zero-sum game. We all benefit from it." Trust is the key to any relationship, whether that's in a personal or working context. Make sure your business earns your customers' trust and respect so that they know they are getting a good deal and are comfortable doing business with you. Trust is built over time; however, you can start by asking questions about the business and its people, while answering the customer's questions to appease his or her concerns.
Every market has a pool of competitors that provide a similar product or service. It's vital that you know why your company is better for your customers than your competitors are. Provide tangible evidence of how you will improve their businesses. Use data and research, test runs and demonstrations, among other methods. However you go about it, prove to the customers that your product or service is better in a way that they can understand and one that makes sense for their needs.
Ultimately, B2B sales are all about nurturing a relationship, which is built on a foundation of trust, research and business value.
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