This blogs looks at how your organization can take the high ground in opportunity-rich but hotly contested marketplaces.
First, however, a short explanation of how the sales environment has changed recently, and why selling – for most organizations, at least – needs radically to change in response.
The World Changed
We all recognize the fact that, over the past few years, new technologies have enabled – and are still enabling – fundamental changes in the ways we live and work, but most of us are too busy being busy to take time out to think through the implications in detail.
What many of us do experience are new sales challenges that seem to come out of thin air:
- For instance, generally, it’s getting harder to close sales: buyers seem to be more demanding than in the past, and are sometimes downright intolerant. All they seem to be interested in is cheapness. It all has the effect of extending sales cycles, diluting sales conversion, and forcing up the cost of selling.
- Then there are problems between Sales and Marketing. All too often, Sales complains that Marketing isn’t producing materials that ‘work’ with buyers, so they have a go at creating their own collateral. This sidetracks the sales people away from prospect contact, and wastes huge amounts of time and money.
- No-one is happy. Buyers complain that selling organisations don’t understand their needs. Marketing complains that sales people undermine their strategies and brands. And Sales feels misunderstood, put upon and demoralised. No wonder the churn in sales forces is so high.
The fact is, the world in which business-to-business sales now take place is very different from
the equivalent of ten years ago … and it maybe takes a downturn – or will it be a full-blown
recession? – to focus the mind on the Sales issues that are raised.