There are several circumstances that may keep your team from being their most awesome. Insufficient training, lack of experience, subpar sales tools… It could be any of a million things. B2B sales myths shouldn’t be one of them.
Myths hold you back. It can keep your team from making the most of opportunities. When you want a productive and effective sales team, your best bet is to keep these B2B sales myths from seeping into their work habits and mindsets.
B2B Sales Myths 1: The Product Sells Itself
This might be one of sales’ biggest myths. It is convenient too because it absolves the salesperson of responsibility. If the product sold itself, then it’s to blame if it doesn’t sell, right?
You may have the best product in the world. But, remember that salespersons are today’s product differentiators. You hold the power to make your product shine. Otherwise, it shares the shelf with the rest – generic in what it offers and its value.
Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How To Think Differently author and psychiatrist Gregory Berns says it succinctly: “A person can have the greatest idea in the world…but if that person can’t convince enough other people, it doesn’t matter.’’
Forget this myth. Instead, become the amazing salesperson that you can be.
B2B Sales Myths 2: Cold Calls Are Dead; It’s Time To Go Social
While there’s no denying the power of social media today, you shouldn’t write off cold calling.
Outbound sales calls are still going strong. According to research conducted by Quota Factory’s Peter Gracey and The Bridge Group Inc.’s Matt Bertuzzi, there is an increasing openness in speaking with sales representatives, jumping from 38% to 39.6% within a year.
This indicates an acknowledgement of what you can offer your prospects through cold calling: in-depth information and customized solutions. Both of these are nearly impossible to achieve through social media. You need to call.
B2B Sales Myths 3: Sales Is A Numbers Game
It is easy to look at quantity when you want to point the blame for under-performance. Your team is not making the sales quota? It must be because they’re not making enough calls, right? Wrong.
Quality is difficult to measure but, most of the time, it is what plagues an ineffective sales team. Are you passing on qualified leads? Is each member of your team adequately trained for every stage of your sales process? Do you employ modern software and systems that automate repetitive sales tasks?
Take a look at all aspects of your sales process and you’ll see that it’s not just about picking up the phone and making a call. Assess everything, from your prospecting and lead qualification to the systems and tools that your team deals with. Then, when all’s in place, work with your team to make each call matter.
B2B Sales Myths 4: Limit Your Follow Ups And Then Move On
Persistence pays; and many of today’s sales leaders are proof of it. And yet, oddly, this B2B myth persists. The average sales rep calls leads only 1.3 times before they give up, according to a Hubspot study.
This is a formula for lost opportunity. A typical qualified lead needs more than two phone calls before they become interested. And still, more work comes after. You have to guide your leads through each stage of your funnel, providing a nudge / follow-up whenever necessary.
So, don’t quit. Instead, classify your prospects into two groups: the active leads and the passive leads. Active leads are ready to buy today or in the near future. They are responsive to your follow-ups. They may even ask for further information. Passive leads can still be qualified leads but their purchase timeframe is longer.
Plan unique follow-ups for these specific groups, wherever they are in your funnel. Create a follow-up schedule that considers their specific needs. Use different follow-up channels, such as calls, emails, SMS and social media. Automate the process using your CMS system so that you’re on top of each one of your leads.
Likewise, take note of an MIT study that specifies the best and worst times for follow-ups. According to the study, there are 26% more opened emails on Thursdays compared to Mondays, the worst day for emails. Thursday is also 49% better for phone calls compared to Tuesday, the worst day to call.
B2B Sales Myths 5: The Customer is Always Right
If prospective customers are always right and know everything, then your sales team might as well quit. Their sales job is meaningless.
The truth is actually the opposite. Customers don’t always know what’s right. They don’t know what’s available and what’s the better choice. It is the salesperson’s job to diagnose the customer’s pain points and offer the best solution. The salesperson highlights the value of his product, and how it fits the lives of his target market.
Hubspot’s Mark Roberge (SVP of Sales and Services) says it best: “You know you are running a modern sales team when selling feels more like the relationship between a doctor and a patient and less like a relationship between a salesperson and a prospect. When you go in to see your doctor and she asks you about your symptoms, you tell her the truth. You trust that she can diagnose your problem and prescribe the right medication…. It’s no longer about interrupting, pitching and closing. It is about listening, diagnosing and prescribing.”
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