Typical sales used to be a repetitive routine of call sheets and scripted conversations. Today’s B2B landscape has a whole new array of tools and tricks for sales teams to create new, lasting partnerships, leaving cold calls a thing of the past.
Analytics give professionals ammunition to build tailored proposals before they contact leads. Sales funneling software walks leads through the sales process one step at a time, and video and mobile technology make the sales process more efficient, knowledge-based and client-friendly. Here are three ways that technology has made a big impression on B2B.
Higher sales start with better leads. The more you’re able to target potential clients, the more likely they’ll be to partner with your business. Plenty of outlets dedicate their resources toward finding ways to collect quality leads. Most of the improvement comes from targeted advertising, which can deliver relevant leads on a budget. According to an eMarketer.com survey, however, the highest quality B2B leads come from third-party lead originators. These lead shops enable businesses to purchase information based on desired age, industry, salary range and many other demographic categories. These firms take the hassle out of gathering prospects. With a quality insurance lead or small business lead in hand, you can do the hard work of converting it to a sale.
Once you have a lead in your sales funnel, customer relationship management software (CRM) with keep you on track throughout the sales process. Salesforce, the most popular CRM platform, offers analytics to research leads, cloud marketing to gain new leads, and automated tools that will enable you to stay hands-on with the warmest prospects. Think of CRM software as the personal assistant you never had. It will remind you when to contact leads, keep your schedule, and file away important documents on a cloud-based platform. Research firm Gartner forecasts that CRM will be a $36.5 billion market by 2017. If you’re not using this cutting-edge sales software, you may have a hard time keeping up in the highly competitive sales space.
Communication advancements have given salespeople unprecedented tools to close deal. Video conferencing enables B2B professionals to build a more personal rapport. Now, you can meet face to face with a prospect from across the country. A report from Eyenetwork.com revealed that 65 percent of CIOs believe desk phones will be redundant by 2017. Skype and other video communication platforms are free to use, and they can help salespeople close deals faster.
Face-to-face video communication isn’t the only way professionals are using this technology, however. Live screencast tools enable salespeople to walk prospects through the online platforms associated with their businesses. This is particularly helpful for software as a service (SaaS) businesses. Screenr is one of the many web-based screen recorders. With this technology, you can create tutorials and share them with leads or connect online and hold a one-on-one session.