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It’s a Cruel, Cruel Summer for your Sales, Content and Value Enablement Plans

By Tom Pisello | July 25, 2021

Leveraging better B2B sales engagement process, facilitation content and financial justification to stand out and sell more

When it comes to selling B2B solutions, you aren’t imagining if you think the game has gotten a lot harder. And the reason? It’s not because your primary way to engage buyers is now remote and virtual!

Recent research from Forrester, revealed in our latest EVOLVERs Meetup with analyst Steven Silver, points to a significant increase in internal decision-making friction for your customers.

Forrester reveals that buyers are doing more diligence than ever before they make a purchase decision. In fact:

With more interactions, difficulty gaining consensus amongst ever expanding buying committees, and executive / finance scrutiny, a significant lengthening of the process has resulted, with one in three purchase decisions taking four months or longer (a 70% increase from before).

So how can you help buyers overcome the internal process friction and avoid costly delays in purchase decisions?

We provide three tips to help avoid the increased Decision Friction:

1) Make every interaction stand out and count – More interactions with solution providers means you have more opportunities to shine, but you need to make sure you differentiate your engagements from the competition, and you still make every precious minute count.

Delivering a “show up and throw up” canned presentation or demonstrating every feature of your solution exhaustively isn’t going to cut it.

Arm your sellers with interactive presentation and content, that helps prompt the seller through interactive discovery, and helps the seller “create a personalized buyer journey”, vectoring to the right storytelling vignettes to match the priority buyer challenges and discuss / demonstrate the relevant use cases, solutions and success stories.

Checkout some examples here:

2) Arm your champions with facilitation content – If you rely on your buyer to figure out all the steps involved in the buying process and what’s needed for consensus and approval, especially across a large team you can assure frustration and delays.

Although every buying team and process is unique, there are some common sets of content you can proactively provide to help gain consensus. Relevant references and success stories, security validation, competitive comparisons, business case justification are just a few elements that you might proactively deliver at the right time to the right stakeholders to streamline the process, foster trust and remove friction!

To make sure your sellers are armed with the right content to proactively share with the buying committee at the right time empower your sellers with:

a) Guided-selling Workspaces, showing exactly which content to use in each selling scenario and step in the process.

b) Intelligent content recommendations, knowing what has worked when and with who to drive positive outcomes and promoting the sharing of that content with the buying group.

As well, with ever expanding decision committees, emailing the content to the buyers isn’t enough. It’s too easy for the content to get lost in the mix, difficult for the buyer to forward and share, and you don’t know if the champion or anyone else on the decision-making team received much less consumed the content. Instead, enable your sellers to create a shared Buying Workspace, a collaborative portal sent to the buying team, and loaded the right content and tools to help facilitate the decision-making process while validating the consumption of content by the buyers and sharing with all decision-makers.

Checkout how Sealed Air leveraged guided-selling Workspaces, intelligent content recommendations and more forr their Strategic Account management and buying enablement –

3) Deliver financial justification to frugal executives and finance decision-makers – when Executives and Finance leaders are involved in a decision, you must be sure you can pass their scrutiny. This means:

a) Making sure the proposal is aligned with solving a priority business objective, one that the leadership team will actually invest in solving.

b) Assuring that the proposed solution delivers a tangible business outcome (think saving money, boosting productivity, or growing business revenue), fast payback and significant return on investment (ROI), speaking to lower risk with greater reward.

Sales Enablement can help sellers by providing interactive value assessment tools, designed to automate the development and delivery of credible financial justification to executives and financial decision-makers.

Sellers can directly use the value assessment tools to quickly discover profile information and challenges from the buying team and using research and case study benchmarks the tool can then tally current costs / opportunities and automatically estimate potential business value outcomes, payback and ROI.

Checkout this great example of leveraging Value Assessment Tools with NxStage –

Learn more about interactive Value Assessment Tools here –

The Bottom-Line

Although remote engagements and virtual selling present a challenge, changes in your customers decision making process are making getting to “Yes” even harder. There is now significantly more friction in the buying process, with:

a) More interactions
b) More diverse decision-makers and consensus challenges
c) More executive and finance decision-maker scrutiny.

No wonder, buying decisions are delayed, with more Decision Friction than ever before according to Forrester research.

Our advice to overcoming the Decision Friction that Forrester uncovered centers around these three actions you can take now to properly enable your commercial teams for success:

1) Make every interaction stand out and count – with interactive presentations and content to help differentiate the engagement and create a personalized journey for each unique buyer.

2) Arm your champions with facilitation content – with workspaces to arm sellers with the right content to facilitate each step in the decision, and arm buyers with content to convince and gain consensus across the buying committee.

3) Deliver financial justification to frugal executives and finance decision-makers – with interactive value assessment tools to develop financial justification business case analyses and reports to convince frugal executives and finance decision makers.

#salesenablement #contentenablement #valueenablement #Forrester #digitalselling

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