Are you looking for new ways to boost the sales of your B2B business?
In this blog post, I’m going to share 3 top sales tips and techniques for your B2B business; we’re going to discuss:
- How to implement a better sales enablement strategy
- How to leverage social media to sell more
- And how to leverage social proof to close more sales
1. Sales enablement: give your sales team the tools and knowledge they need
Sales enablement is not just a buzzword – it’s essential to continuously growing your sales.
That’s because in order to be able to successfully sell your product, your sales people have certain necessities. There are basically 4 essential elements to sales enablement:
- Knowledge: meaning, they need knowledge about your business and about your products or services in order to convince someone else to buy them, especially when they’re just starting out, although it’s important to keep coaching your sales people over time.
- Content: another important element is content – meaning, content that they will use to nurture your leads and ultimately convert them into paying customers.
- Tools: sales people need a number of tools to aid them in this process, such as CRM tools for keeping track of leads, prospects, and customers, automation tools, tools for sales people who operate in the field, and so on.
- And finally, communication: namely, an easy way to communicate and collaborate with their colleagues and their superiors. It goes without saying that there needs to be good collaboration between departments such as sales and marketing. You can facilitate these conversations using collaboration tools for teams to make things easy for your team.
So in order to enable your salespeople to make more sales, you need to provide them with the knowledge, the content and the tools they need. How exactly do you that?
For sales training, you can use something like MindTickle which is in effect a sales enablement tool that puts the focus on onboarding and coaching/training.
The beauty of it is that you can pretty much automate the whole process of onboarding and/or coaching your team:
- Assign learning paths automatically
- Access to in-depth analytics to help understand your team’s performance and optimize it
- Sales gamification to help boost sales across your company
Most importantly though, it allows you to provide your team with all the information they need to sell. Plus, it saves you a huge amount of time with onboarding and training if you can do it all online and in an automated way.
As for delivering the right content to your salespeople, there are numerous content curation tools that you can leverage. For example, you can use Flipboard to create a digital magazine where you share relevant content:
Image source: Flipboard
Or, a tool like Wakelet which, like Flipboard, allows you to create pages where you curate content. Create a private one to share content just with your team.
And finally, tools – this is where you should you take the time to discuss with your salespeople what sort of tools they need and what features are most important to them. There are a plethora of CRM tools to choose from - check out my blog post for the best ones - and only they can know for sure what features they need most.
2. Leverage social media for social selling
Social media has rapidly become a platform for salespeople too – not just marketing. LinkedIn in particular is a very powerful tool for B2B social selling, although other platforms can be very successful depending on what your business is and, most importantly, who your target audience is.
That’s why before starting with social selling you need to spend the time to find out where best to reach your target audience on social media.
Leverage social listening tools like Brandwatch to monitor social media and your audience. This will not only help you find the right channels for your business, but it will also enable you to gather a wealth of valuable information about your audience – such as their needs and interests.
Once all of this knowledge is available, your sales people can start searching for leads as well as engaging them to nurture them into clients. That’s where social selling really shines: social media gives your sales team a platform where they can engage with prospects in a meaningful way as well as share with them the content they want/need – the content that will help convert them.
For those who want to be more hands-on and find even more opportunities for social selling, it’s worth looking into the LinkedIn Sales Navigator which was created for salespeople to find and target prospects faster and more efficiently.
For example, you have access to advanced lead/company search:
Image source: LinkedIn
As you can see above, you can really narrow down your search with all the filtering options, such as postal codes, school, titles and function, security level, and total years working for the company, among others.
Plus, you’ll also get lead recommendations based on your needs and you can integrate with a CRM tool to make sure you log all your activity and interactions.
3. Make the most out of your customer testimonials
How much thought do you put into your social proof and customer testimonials?
Testimonials can be highly effective sales tools because they help convince prospects that your product is a great solution. After all, if so-and-so loved it so much, then perhaps the salesperson isn’t lying to me about the quality of the product or service.
Plus, if someone is going to get into business with you, it’s not rocket science that they would want to know who else you’ve worked with and how happy they were with the service.
So, how can you make the most of your customer testimonials, beyond a hard-to-find page on your website where you list a few text testimonials?
There are actually a few different ways to stand out. For example:
Use the work you’ve done with a client as the basis of a case study. IBM do this on their website where they highlight their clients and the work they’ve done together in the IBM Client Center:
Image source: IBM
Real time customer testimonials: using a widget like this one from Brand24, you can actually pull live social mentions of your brand/testimonials automatically wherever you’ve placed the widget on your website. What’s so great about this form of social proof is that your website visitors can actually engage the customers who are talking about you and ask them questions directly.
- Create a video instead: basically, instead of asking for a written customer testimonial, you can instead film the testimonial and post it as a video. It’s no secret that video tends to perform extremely well both in terms of engagement and conversion rates so it can make a much bigger impact than a written testimonial.
The key takeaway
While the basic sales concepts might remain the same, other factors are rapidly changing. Prospects and customers are more informed than ever and they have more tools at their disposal to research you and find alternatives. That’s why you need to be leveraging old proven sales techniques while at the same time also being open to the new.