In this competitive and volatile environment, companies must fight to maintain and develop their business, at least stay afloat. However, you must have some process already running to connect with your audience regularly. b2b business development is primarily aligning all the customer-facing functions such as marketing, digital marketing, and sales enablement to generate business for the company. The business development goal to acquire an ideal customer ( profitable or strategic) will have a long term impact that will result in business sustenance. The strategic business development will have deep reflexes, and in-depth process to compete in the highly volatile and unpredictable business environment. A positive impact will be the results while you restructure marketing and sales towards business recovery and sustenance.
Digital business development requires working on a set of strategies, plans, tools and solutions that interconnect to generate business, income and investments. Between sales methods, marketing and digital sales enablement model, let’s review together what are the accelerators for growth in B2B. All the systems and process must identify the right customers for your best services/products that will earn profit for business sustenance.
Let’s go through the Key levers for acceleration.
Develop and enrich your value proposition.
In a highly volatile market, your life span of products and services is getting shorter. Demands of customers are ever higher. Products are commoditized, commoditization is common. Customers will find identical products and services. How to do you differentiate? In the absence of radical or disruptive innovation, architectural or incremental innovations on your products and services will help to determine.
Now the important questions are how to propose these incremental innovations and enhancements that help create a positive ripple?. Value mapping & value offering is an opportunity for you to communicate with your customer. The more you craft values and message it well, the better the brand perception, positioning and differentiate yourself from the competition.
Have CRM based Leads Generation Process
Data is the new oil! Build a marketing and Sales process with high-quality data about your prospects and customers. If there is no process of building quality data, with business intelligence, the results from CRM process will bring your goals down.
Align your marketing, sales and business development team to have access to one CRM. All relevant stakeholders will contribute to feed, nurture and convert from prospect to a sales lead, then to a customer. More the visibility, transparency and predictability on the customer life cycle, more efficiency in the whole business development process is assured.
A few CRMS are Freshworks, Zoho, Microsoft and Salesforce, Freshsales, Sellsy, Highrise and Pipedrive. Most of the applications will cover marketing campaigns, sales force automation and after-sales or support services process. Most of them are cloud-based, and access is through a subscription model.
In short, a well-used CRM will allow you to increase the sales efficiency and impact of your sales teams. A well-configured CRM can improve conversion rates while increasing the efficiency of your sales teams by providing high visibility and predictability of business.
Business development can take on very different facets. In a b2b business, both direct and indirect selling can be planned. Appointing sales executives, as well as channel partners or distributors isis needed. However, you must have the right tools to bring efficacy in the process. Tools such as partner marketing applications, distributor management applications for franchising, partnerships and stockists are available.
Initiate Partner / Distributor marketing
- Start with your business goals and objectives
- Separate the partner marketing/ channel partner goals and objectives
- The Build your go-to-market strategy to achieve partner sales goals
- Benchmark the best practices and assess routes-to-market
- Design sales & distribution coverage models and team structures
- Develop partner programs
- Align the partner/channel marketing process through Automation
- Define partner marketing Roles and Responsibility matrix and sales KPIs based performance scoreboard
Adopt relevant lead generation techniques and methodologies.
b2b companies must make sure that they have established a proper business development process and technology that adopts relevant traction to generate sales-ready leads. This technique will make sure so that even a prospect can be even converted to a business partner in the long term. Plan, configure and integrate your systems and process-based right lead seeding, lead nurturing and lead conversion models. The model can be prospect Acquisition, customer Activation, customer Retention, customer Revenue, customer Referral, Customer Advocate & Customer Alliance. For our convenience, we can abbreviate this model to AARRRAA, of course, it is fancy, but interesting for a customer life cycle perspective.
From a prospect to an Alliance with the customer- here Alliance means the customer will join as a business alliance or partner or joint venture with your firm. This value chain often happens in b2b business environment.
Finally, Have a full proof sales enablement process.
The objective of sales enablement is to have shortened the b2b sales cycle. Provide a sales experience to the customer as well as the sales folks.
Sales enablement is defined in different terms. Someone will say, it is about sales team and productivity., other about enabling the sales process with all required digital assets and people. B2B sales need knowledge selling and enabling digital assets through the touchpoints of the customer is vital. It also says the right content, at the right time, in the right place. This thought process came out of the command ” Do not sell your product, but provide a sales experience” So how to provide a sales experience whether offline or online.
Gartner defines sales activation as “the activities, systems, processes, and information that support and facilitate knowledge-based sales interactions with customers and prospects.”
For Forester, Sales Enablement is designed to provide buyers with added value and to engage buyers: # Buyer experience. At the same time, sales productivity increases through the integration and visualization of data and the development of content in and for distribution.
Through this sales enablement process, business development persons must have a better understanding of your brand identity.
Your team is in constant contact with your prospects and B2B customers. They are the brand ambassadors or prominent voice of your company. They cannot be disconnected from marketing considerations, which set your brand’s discourse following market opportunities and the expectations of your prospects.
To optimize your b2b prospecting, your B2B business development & sales representatives must be aware of the following elements:
Good visibility of the ecosystem in which they will operate. Provide enough information through CRM and related sales enablement tools and process. Tools and method to communicate well about the company. Provide relevant guidelines to generate leads and convert the leads to even as your business partners. Marketing will focus on the value proposition, which market to focus and what price, however, as a business developer, the focus must be to optimize the results in bringing the right customers and revenue to the organization. For a B2B business development executives Business availability, Continuity and sustenance are the everyday vocabularies. More and more companies are recruiting more business development manager profiles than sales. Very versatile business developer masters both the sales part, also acquires solid knowledge in marketing and communication.