There's a lot of sales opportunities -if you know when to take them

Thought Leadership

22nd February 2016

There’s a lot of sales opportunities – if you know when to take them

There’s a lot of sales opportunities but you can make or break them

Broadley Speaking has pioneered an omnichannel approach to finding, building and nurturing sales opportunities and developing new business.

‘Omnichannel’ has been a bit of a buzzword in marketing for a little while now. It’s usually heard in the context of B2C marketing or ‘customer experience’. Quite a few years ago now, we worked with our client Syngro talking with Marketing Directors and Customer Experience Directors about their consultancy and software services and how they could use them to track customer feedback and customer experience across the complete range of media platforms. Nifty stuff! It rightly came with a high price barrier to entry which was why we were targeting some of the major consumer brands in the world (with some success I might add).

Having been involved in B2B sales and marketing for over 33 years I have often felt that it has been the poor cousin in sales and marketing terms to B2C. Even in 1983 when we were launching epoch defining B2B computing titles when I was at EMAP, they were never quite as glamorous as EMAP’s ‘sexy beast’ titles like Smash Hits, and subsequently Q and Empire. I think I am right in saying no one from EMAP Business and Computer Publications went on to launch a stellar pop career like Pet Shop Boy, Neil Tennant at Smash Hits at the time – so perhaps that proves the point. A number of us did go on to do some pretty interesting stuff around technology and marketing – like some of the very first digital marketing in the early to mid 90’s.

Not only did Neil and Chris make lots of money but also had some useful insights amidst the post ironic comment.

“ Oh, there’s a lot of opportunities

If you know when to take them, you know?

There’s a lot of opportunities

If there aren’t, you can make them

Make or break them”

In three decades I have come across just one person who thought they had an infinite prospect pool – most of us, on closer inspection, can actually rationalise sets  of potential targets, that we need to turn in to suspects, move to being prospects and then into fully qualified opportunities sitting in a sales pipeline. If you play your cards right, there are a lot of opportunities if you know when to take them – and if there aren’t, you can make them! That’s exactly where professional new business development comes in. With the type of work we do at Broadley Speaking sales opportunities often start when the prospect says “No”.

In our experience only a small percentage of sales opportunities just land in your lap. If you call a large list of moderately relevant companies you are likely to find a few for whom your call is timely, they have already worked out they have a need, and would like to take the conversation further.

For the vast majority the standard position is “No”, “We have it in hand” , “Not now”, “We have a supplier in place”, “We tried that before and its not for us..”, “We’ll put it out to tender in 2 years time” etc etc. As far as sales opportunities goes this is when you ‘can make or break them’.

If you choose not to challenge this status quo not only do you fail to begin to realise the potential sales opportunities, you actually run the risk of closing them off for the future – by, effectively, reinforcing their objections. They are voicing it and, through your silence, you are acknowledging it as right.

This is why when it comes to creating sales opportunities for companies selling complex products and services to senior people a traditional ‘spray and pray’ telemarketing approach is, potentially, so damaging. It’s not only not productive, it’s positively counter productive.

However, we have just made this sort of complex new business development even smarter. Still at the heart of what we do is the skilled work of finding the full group of buyers and influencers in the buying grid. In many cases these are across different sites and often in different countries. We begin to understand their buying type, their different buying influences and their individual profiles and communicate across the group to begin to catalyse the change involved in any significant B2B purchase. This work takes skill, persistence, good training, and an intelligent and a nuanced approach.

So what’s new? I would make an argument that what makes ‘good selling’ has pretty much remained the same over the last 3 decades. So with perfect syncretism Broadley Speaking has developed a suite of omnichannel B2B sales and marketing tools developed to maximise business development opportunities (and budgets). It allows us to build smart strategies to create new sales opportunities.  This approach we call Omnia – it’s already being used by companies small and large to drive new business development. It’s been received as “best in class” , “outstanding” and as “a game changer”.

Call us on 0800 988 7253 and, after we have learned more about your new business development challenges, we’ll happily arrange a web demo to show how our approach may be able to support you in meeting them.

 

 

 

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