According to Forrester Research, one million B2B salespeople will see their jobs replaced by self-service, automated systems by 2020. This forecast can be alarming to both businesses and salespeople. Even though there are advancements of technologies available for marketing or sales, for many reasons, it doesn’t mean that businesses must acquire them.
Other than the fact that machines are still infallible, they don’t have that one characteristic that makes salespeople relevant to marketing companies; the ability to connect to customers. That said, salespeople must understand their capabilities and emphasize to their relevance to marketing companies. Don’t know how to begin? Read these 5 things you should remember to keep yourself relevant as a salesperson?
Gartner defines big data as high-volume, high-velocity, and high-variety information assets. With the latter value being the main driver of engagements according to a survey by New Vantage Partners, salespeople still remain relevant even the latest marketing machineries. Saying that human connection makes salespeople relevant, however, is an understatement. While intuition plays a significant role in the anaylsis of data, it should be accompanied with knowledge in processing and extraction.
Social media has substantially changed the game for marketers. In fact, social proof, one of the infamous sales-driver, has increased the buying power this generation came to know now. Auto-response bots is one prototype designed to help speed up the growth pace of business. Or is it? Unexpectedly, marketers have found that they have become customer pet peeves. In fact, it’s becoming so ridiculous that customers tend to make fun of them. Today, customers are more sophisticated in terms of product and customer experience standards. If you give your targets something similar to an auto-response, you’ll most likely lose a potential customer.
Whether processed and extracted by machines or not, data is crucial to the process of choosing a marketing effort. The advantage salespeople have over the former, however, is personal touch. Human connection plays an important role in sending a brand message. A salesperson’s skill to reflect on these data will make him relevant to marketing.
The last person to stay predisposed to traditional marketing or sales strategies should be the salesperson. In this age, the ‘market’ for sales jobs demands you differentiate yourself through creativity and in-depth analysis. In today’s setting, the salesperson must not only be articulate and skilled in building rapport with clients or customers but also creative with the use of collected data.
Sales efforts revolve around acquisitions and loyal customers. Meaning, it isn’t just about attracting customers or being on the leads but maintaining customers as well. Not only is this method relatively cheap, but it also strengthens your brand’s reputation as a good one. By having more acquisitions with a competitive number of repeat sales, you prove your value to the ‘market’.
The modern salesperson must know more than just collecting, processing, and extracting value from data. Always consider the needs of your customers as audiences for your marketing strategy. Remember that modern buyers, the sophisticated ones, need more than just fast auto-replies. The human touch, which is felt in genuinely made replies is a must when sending a customer experience with an exclamation point.
Engagement is measured by acquisition and repeat sales. To get loyal customers, use your unique capability as a human to build rapport which no machine can ever replace. What does the data say about the design or the strategy? Does it suggest you follow specific interests of the people involved in the survey or collection of data? The job requires you to challenge yourself with these new waves of customers.
Technology indeed has proven itself in the marketing world today. But, even though it promises to drive sales and speed up your business’s growth in a cost-effective way, there’s nothing better than it can do than a salesperson when it comes to building a relationship with customers.
- Arthur, Liza. “Five Years From Now, CMOs Will Spend More on IT Than CIOs Do,” Forbes. www.forbes.com/sites/lisaarthur/2012/02/08/five-years-from-now-cmos-will-spend-more-on-it-than-cios-do/#3cb3894e16a3
- Hoar, Andy. “Death of a (B2B) Salesman
One Million US B2B Salespeople Will Lose Their Jobs to Self-Service eCommerce by 2020,” Forrester. April 13, 2015. www.forrester.com/report/Death+Of+A+B2B+Salesman/-/E-RES122288
- Ruthfield, Mark. “What Salespeople Need to Know to Stay Relevant in Digital Marketing,” Marketing Profs. March 11, 2016. m.marketingprofs.com/opinions/2016/29510/what-salespeople-need-to-know-to-stay-relevant-in-digital-marketing
- “Top 10 Big Data Trends 2017,” Tableau. www.tableau.com/resource/top-10-big-data-trends-2017
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