Three Things to Keep in Mind While Creating a B2B Sales Process During a Global Downtime
It’s been nearly five months of being told how “unprecedented” these times are; we get it. Businesses of every size and industry have taken a hit in some way or another(B2B).
They’ve either made it past the sink-or-swim phase, or they haven’t.
They’ve either created an employee safety plan, or they haven’t.
They’ve either onboarded new tools, or they haven’t.
Now that the novelty of 24/7 pajama pants has worn off, it’s time for the businesses that have made it through all of the above to get serious about the future of their B2B sales process. There are many suggestions on how companies could go about doing this. So, we’ve boiled it down to three simple, actionable steps your company can virtually (no pun intended) implement today.
Shift your focus towards growing industries
For the larger part of the pandemic, our brick & mortar PandaDoc customers have had to close their doors. And in that time, they’ve had to get creative to ensure they’d someday be able to open them again. Their innovative thinking inspired our own as we took a second look at the landscape of industries mostly untouched by our existing sales process.
We identified healthcare and education as two untapped markets for us. With all of the changes both industries made in response to COVID, they experienced a need for a tool like PandaDoc for the first time. We jumped on the opportunity and worked with our legal team to quickly achieve FERPA and HIPPA compliance.
My suggestion to other businesses looking to adapt their B2B process to new markets during a global downtime is this: don’t rule out an industry because of compliance standards. Those can always be met. Time will pass no matter what, so spend it working towards earning the compliance your business needs to serve those new markets. If you’re unsure as to which compliance requirements you’d need to meet, use your sales team to recon that information from prospects.
Connect your customers to your product faster
My second tip will require a little more leg work from your development team. Since your sales team can no longer go to the customer, make it as easy as possible for them to come to you. We’ve done this at PandaDoc by creating and displaying a toll-free number as a banner at the top of our website.
Check out the list below for our suggestions on how to increase deal velocity during a pandemic:
- Monitor and improve speed to lead times
- Automate processes with digital workflows
- Improve or create a lead scoring process
- Create and implement new communication channels for prospects (chat, text, or toll-free number)
Copy and paste it somewhere you can easily reference it. Check off the boxes as you accomplish them by working cross-functionally with other teams at your company.
ABT so you can ABC
Always be training so you can always be closing. Let me say it again for the people in the back, always be training so you can always be closing. Your B2B sales process will never improve if your team doesn’t. No matter the role, no matter the years they have under their belt, your sales team deserves current and consistent training to set them up for the best chance of success in the “new normal”.
At PandaDoc, we’ve ramped up our sales training and the number of role plays considerably so that our team can continue to close. This has included training on our new markets of healthcare and education, I suggest that if you incorporate step 1 into your sales process that your upcoming training reflect industry-specific best-practices for those on your team unfamiliar with them. We’ve seen tremendous growth in revenue from our dedication to ABT, after all, training is what turns start-ups into more professional sales cultures.
So, while yes, these times are “unprecedented”, they are not impossible. Every business will have to go through its own period of trial and error to find the right combination of people and processes that works. PandaDoc did, too. But, our dedication to our customers and belief in the power of our product is what allowed us to eventually find our version of a “perfect for now” B2B sales process. Keep the three items above in mind while experiencing your own trials and errors, you’ll be glad you did.