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Enabling you to sell to the Modern B2B Buyer - Part 1 of 12

Sales teams need to change. Enabling your sales team with modern and easy to use tools will help you to improve sales and productivity. This series is about selling in a new way and in the way that makes your Ideal customers want to buy. 

In this series we will show you how you can be the best sales team in eleven actionable steps...

We find that most sales teams are selling the same way they did 10 years ago because they don’t know a better way is available and all sales activity is manual just using Outlook and Excel. They haven’t taken the time to understand how their Ideal customers buy and only sending out generic sales information with nothing that differentiates their salespeople or company. A lot of the companies we talk to have excellent products and services but their sales activity needs to be updated.

Technology has changed significantly in recent years and this series is about showing how salespeople need to change too. This is a different age where the buyer has all the power, there’s a lot more competition, and where sellers will become redundant if they can’t add value.


The way B2B buyers purchase has changed considerably in the last two decades. Buyers can research extensively online, and research has shown that 57% of a buyer’s journey is done before ever contacting a salesperson. This means if you don’t change the way you sell, you might miss opportunities and never be contacted. The reality is; buyer behavior has changed so much that the traditional sales approach of 10 years ago simply isn’t as effective.

Sellers have to start selling the way that buyers want to buy. And most important is knowing how your Ideal customers buy. The question here is; have you ever done any Ideal customer research?

More for sales reps to do...

Yes. There’s more and more for salespeople to do. More targets. More channels. More customers. More competition. BUT, the idea of “sales is getting harder” should really be “traditional sales tactics are losing their power”. Other industries have led the way in evolving their sales activity and now it’s time for small to medium sized companies in Automotive and Motorsport to catch up. Updating your sales activity will be a genuine differentiator and give you a significant competitive advantage. If you cater to what your Ideal customers want, sales won’t be so hard after all.

Sellers are feeling the heat...

Most sales people agree that prospecting is the toughest part of the sales process. Salespeople need help qualifying leads, whether it’s improving how you target and research your Ideal customers or how you engage and progress prospects once you’ve started a sales conversation.


A serious disconnect between buyers and salespeople...

Hubspot recently conducted a sales perception survey and found a serious disconnect between buyers and salespeople. Buyers who had a neutral or negative sales experience say the representatives were pushy, didn’t listen, weren’t helpful, and couldn’t prove value. Value is the important part here. A salesperson has to add value over and above what a buyer can find on their own by researching online.


Most companies think the solution is just to do more of the same...

So, is the solution doing more of the same? Approaching more contacts? Sending more emails? Making more calls? Going to more events?

Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result is the definition of madness.

What really needs to change?

  • You should build trust with your buyers. Your salespeople need to help people make buying decisions, more than just trying to make a sale. It’s about adding knowledge and value to the conversation. Sales representatives need to ask themselves: Can I help the prospect? Do they need my help? And most importantly, do they want my help?

  • Tailor your sales content to the wants and needs of your buyer. As you learn more about your leads over time, you can better personalise your messages to their specific needs.

  • There’s a whole host of technologies that you should leverage to understand what your buyers want and which buyers are visiting your website, opening your emails, and even what pages they view in your sales documents.

       By having the right approach you will be able to:

  1. Identify the behaviors of your Ideal customer

  2. Have better qualified lead

  3. Improve sales and productivity

  • You have to be Buyer-Centric. Basing your entire sales process on your Ideal customers, rather than how you want to sell. In interactions with buyers, you need to actively inquire about and listen to the buyer's challenges and goals. As a consultative advisor and expert, you can then share ideas for how the buyer can accomplish their goals or address their challenges. Sometimes, it’s in the sales representative's best interest to point buyers to a different product or service. It’s about working smart and not wasting time.


Top tips for being the best sales team 


We’ve talked a lot about the theory of how to sell in the age of the buyer. In this series we'll give specifics of what you need to do:

  1. Generate leads from your website

  2. Prioritise Active buyers

  3. Know who visits your website

  4. Tailor your sales emails

  5. Automate your sales activity

  6. Engage prospects on your website

  7. Make it easy to book meetings

  8. Track and improve all sales activity

  9. Easily find and use sales content

  10. Respond quickly to leads

  11. Track every sales attempt

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About the author

Picture of James Walters

James Walters is the Commercial director at The Tree Group, a sales agency that helps companies sell into Automotive, Motorsport, and Defence. He has worked with leading motorsport brands including Brembo, Prodrive, Aston Martin Racing, Nissan Motorsport International (NISMO), Hella, AP Racing, Arai, and Simpson.