Today’s modern buying trend puts little stock in the B2B seller. However, with a reframed strategy of “Seek to Serve, Not to Sell™,” B2B sellers can provide solutions that deliver true value, build relationships — and land long-term sales.
Though a B2B buyer’s tools, resources, control and journey have drastically changed in our modern world, the large majority still crave one thing from their sellers: compelling, relevant value.
B2B buyers navigate in a world where their consumer brands are present in many platforms of their day-to-day lives; these brands offer up information that tells their consumers, “We know who you are. We know what you really need.”
And a buyer, be that a consumer or a B2B prospect, rarely believes they need the product or service your B2B organization hopes to push, regardless how much you wish otherwise. Rather, they desire a seller who knows the specific and real pains they are suffering and can provide support to overcome those business problems.
This is a straightforward and noble concept. Yet the major challenge presents itself when we start looking to the prevalent habits and trends of B2B buyers, which reveal a gap that is widening between buyers and sellers.
The Modern B2B Buying Trend
According to a recent study conducted by Aberdeen Group, B2B buyers seek-out sellers who can sharpen the buyer’s competitive advantage and provide an appealing long-term solution vision, among many other things. Likewise, 65% of buyers still see value in discussing their situations with salespeople, according to a recent CSO Insights study.
Yet, 30% of the time buyers are not engaging sellers until after they have identified and clarified their needs — and another 26% are not engaging with sellers until after they have identified a solution (CSO Insights).
Uncovered in this same CSO Insights study, though, was a massive number of buyers — 90% — who noted they would be willing to engage salespeople earlier in their buying process, that is if the salesperson could provide specific value.
The gap between buyers and sellers remains in large part because of this reality: B2B sellers are not offering what their target B2B buyer finds as valuable.
Finding Value in B2B Buyer Pain
A seller who “Seeks to Serve, Not to Sell™” begins first by understanding how to deliver relevant value to their target buyer, long before there are dollar signs associated with the relationship.
This translates to a buyer’s pain: What business problems are keeping them and their organization from reaching their goals? What regulations does this target buyer have to navigate through that is hindering their business? What market conditions are they facing?