At this point in time, everybody knows that big data is essential for improving the customer experience, but most companies don’t leverage that data to help optimize their sales forces. They make scads of data available to their teams, but they don’t put procedures or protocols in place that make the information work for the team.
While there are literally an endless number of ways in which big data can optimize sales, here are a few of the most important:
Respond to Customer Trends in Real Time
Companies that are able to leverage customer information effectively can create customer data models that will identify customer segments that are likely to spend more or spend less, those who are more likely to leave than others, and those who may develop specific needs in the future. This information can help salespeople tailor their communications to specific customers and will help them allocate their resources on the customers who need the most attention.
Improve Sales Team Efficiency
How much of your sales team’s time is spent researching customers, businesses, and industry information? What if you could free up that time for revenue-generating activities? Structured data collection can significantly cut research time by delivering customer insights directly to salespeople. Those insights can also be combined with marketing automation tools which will generate emails and other communications on behalf of the salesperson when certain events, thresholds or flags trigger the system.
Identify and Improve Up-Sales and Cross-Sales
In the past, if you wanted your team to upsell, you typically provided them with a specific product to focus on, and awarded a prize to the rep who sold the most. That’s not a very targeted approach, nor does it provide real value for the customer. Big data can improve upselling and cross selling opportunities by tailoring products to a specific customer. The system can use the customer’s past buying history and unique data points to select products that are most likely to benefit them.
Improve Social Selling
Social media is rapidly becoming an effective channel for B2B sales. According to data provided by Sirius Decisions, as much as 67 percent of the B2B buying decision happens online. Business customers are starting to shop like consumers, turning to peers and colleagues for product recommendations and reviews. This means that by the time a potential customer connects with a salesperson, they’re more than halfway through their decision-making process. Social analytics allows reps to improve buyer personas through social insight, use customer feedback and online discussion to help them shape their sales pitches, and better plot the buyer’s journey.
Implementing big data into a sales team’s daily routine can often spell trouble. Nobody likes change, and your experienced reps who are very used to the “old way” of doing business may push back. It is important to build up a team that is willing and able to adapt quickly to new technology. If your enterprise software sales company is looking to build such a team, Strategic Search Solutions can help. As a niche firm, we work exclusively in the enterprise software space. We understand trends in the market and we have cultivated a strong network of sales talent that also has their fingers on the pulse of the industry. For more information about our Strategic Search Solutions and our process, please contact us today.