Sales 2.0 isn't a buzzword; it's become a professional discipline. It's not a passing fad but a massive shift in the global business culture. It's not about sales or marketing tools but a business transformation that delivers better results.
Today, Sales 2.0 plays a vital role in selling. And as the old ways of selling are fading away and salespeople and sales managers are educated about the increased risk of becoming victims of change, I want to reassure old-school salespeople that the core of selling will never change. That core is the ability to create, expand, and enhance relationships, face-to-face and online.
The good news: Sales 2.0 has not made B2B salespeople obsolete. In most cases, it has made them a lot more productive and effective.
What is Sales 2.0? It's the use of best-practice sales processes enabled by technology to improve speed, accountability, collaboration, and customer engagement. Sales 2.0 is a more efficient and effective way of selling and buying.
The economic pressures in our business environment demand that sales organizations become ruthlessly efficient. But Warren Buffett reminds us that efficiency is not enough: "We are tempted to see where the arrow of performance lands and then draw a bull's eye around it." We need greater effectiveness, which means we need to stop trying to improve processes that don't deliver value.
It means that we deliver greater value in the context of the sales rep's world. The equation is simple: deliver more value to the sales force so that it can deliver more value to the customer. Sales 2.0's mission is to create the right results in the most economical way.
As more ROI reports emerge, business leaders sit up and take notice. Last year, Brainshark reported that its $3,600 investment per sales rep in Sales 2.0 tools was instrumental in a 35 percent year-over-year increase in sales. Just last week, Ken Powell, VP of sales enablement at SunGard stated, “In 2013, our investment in Sales 2.0 solutions is over $4 million, and we project that this will translate into an additional $100 million in revenues.”
With the right set of Sales 2.0 tools, science can become part of the sales process, allowing companies to create a culture of measurement in which value takes center stage. Sales managers can enjoy productivity gains and increased sales while making fewer decisions based on hunches and more decisions based on science. Salespeople benefit from a level playing field, where their professional sales talent pays off in greater dividends.
In its latest Sales Performance Optimization survey, CSO Insights found that Sales 2.0 companies actually overachieve compared to less efficient organizations. In Sales 2.0 companies, a higher percentage of salespeople make quota, and more salespeople close the deals that they forecast. If you want to explore how your peers are leveraging Sales 2.0 tools, check out our new site, www.salesopshop.com, where more than 1,000 sales leaders and sales operations managers collaborate to win.