I recently held two separate conversations with business associates in very different technology channels. The topic? Selling in the digital environment. Both shared similar insights on what they see as the most effective ways for reaching, engaging, and capturing customers. No longer tethered to desks, the speed of delivering business information to make informed decisions has superseded in-person customer meetings. A study by Genysys shows that when interacting with a business for customer service and support, 78% of consumers use mobile devices. That number increases to 90% when working with millennials. Email and text have become commonplace while “old school” face-to-face interaction might be seen as inefficient.
With the internet in the palm of your hand, are salespeople becoming obsolete? And if they are still relevant, how do they adapt in an ever-changing digital economy where the nature of the customer relationship continues to evolve? Enter the importance of understanding and maximizing the “CX”, or the customer experience. Businesses often fail because they are not considering the customer’s journey. The best salespeople provide an experience that informs and inspires a desire to purchase.
In her recent blog post, Dr. Inna Baigozina-Goreli of Accenture’s Resource Industry Group writes that the customer-facing landscape is changing and that companies will need to transform sales and marketing strategies to keep up. In the chemical industry, several disruptive trends are spurring new ways to think approach the customer relationship, including changes in customer expectations as well as the rise of new sales and marketing platforms.
To thrive in the twenty-first century business world, salespeople must be able to build long-standing and trusted relationships. These networks of satisfied clients and colleagues who can vouch for the value of a product or solution are the foundation of any business. Since it doesn’t help make real connections, technology can only get us so far. Stuart Stanbra builds on this idea in The Startup, discussing four ways to improve sales by improving the customer experience: creating awareness; educating; establishing credibility; and setting realistic expectations. The first two are focused on the product, while the latter two methods speak to creating a sustainable business relationship.
Maximizing the customer experience involves speed and agility, responsiveness and integrity. A valuable, long-term customer relationship will always need the personal touch. What are the most important skills that you look for as a customer from your vendor? At Match Point Strategies, we understand how to apply digital tools while capturing our customer’s business confidence through tenacious, professional sales representation. Interested in finding out how?