HomeBlogCRM7 fatal B2B sales mistakes you must avoid

7 fatal B2B sales mistakes you must avoid

Selling is tough. And there are various hidden traps and mistakes even the most seasoned sales reps continually repeat. It is crucial to address those and implement a sales strategy that will effectively avoid those B2B sales mistakes that can cost you revenue and a hard-earned reputation.

B2B Sales Mistake #1: Focusing on selling and neglecting relationship building

B2B sales are all about relationship building. Far too many salespeople focus on hard-selling without realizing that recurring and happy customers are something that they should focus on.

Hard-selling stems from a lack of preparation and willingness to do proper research. Instead of looking at B2B sales as quick and easy, approach it as a drawn-out process to warm up the leads. One way to do that is by using a sales cadence. When you nurture relationships and various touchpoints, you’re more likely to get a “yes”. But it’s easier said than done. 

Tips for building trust with potential prospects:

  • Reach the right people: Always focus on your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) and find a market segment that aligns with your product. The more relevant your approach, the better the results.
  • Invest time into detailed research: Research is essential in every step of sales cadence. Before reaching out to prospects or leads, make sure you have done proper research into their pain points, goals, and preferences.
  • Ask big questions: Many salespeople are afraid of asking big questions, thinking they might drive away leads. On the contrary, you can create a stronger impression by balancing boldness with sincerity. Ask questions about what the lead is currently struggling with, what kind of solutions they’re looking for, do they have a budget, and how many people are involved in the decision-making process.

B2B Sales Mistake #2: Reaching the wrong set of people

The success of a B2B sales strategy largely depends on the people you reach. Most salespeople either go for Enterprises when they should have focused on SMBs to refine their product, or they go for lower hanging fruits when they should have targeted the decision-makers. Reps are also guilty of hard-selling to people who are not actively looking to buy their solution at that moment.

Finding the right set of people for your particular product again comes down to research and awareness of the industry. During the initial research, it is essential to find the correct contact information of key decision-makers. But it is also crucial to make sure your information is accurate. Not everything you find online is up-to-date or authentic, and that is why you should verify email addresses before reaching out to people. Once you get the contact information of the right people, it is time to personalize the conversation. 

For B2B sales, gatekeepers are the first significant roadblocks in reaching executives and decision-makers. You have to make sure your cold pitch is loaded with value, jumps quickly to the point, and offers actionable CTAs and compelling email endings.

B2B Sales Mistake #3: Rushing your prospects

B2B sales demand way more effort since they take time to build trust and relationships with potential prospects. Many sales reps tend to rush prospects to close a deal, resulting in quite the opposite – moving away from a deal. 

You need to give time for people to invest in your product or service. For that, respectful persistence works the best. Write great follow-up emails but do not send them thrice a week. Instead, try to find why the prospect hesitates to commit, and if they are checking competitors, what are the areas that can put you ahead. Once you have the answers, provide more value with each follow-up email to convince them. This can be a new market report, a demo that showcases a real-life use case, or simply a free solution. This is an excellent example of what follow-up emails should look like:

By taking the time to nurture each prospect, you create a strong impression. Even if they are not looking to buy your product right now, you will be at the top of their mind when they look to buy later.

B2B Sales Mistake #4: Highlighting only the features of your product

No matter how nicely the new lines of codes work or how fancy the UI paint looks, it is not essential to the customers if it is not visible in results. Businesses nowadays do not care much about the features of the products but put more focus on how a specific product can solve their key problems and challenges. 

That is why it is important to shift our perspective to them. Go the extra mile, and research your prospect’s key challenges, their competitors, and the industry overall. 

For instance, if you write a professional cold email, you need to lead with the outcomes rather than the features. Find a connection between your business/product and their problem and how they can secure a competitive advantage in the industry with your help. 

The best way to go about it is by citing testimonials from real clients and numbers that reiterate your claims. User-generated content is one of the better ways to build trust and authority. If you can craft emails that avoid the feature-benefit loop, do not overuse power words, and show real-life differences, you will get more replies. This will significantly improve your bounce rate and set your sales strategy up for success.

B2B Sales Mistake #5: Fearing the premium price point

Regardless of a flawless sales approach, price is the ultimate factor to seal the deal. Salespeople know it, and they tend to play too nicely along the price line. This hurts their success metrics. 

Founders and decision-makers often undercharge their products, thinking this will create a better impact. However, business customers are quick to smell a lack of confidence or cheapness. This comes in handy during negotiations, and you might end up charging even less than your original quote. 

Always price your product in a way that reflects the hard work, investment, and production cost, and be confident of defending it. It shows you value your work and you trust your product. If you can convince B2B customers about the results, they will accept the price. 

Another fatal mistake that derails B2B sales is the lack of price options. Businesses look for flexible opportunities, and a three-tier price structure gives them more data to make an informed decision. If you are worried about pricing your product too high, a basic plan can create a low barrier of entry, whereas a premium plan can show the actual value.

B2B Sales Mistake #6: Relying on one communication channel

Since we live in the information age, it is important not to limit your communication to only one channel. As everyday consumers, business people use multiple devices, platforms, and channels throughout the day to share, interact, and inquire about new things.

That is why you cannot limit your sales strategy to a single channel anymore. You have to synchronize email, phone, social media, video conferences, and personal meetings for the best results.

B2B Sales Mistakes
Source: McKinsey

To give your potential customers an all-around omnichannel experience, start by mapping the customer journey. Find where and how they like to engage with your product or sales representative, what they’re saying about your product, and collect all the data across the platform. Now bring sales, marketing, and customer service departments together to find the right tech stack to support the strategy and roll it out. Take constant feedback and improve your omnichannel strategy as you go.

B2B Sales Mistake #7: Not measuring your sales processes

Staying organized and having a clear idea of the goals is essential for salespeople. It is hard to improve and adjust without measuring your sales processes. When you have a CRM system in place, you will be able to track and measure the crucial data. That way, you can figure out what works and what does not, giving you a better understanding of the market and the customers. 

However, tracking and measuring your data can be a double-edged sword since many SaaS businesses tend to experience data overload, e.g. measuring and tracking too many variables. It is important to determine what data plays a crucial role in your sales process and measure it effectively. This again comes down to knowing what truly matters to you. Identify the reachable goals, the process, the smaller steps, and the timelines. Measure your performance against the metrics to see how you are doing and what could be improved. 

B2B sales do not follow a fixed strategy. That is why it is important to gather data and keep improving.

Conclusion

It’s easy to slide into a comfortable cycle when it comes to selling your product or service to another business. But more often than not, complacency leads to underwhelming sales. If you are planning to ramp up your business today, you must avoid making these fatal mistakes and stay flexible to pivot to new strategies.

With a CRM, you can avoid these B2B mistakes by automating mundane tasks while hitting all your sales targets.

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