CEB Sales Leadership Council®
Getting in Early:
Shaping Demand Through
Pre-Funnel Engagement
July 2014
 2
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN
Finding A Ready Customer
Customer Purc...
 3
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC7517113SYN
57% Complete
Customer Due
Diligence Be...
 4
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN
Make Decision
A Shift in Buying: Releg...
 5
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC7517113SYN
Make DecisionLearn Define Needs Assess...
 6
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN
What this entails: Surfacing in-depth ...
 7
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN Source:	Sales Leadership Council resea...
 8
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN
Lead with Insight
Improvement in Proba...
 9
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN
Gain Presence and Influence
Improvemen...
10
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board
Company. All Rights Reserved.
SEC4966813SYN
Social media is decidedly
part of the ...
 11
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN
Shaping Demand
Improvement in Probabi...
 12
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN
Hi-pers teach where
customers learn, ...
 13
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN
Shape Demand: teach where the custome...
 14
© 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company.
All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN
The wealth of information
available t...
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APAC CEB & LinkedIn Webcast - Getting in early

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APAC CEB & LinkedIn Webcast - Getting in early

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APAC CEB & LinkedIn Webcast - Getting in early

  1. 1. CEB Sales Leadership Council® Getting in Early: Shaping Demand Through Pre-Funnel Engagement July 2014
  2. 2.  2 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN Finding A Ready Customer Customer Purchase Experience Illustrative Sales organizations ideally seek to engage customers with clear needs, who are ready to buy. ■■ The primary commercial objective has been to engage an opportunity at the earliest moment business needs require action. Predominantly Marketing Predominantly Sales ■■ Listening for new ideas ■■ Evaluating current approaches ■■ Deciding to take action ■■ Clarifying needs ■■ Searching for solution ■■ Evaluating vendor capability ■■ Creating vendor short-list ■■ Vendor selection ■■ Settling pricing and terms IV. Make Decision I. Learn II. Define Needs III. Assess Options Sales targets and pursues customers with clear needs who are motivated to buy. Source: Sales Leadership Council research.
  3. 3.  3 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC7517113SYN 57% Complete Customer Due Diligence Begins Customer’s First Contact with Supplier Customer Purchase Decision Customers increasingly turn to third-party consultants 3 Customization requests increase 1 Customer access decreases 2 Price is all that’s left to compete on 4 Source: CEB analysis. Source: CEB analysis. Through this period customer needs have been well-scoped, priorities set, requirements largely defined, solutions compared, and price is often being initially benchmarked. THE EMERGENCE OF THE INFORMED CUSTOMER Customer Purchase Decision Timeline Key Implications of Today’s Sale Customers are engaging suppliers relatively late in the purchase process. ■■ Customers are now better informed than ever before and complete much of the purchase due diligence on their own—leaving only one thing to discuss with suppliers: price. n = 1,460.
  4. 4.  4 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN Make Decision A Shift in Buying: Relegated to Fulfillment Customer Progress in Today’s Average B2B Purchase Experience Information proliferation has enabled the customer to more thoroughly assess needs and options without supplier support. ■■ This information proliferation has resulted in customers gaining price leverage as they are simply looking for a supplier to fill their needs in a relatively low-cost way. ■■ Most consumers purchase automobiles in a similar fashion today. Few go to a dealership without having done research, determined options, and knowing the price they are willing to pay. ■■ This trend underscores how customers will engage (and always have engaged) suppliers as late as possible. ■■ This alarming trend raises a clear question—how does Sales get in early with a more informed customer? The average B2B purchase decision is 57% complete, and more than 10 information sources have been consulted, by the time a supplier is engaged. Key Question: How does Sales get involved with customers here? Predominantly Marketing Predominantly Sales Source: 2011 MLC Customer Purchase Research Survey; SalesLeadership Council research. n = 1,460 customers. Define Needs Assess OptionsLearn
  5. 5.  5 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC7517113SYN Make DecisionLearn Define Needs Assess Options Source: CEB analysis. Challenger reps leverage insight to teach customers into the funnel. Shape Demand Reshape Demand 1 2 Teaching SHAPING, NOT REACTING Customer Purchase Experience Illustrative Challengers use insight to effectively shape— or reshape—customer demand. ■■ Challenger reps use commercial teaching to disrupt the customer’s perspective—whether it’s how they are currently managing their business or how they are considering a specific purchase.
  6. 6.  6 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN What this entails: Surfacing in-depth information about opportunities from outside experts, subject matter experts, operations teams, other sales people, partners, even customer employees, etc. What this is not: Determining basic information about opportunities from sources such as public filings, company overviews, traditional opportunity fit scores, or brief conversations with peers. Example: Gen-i built formal communication channels between operations and sales teams to coordinate information sharing on growth opportunities within accounts. Representative Quote: “I try to triangulate my info sources for any prospect. The info I need is out there, you just have to be creative to get it.” Star Performer, Business Services Gather Deep Intelligence Improvement in Probability of Being a High Performer Hi-pers conduct much deeper due diligence on opportunities using a variety of non-traditional information sources. ■■ Hi-pers heavily relied on people close to the customer organization, including partners, SMEs, consultants, customer employees, and social media sources for this deep intelligence. ■■ It was evident that many core performers quickly assessed opportunities, but did not probe or search for further information. Their searches were often limited to simple internet research. ■■ Hi-pers aim to know things about the customer that the customer doesn’t know about themselves. 12.81% 11.57% 10.00% 6.20% ChangeinProbabilityGoing from25thPercentileto75th PercentilePerformer Conducts Non- Traditional Customer Due Diligence ■■ Brainstorm with others to think of ways to approach customers ■■ Network with internal subject matter experts to learn about different customers ■■ Understand the concerns of the buying group Source: Sales Executive Council Pre-Sales Diagnostic; Sales Leadership Council research. n = 1,078.
  7. 7.  7 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN Source: Sales Leadership Council research. Own Lead generation Improvement in Probability of Being a High Performer Hi-pers build their own pipeline—self-generating leads and not overly relying on Marketing for lead generation. ■■ Interviews showed considerable differences between core and high- performers within the same companies regarding lead generation. ■■ High performers devote significant attention to independently developing their business pipeline. 12.81% 11.57% 10.00% 6.20% ChangeinProbabilityGoing from25thPercentileto75th PercentilePerformer Personally Owns Lead Generation Conducts Non- Traditional Customer Due Diligence What this entails: Lead generation and pipeline cultivation is viewed as an important individual responsibility. What this is not: Depending on traditional marketing efforts and the company for leads. Example: Eloqua encourages salespeople to maintain a strong social and event networking presence, positioning salespeople as key industry influencers. Representative Quote: “Most of my peers wait for leads—they see lead generation as Marketing’s job. Then they wonder why they’ve got no one to sell to.” Star Performer, Business Services ■■ I devote considerable personal time to finding and nurturing leads ■■ Working with marketing falls within my core responsibilities ■■ I always customize collateral to ensure relevance ■■ Brainstorm with others to think of ways to approach customers ■■ Network with internal subject matter experts to learn about different customers ■■ Understand the concerns of the buying group THE POWER TO SUCCEED. ® n = 1,078.
  8. 8.  8 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN Lead with Insight Improvement in Probability of Being a High Performer 12.81% 11.57% 10.00% 6.20% ChangeinProbabilityGoing from25thPercentileto75th PercentilePerformer Conducts Non- Traditional Customer Due Diligence Leads with InsightPersonally Owns Lead Generation Hi-pers willingly engage in pushing the customer’s thinking and highlighting flawed assumptions. ■■ Leading with insight, strongly echoes the Challenger Rep’s traits. What this entails: Taking a teaching posture with the customer and willingly challenging customer thinking. What this is not: Leading with features, benefits, and overtly commercial messages. Example: Cargill Pro Pricing arms salespeople with high-impact commercial messages which reframe how customers think about their business, and highlight flawed assumptions customers frequently make. Representative Quote: “You’ve got to position yourself in the knowledge fabric, where customers and their consultants learn. You’ve got to help the customer think differently to be part of that game.” Star Performer, Healthcare ■■ Teaches the customer insights ■■ Does not shy away from highlighting flawed assumptions ■■ Does not shy away from obstacles in the way of valuable business ■■ I devote considerable personal time to finding and nurturing leads ■■ Working with marketing falls within my core responsibilities ■■ I always customize collateral to ensure relevance ■■ Brainstorm with others to think of ways to approach customers ■■ Network with internal subject matter experts to learn about different customers ■■ Understand the concerns of the buying group Source: Sales Leadership Council research. n = 1,078.
  9. 9.  9 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN Gain Presence and Influence Improvement in Probability of Being a High Performer ChangeinProbabilityGoing from25thPercentileto75th PercentilePerformer Uses Social Media as Critical Channel 12.81% 11.57% 10.00% 6.20% What this entails: Positioning oneself as a key influencer within social networks to best leverage their scope and scale to cultivate a business network. What this is not: Using social media as a “spamming” or purely commercial channel. Questions About Social Media ■■ Is social media really where customers are going for information? ■■ Is there evidence that real companies are successfully using social media for B2B sales? ■■ Is this relevant to companies outside tech? What about regulated industries? ■■ Does social media help with global or key accounts? Conducts Non- Traditional Customer Due Diligence Leads with InsightPersonally Owns Lead Generation Hi-pers leverage social media to gain access to business opportunities. ■■ Interviews highlighted that high-performers deliberately use social media to position themselves where customers learn. ■■ Social media channels such as Twitter and LinkedIn present tremendous scale and reach benefits over traditional networking channels. ■■ Connect with potential customers via social media ■■ Use social networks such as LinkedIn or Twitter to share points of view and news about your company and products ■■ Use social media for lead generation purposes ■■ Teaches the customer insights ■■ Does not shy away from highlighting flawed assumptions ■■ Does not shy away from obstacles in the way of valuable business ■■ I devote considerable personal time to finding and nurturing leads ■■ Working with marketing falls within my core responsibilities ■■ I always customize collateral to ensure relevance ■■ Brainstorm with others to think of ways to approach customers ■■ Network with internal subject matter experts to learn about different customers ■■ Understand the concerns of the buying group Source: Sales Leadership Council research. n = 1,078.
  10. 10. 10 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN Social media is decidedly part of the B2B buying and selling experience. THE ELEPHANT(S) IN THE ROOM 1. Is social media really where customers are going for information? 2. Is there evidence that real companies are successfully using social media for B2B sales? ■ 78% started with informal info gathering online ■ 59% engaged with peers who addressed the challenge ■ 48% followed online industry conversations on topic ■ 41% followed online discussions to learn more about topic ■ 37% posted questions on social networking sites looking for suggestions/feedback IBM arms salespeople with “social soundbites” which help sales reps engage social networks, ultimately generating considerable sales. Morgan Stanley allows 600+ advisors to use LinkedIn and Twitter, generating considerable leads and reinvigorating past client relationships. n = 100+ B2B buyers across industry. Source: Genius.com. Source: IBM; Chief Marketer; Morgan Stanley; Reuters. 3. Is this relevant to companies outside tech? What about regulated industries? 4. Does social media help with global or key accounts? LinkedIn Contacts Across Industry Construction HighTech Medical Arts Finance Corporate Educational Manufacturing Consumer Recreational 13.2 9.5 8.1 5.4 “LinkedIn and Twitter give me access to the whole ecosystem around that account— consultants, other providers, my key contacts…. Based on [my contact’s] connections, it’s easy to see if competition is lurking.” Star Account Manager, Telecommunications APAC Membership by Industry Sector Source: LinkedIn.com Other Recent Headlines Timken Adds Automotive and Heavy- Truck Focus to Social Media Conversation Dun & Bradstreet Uses B2B Social Media to Bring Data to Life Source: The Timken Company; Dun & Bradstreet, SocialMediaB2B.com. 4.5 4.3 4.2 3.4 3.3 2.3
  11. 11.  11 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN Shaping Demand Improvement in Probability of Being a High Performer ChangeinProbabilityGoing from25thPercentileto75th PercentilePerformer Uses Social Media as Critical Channel 12.81% 11.57% 10.00% 6.20% Conducts Non- Traditional Customer Due Diligence Leads with InsightPersonally Owns Lead Generation Hi-pers embrace four critical behaviors in their pre-funnel selling activity set. ■■ Connect with potential customers via social media ■■ Use social networks such as LinkedIn or Twitter to share points of view and news about your company and products ■■ Use social media for lead generation purposes ■■ Teaches the customer insights ■■ Does not shy away from highlighting flawed assumptions ■■ Does not shy away from obstacles in the way of valuable business ■■ I devote considerable personal time to finding and nurturing leads ■■ Working with marketing falls within my core responsibilities ■■ I always customize collateral to ensure relevance ■■ Brainstorm with others to think of ways to approach customers ■■ Network with internal subject matter experts to learn about different customers ■■ Understand the concerns of the buying group Source: Sales Leadership Council research. n = 1,078.
  12. 12.  12 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN Hi-pers teach where customers learn, shaping customer demand in the pre-funnel stage. ■■ Core performers largely wait for business opportunities to present themselves. They depend on Marketing to deliver leads, and qualify opportunities based on clarity of customer needs. ■■ High performers embody a “micro-marketing” mindset across their territory, teaching customers into their funnel. Shaping, not Reacting Variables Most Indicative of Performance Comparison of Core and High Performers Core Performer n = 766 of 1,078. ■■ Assesses opportunities based on clarity of customer needs ■■ Believes lead generation is the company’s responsibility ■■ Undiscerningly uses social media (“spams” their network) High Performer n = 312 of 1,078. ■■ Conducts non-traditional due diligence ■■ Personally owns lead generation ■■ Leads with insight ■■ Uses social media as a critical channel Distinctive Core Performer Behaviors Distinctive High Performer Behaviors Fills orders by reacting to existing demand and settled customer needs Teaches where customers learn. Shapes demand by teaching customers into the funnel. Source: Sales Leadership Council research.
  13. 13.  13 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN Shape Demand: teach where the customer learns Customer Purchase Experience Sales must teach where customers learn, shaping demand to win profitable business. Shaping Demand Today’s Star Performer Reacting to Demand Incorrect Question How can we get our salespeople to sell where needs are initially defined? Correct Question How can we get our salespeople to teach where customers learn? Source: Sales Leadership Council research. Make DecisionDefine Needs Assess OptionsLearn
  14. 14.  14 © 2014 The Corporate Executive Board Company. All Rights Reserved. SEC4966813SYN The wealth of information available to customers is crowding out traditional marketing. ■■ Marketing has traditionally driven awareness and thought leadership in the “learn” phase. ■■ However, the wealth of information available to customers has crowded out traditional marketing messages. ■■ Customers have applied filters to the information they consume, granting access to few sources. ■■ Sales can earn the required access to customers in this state, helping them think differently about their business in ways traditional marketing collateral cannot. ■■ Marketing must provide worthy contributors that enable sales in gaining access to customers in the learning stage. Revising the Commercial Front Critical Shifts in Sales and Marketing Relative to the Customer Purchase Experience Assess Options Make DecisionLearn Define Needs Marketing ■■ Enable sales reps with short messages to engage customers while learning. ■■ Support sales reps’ personal brand building. ■■ Identify unique differentiators. ■■ Develop and package commercial insights which highlight unique differentiators. ■■ Enable further exploration of needs through interactive, yet scalable, messages and content. Sales ■■ Train sales reps to be involved in channels where customers learn (e.g., social media). ■■ Teach reps to personalize marketing messages. ■■ Adapt marketing insights for direct interaction with customers. ■■ Train sales reps to deliver commercial insights in compelling ways. ■■ Teach reps to target and identify the right stakeholders to carry insight into customer business. Source: Sales Leadership Council research.
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