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2017 Sales Predictions from Industry Experts

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In the rapidly changing playing field of business, sales organizations need to update themselves on the latest strategies, tools, and techniques to pull ahead of the competition. Be complacent and you’ll find yourself playing catch up with your competitors.

To be proactive, the key is to stay in sync with innovative sales techniques, tailor them to your teams, and roll them out quickly.

As we start the new year, Tenfold brings you this roundup filled with hard-hitting insights and ideas as to what the sales landscape will look like this 2017.

Published in: Sales
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2017 Sales Predictions from Industry Experts

  1. 1. In the rapidly changing playing field of business, sales organizations need to update themselves on the latest strategies, tools, and techniques to pull ahead of the competition. 
 
 Be complacent and you’ll find yourself playing catch up with your competitors. To be proactive, the key is to stay in sync with innovative sales techniques, tailor them to your teams, and roll them out quickly.
  2. 2. WHAT’S YOUR TOP SALES PREDICTION FOR 2017? As we open the year, Tenfold brings you this roundup filled with hard-hitting insights and ideas as to what the sales landscape will look like this 2017. We asked sales and business leaders:
  3. 3. ➔ The concept of Sales Manager Enablement will continue to blossom, with a focus on hiring, training, coaching and developing the competencies, activities, methodologies and practices that help frontline sales managers succeed. We’ll continue to see growth with technology-enabled virtual coaching and other sales management enablement tools that support managers beyond just the coaching part of their role. ➔ Sales Development will continue to grow and evolve into a function staffed by experienced, highly skilled and trained, top-performing reps who can elevate the profession and deliver the quality Top of the Funnel results that our sales forces so desperately need. ➔ Sales Enablement will continue to evolve as a profession with a focus on merging talent development, technology, process, messaging and methodology to better train and Read more
  4. 4. “The profession of sales is being elevated and coming into its own. Each company depends upon increasing clientele. Therefore, sales enablement, the new buzz word, will be examined from every aspect of every department. The end result will be a comprehensive plan between departments for open communication to truly enable sales.” Read more
  5. 5. Venture-backed companies are now obsessing over account- based this and account-based that. Why is this happening? Well, they’ve discovered it’s not enough to just acquire new customers and ensure their success with nominal levels of income. The customer retention problem will ultimately blow up your business model. You need “expansion revenue,” as venture capitalist David Skok call it. You need to go upstream and then land and expand. You need messages that are deeply relevant to the decision makers and influencers with the large accounts you are targeting – and you need to develop these messages in a smart, systematic way. You’re challenged to ensure marketing and selling teams are unified in their efforts to penetrate these accounts – and grow them to new levels. Read more
  6. 6. Microsoft will move quickly to integrate LinkedIn into its CRM (Dynamics) and business productivity apps (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook,…). The result will be accelerated adoption of Social Selling practices including increased social content sharing by salespeople. This will lead to further blurring of the lines between Marketing and Sales as they work more closely on inbound marketing activities for lead generation.” Read more
  7. 7. One prediction for 2017, smart companies will continue to revisit, refocus, and rescript their sales message.The purpose is to always put more focus on the prospect’s needs. Read more
  8. 8. “Google gets into the sales space with the acquisition of a CRM company. Microsoft, Salesforce, Google, Oracle, SAP, and PE Firms start to roll up sales and marketing companies aggressively.” Read more
  9. 9. My sense is top performers will continue to take advantage of social selling platforms by inspiring their ideal customers/ clients through insightful educational content. There will be a continued focus on building sustainable relationships using a plethora of technology platforms, smart devices through multiple methods of communication such as text, email, voice mail and phone Read more
  10. 10. “More and more of the actual “sale” will occur before the prospect ever talks to a salesperson–meaning that companies need to see the marketing side of their business as “sales” and also would be well served to, in many cases, at least partially merge the two departments in an effort to eliminate silos and create greater results.” Read more
  11. 11. I predict that more emphasis will be placed on sales leadership. For too many years the pressure has been put on the salespeople when sales numbers are not being hit. Company leaders are starting to understand that a sales team is only as good as its leader and those sales managers are only as good as the sales leaders that support them. The trend will be toward providing professional development in the form of training, coaching, and peer mentoring, to sales management Read more
  12. 12. In 2017 companies will recognize that everyone has a role to play in ensuring customer success, revenue, and the health of the organization and will start creating Customer Success Teams organized by territory. These new teams will be organized around creating a successful customer experience. Smart companies will start to ask, “which job functions in my company are integral to the customer having a positive experience with us?” Read more
  13. 13. B2B selling becomes even more data-driven. One of the most striking trends over the past few years has been the growing application of sales analytics, and I don’t think that 2017 will be any exception. In fact, I believe the trend will accelerate. Don’t get me wrong – complex sales will always benefit from a human touch. Sales people with emotional intelligence will always outperform their less gifted colleagues. Read more
  14. 14. “My top sales prediction for 2017 is that salespeople will be challenged more than ever with being able to differentiate their product, company and themselves. To effectively differentiate with buyers, salespeople need a documented sales differentiation strategy that helps them win more deals at the prices their company wants. Sales managers yelling for them to sell the value will not get it done.” Read more
  15. 15. With younger sales teams, better levels of technology, cost considerations, and increasing “adult learning” awareness and knowledge, these factors will merge to create online, mobile and interactive sales and sales management training offerings that will improve the level of professionalism to the next level. Much like the increasing power of CRM, these new tools will provide greater levels of individualized training, when you need it, where you need, and how you like to learn. A few sites like ChannelEQ.co and SalesGravy.com are just a few of the potential winners.” Read more
  16. 16. I believe that most of us recognize the onward, relentless march of commoditization, which will accelerate in 2017. Slowly but surely, more and more products, solutions and services are being commoditized. My definition of a commodity? If it can be purchased online with a credit card, it is a commodity. One of the few restrictors is a credit limit. There is a huge post-commoditization graveyard somewhere full of petrol pump attendants, insurance agents, mobile phone salespeople, newspaper sellers, and a whole host of other ex- salespeople made redundant by the internet – and it is filling up fast. Careers are dying to get in there! Change is inevitable. It is the one constant we can rely on – it cannot be refused or resisted, so we have to accept it and adapt and thrive. The sales space isn’t dying, it is just re- shaping itself and we just have to fully embrace it and keep the shutters of our minds in the “up” position. Read more
  17. 17. I predict that 2017 will see a renewed focus on the importance of the human element in sales; on the art of selling. Over the past several years we’ve witnessed an influx of sales enablement technologies and data-driven processes and analytics. Many supposed thought leaders have rushed to proclaim this a “golden age” of sales in which the “science of selling” has permanently killed off the “art of selling.” Read more
  18. 18. “In 2017 we’ll see every B2B employee become a sales person. We all pay lip-service to the idea that every employee should be the face of our product. That’s become more urgent over time as so much of a customer’s lifetime value is determined by interactions before and after engagement with a traditional sales person. That includes exchanges with SDRs, support, account management, finance, and other business units. What’s changed is the rise of automation to help these employees act like sales people. That can be through customer experience platforms that help support a customer journey. And it can be through sales enablement platforms that can distribute training, sales guidance, and marketing content to employees based on the prospect’s context. The result is employees who are equipped to have intelligent conversations with prospects or to direct them to resources Read more
  19. 19. Thank you! 
 
 Want to know how Salesforce is changing in 2017? FREE EBOOK: 
 
 How Salesforce is Changing in 2017 Get it here.
  20. 20. Tenfold helps companies capture, unify and leverage interaction data to increase rep efficiency, improve the quality of prospect and customer communications and enable companies to measure, analyze and improve every aspect of their customer journey. REGISTER FOR A FREE LIVE DEMO

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