By Dave Irwin, Founder & CEO of Polaris I/O
Given the pace of change during the pandemic — an accelerated digital economy, in addition to the current economic climate, supply chain issues, ESG initiatives, and world events — there are constantly new and shifting needs for any B2B company. Different groups of people across departments, regions, divisions, and elevation levels are having to adapt daily to new challenges. Fixed demand for products and services is being overrun with new demand for solutions to emerging problems. This shift in demand is both a threat and an opportunity for suppliers needing to protect, retain, and grow these valuable account relationships. And everyone knows it.
B2B Buyers Want Relevant Information Fast
When you combine constantly changing needs with a fundamental desire of B2B buyers to make most buying decisions without the involvement of salespeople, the threat to the traditional sales-and-marketing model becomes even more pronounced. According to a Harvard Business Review article, “Traditional B2B Sales and Marketing are Becoming Obsolete,” from last year, “Helping today’s B2B buyers buy isn’t a sales challenge, nearly so much as an information challenge (or, alternatively, an information opportunity). The companies that best provide customers the information they most urgently seek, specifically through the channels they most clearly prefer, are in a far better position to drive commercial success in today’s rapidly evolving digital commercial landscape.”
From a traditional go-to market perspective, the historical focus of sales and marketing, the information a buyer is seeking has been about your product and services. But that has changed. What about unknown demand and the unmet needs of today’s business executives who are bombarded with new challenges every day? This is a fundamentally different dynamic to understand, and critical for effective cross-selling in key accounts. In a buyer journey of unknown demand, it isn’t the channel you deliver the information to that is the issue, but rather the very information itself you are delivering.
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