Winning bigger business deals is the most effective way to increase growth in B2B. By applying the principles we advocate, it is entirely possible to increase revenues by 100-500 percent or more over 12 months. We have seen both smaller and larger companies experience this.
Most successful B2B companies are working according to the 80/20 principle. Often 20-30 clients make up 80 percent or more of their sales. Even though they may have thousands of clients, there are really just a few who pull in the big revenue and generate profit. This represents a great opportunity to work smarter instead of harder.
– Many small business owners can increase the average value per client by 300-1000 percent.
– Decision makers at larger companies can often increase the size of their average client by 30-50 percent.
They can accomplish this by implementing some firm principles.
Consider how it might affect your company if you could make this change while maintaining or increasing the profitability of every client? How would it affect growth? How would it affect profitability? How would it affect the value of your company? How would it affect you personally?
How can you increase revenue?
What many people do not realize is that 100 percent of revenue comes from sales. There are three ways to increase sales:
- Attract more new clients.
- Increase annual income per client.
- Reduce the amount of clients who stop purchasing or decrease their order value.
In order to achieve this, there are both visible and hidden challenges and problems. The visible challenges involve strategy and implementation. The hidden ones are about the psychology of leaders and sales people.
Visible challenges and problems
Scratch the surface and you’ll find there are four visible challenges related to profitably winning bigger business.
- Too small or the wrong clients with too little long-term potential
- New clients who apply price pressure, negatively affecting profitability and/or cash flow
- No offer or an inability to act in a market that allows for increased annual revenue per client
- Failure to succeed at cross-selling and add-on sales.
- Lack of a fully considered sales process targeting the most important existing and potential clients
- Weak brand without an expert position in the industry
- Little or no work with cross-selling
- Unhappy clients
- Too little trust in the industry and among clients
- Poor assessment of the 1,000 key influencers and decision makers on the individual level
- Inability to connect what your company offers with the client’s key priorities in the coming year
Hidden challenges and problems
Over 90 percent of the brain’s capacity is subconscious. This is the part of the brain that makes your heart beat more than 100,000 times a day and takes care of many other functions in the body. In other words, no decisions are objective – not at the company doing the selling or the buying. We buy emotionally, and motivate rationally.
The psychology of the leader or sales person determines the likelihood of increasing order value
Is it realistic to make a 100,000 SEK business deal? What about a 1 million SEK deal? 10 million? 100 million? 1 billion? If you ask Ericsson’s best sales person or the salesperson at your local electronics store, the answers will be completely different.
We have discovered that the challenge is movement.
Challenges for making bigger business deals:
- Need to solve new important types of problems for your clients
- Change clients or the person you are selling to within the organization
- Reach more decision makers
- Be more of an adviser and expert in the sales process
- Represent a brand that invites trust (when it comes to both the sales and the company)
Here’s where the fears come in:
- Will anyone want to pay for this?
- Do you add enough value?
- Does the client have the means?
- Are competitors asking for a lot less money?
- You feel that you have to get this business, so consider lowering the order value and increasing the discount to win it
- … and many more fears
Fears often drastically impair results.
5 crucial changes required to win bigger business smarter
Now we’ve arrived at 5 concrete steps your company can take. This applies to the sales and marketing teams and assumes you deliver an awesome product or service and have pretty satisfied clients.
1. Start with those clients revenue should come from
- Have a clear plan for which clients revenue should come from.
- Make sure that your organization has a solid grasp of its target group down to the individual level of your top 1000, ie., the 1,000 most important decision makers and influencers among your clients.
- Make sure you have a consistent and common marketing and sales effort toward your top 1,000.
2. Position your company as the expert and thought leader in your industry
- Position yourselves as experts on the most important challenges facing your top 1,000 in the next 1-2 years.
- Build your brand in those channels where the top 1,000 are active. Do your research and document which channels are best.
- Own the position both offline and online. In many cases, you should own LinkedIn, and uphold a very high level when it comes lectures, etc.
3. Manage your subconscious fears through mentoring
- Everyone is afraid of great change, so in order to drive this kind of change project, support is necessary.
- Have few advisers, but they should be world-class. If you have too many, they will probably say different things and create confusion.
- Make sure to invest in the change so you have “skin in the game” and actually do what it takes when things get difficult.
4. Have a common plan for sales and marketing
- Start with your top 1,000 and consider the problems, challenges and most important results they want to achieve.
- Have a common message platform – be educational and add the most value.
- Dare to be premium and innovative in all channels.
5. Coach and train your sales staff so that they are able to take on bigger business
- People who work in sales should be trusted advisers – management consultants with expertise in how to solve the most important challenges for your top 1,000. Educate and/or coach them, or replace them if necessary.
- Challenge them so that you reach more influencers and decision makers so that your business is not stalled.
- Make sure everyone involved understands the plans for your clients, which are the foundation for the strategy and implementation.
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