How to increase B2B sales performance in 2022
Last January we started the year knowing 2021 was going to be a recovery year as the world continued to grapple with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Little did we know that these effects would be prolonged to the extent that we are starting 2022 in what feels like another recovery year.
From disrupted global supply chains and the blockage of the Suez Canal, to the rise in inflation and ‘the great resignation’, 2021 certainly had its fair share of factors that impacted B2B sales performance. Manufacturers continue to struggle to procure components and parts, let alone ship their goods into the UK market for resale. From Automotive and Agriculture to Telecoms and Electronics, many industries have struggled to hit their end of year sales targets. As we begin 2022, what does sales performance look like for these brands and how can companies engage and motivate sales staff whilst overcoming their supply chain issues?
Whether you sell directly or indirectly, via an employed sales team or channel partners, communication will play its biggest part yet in brand engagement. Direct or non-direct employees who haven’t been part of ‘the great resignation’ will be loyal to their roles and employers. In return they will expect clear, frequent, and honest communications disseminated from companies to support their sales process. Be an authentic brand who can talk openly about any stocking issues, be transparent on pricing and set realistic KPIs and sales targets. Don’t shy away from the manufacturing or supply chain issues you may have, allow your sales team to understand and help them with the customer narrative so as not to damage your brand’s reputation.
B2B Communication Tools
Be it a sales engagement platform, an employee engagement app, a recognition programme or reward redemption website, make sure employees and partners have easy access to tools through which to receive your communications. Leverage your field teams and regional managers to cascade information quickly and accurately. When people feel informed, they forge a loyalty and commitment to that brand. In times of crisis focus on engaging your audiences, use the tools available to get your brand message across to multiple audiences, from retailers, distributors, resellers, and call centres, in an effective way.
Don’t discount offline communications too. In the past 2 years it may feel like the whole world has turned to digital however there are many large global organisations who still use traditional methods of communication such as printed comms, presentations and corporate events to effectively engage.
Customer Facing Messaging
Once you’ve communicated to your direct and non-direct sales teams, give some thought to the messaging you want them to convey to their customers about your brand. Consider equipping them with sales guides, pre-agreed narratives, and product positioning to protect your brand values and market share. Make it easy for your sales teams to speak to their customers about you, help them to feel passionate about your existing products and new. Be confident that you’ve equipped your sales teams with everything they need to do their job. After all it’s likely 2022 will be another difficult year, communicate in the best way possible to help them increase their B2B sales performance.