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Using Video To Navigate The Consensus Sales Cycle
Jon S. Richards
The biggest shift over the last two decades in buyer behavior has not been technological or organizational, it’s been cultural. No longer is the power to make buying decisions left in the hands of one or two decision makers. Instead, the B2B buying process has become one of consensus between a half-dozen or more stakeholders across multiple departments within an organization.
The reasons for this shift are many, but the end result is that it requires an entirely different approach to the sales cycle to win new business. Instead of proving the value to just one or two departments, sales reps are often being asked to demonstrate how their products and services will add value to the whole company and their customers.
To navigate this new paradigm, sales team members need to take advantage of new tools and problem-solving techniques if they want to maintain a competitive edge. One of the biggest challenges right out of the gate is communication.
Connecting with all the various stakeholders needed for consensus, either as a group or individually, presents challenges. No one answers their phones anymore, everyone has a hundred urgent emails sitting in their inbox unread, and stalking a prospect via social media is just downright creepy in most cases.
Communicating with a client’s customers, either directly or indirectly, can be an even bigger challenge. Often what a client’s customers care about is different than what the client cares about. Navigating that divide is difficult under the best circumstances, and can quickly result in lost business in the worst case outcome.
What all this adds up to is that basic communication between buyers and sellers has become an unexpected roadblock in the age of consensus decision making.
So, what’s the solution?
Using Video To Break Through The Noise
There is never just one thing that sales reps can say or do to break through the barriers when communicating with prospects. It always takes a combination of skills and tools being strategically deployed to the right people at the right time.
With that said, one of the most underutilized tools in the sales arsenal is video. Many sales teams shy away from video, believing it to be too time-consuming to produce and deliver. This is unfortunate, because utilizing video is rarely about the quality of the production, but rather the opportunity for personalization that matters most.
Leveraging video allows sales teams to have a personal presence with prospects that may be scattered across multiple locations. Where on-premises selling may be costly and impractical, video allows teams to effectively communicate throughout the sales cycle.
Video can also be many different things, and the style and content can change depending on what the situation calls for. This means sales teams can use video for things like:
- Product demonstrations and tours
- Responding to questions
- Introducing other team members
- Live or recorded Q&A’s for multiple stakeholders
The right video deployed at the right time can be just the thing to break through the noise your prospects have learned to ignore when going through the evaluation and buying process. And while video alone isn’t a way to guarantee a sale, it is a way to stand out from the pack and deliver a message that will resonate when used correctly.
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