The world of sales can be harsh, even cutthroat at times. With so many companies vying for the same deals and clients, it can be hard not to get swept up in all the commotion. That’s why it’s more important than ever to make yourself stand out in this environment. Getting the attention or and securing the trust of another business is your entire job, but you can’t do that if no one even gives you a second look. Let’s examine four ways to set yourself apart in B2B sales so you can secure those contracts.
1. Be Authentic
Authenticity is a key ingredient in setting any business apart from its competitors. A flashy ad may not be what is needed and a hook to capture attention does not always work. In many cases people want to know the person on the screen whom is selling the message is human and approachable. When an audience give you their time be it fifteen or thirty seconds they have an interest in connecting with you. You can connect with your audience by speaking to them like person not a case or just another number. Telling the story and giving a reason what sets a business or entity apart is equally important. When one connects with the audience it now becomes your audience to lose. Remain consistent and authentic to set yourself and the business apart.
2. Emphasize Real B2B Sales Experience
A hefty resume is impressive in just about every venue, but at the end of the day it’s just a lot of words on paper. We’ve talked before about being THE choice in your market with a big part of that being to put yourself out there in a way that makes others take notice of you. For something like sales, a good way to do that is to turn your resume into real accomplishments. Don’t just be another corporate suit meeting with a business’ representative; sell yourself as much as you’re selling your products. Talk about the major sale you made with another company and don’t be afraid to get into some (reasonable) specifics. It makes all you’ve done feel a lot more tangible compared to simply saying you’re “experienced” in the field of sales.
3. Don’t Be A Yes Person
While personal information like your favorite sports team or what you like to eat aren’t totally relevant to the job at hand, having some kind of moral backbone certainly is. When you’re meeting with someone to make a sale, you’re representing your company. This includes your company’s values. Less scrupulous people might be tempted to become a yes-man for the client, echoing everything another company’s representative says and going along with them without argument. Not only will this make you seem untrustworthy, you’re essentially selling out your own people for the sake of the sale. Ironically, sometimes offering some pushback in the negotiations can make the other people want to do business with you even more. Seeming like an interesting person, even in subtler ways, can also be a benefit in making you feel more genuine and trustworthy.
4. Avoid the B2B Sales Platitudes
Despite how often people say it, telling someone that the thing that sets your company apart is your commitment to your clients isn’t going to win anyone over. In an ideal world, everyone a representative talks to will hold true to this sentiment. With that in mind, why should that be impressive at this point? Empty platitudes and stock answers like this do nothing but show a superficial side to you and, by extension, your company. Rather than offer up the same answers as everyone else, talk about what actually makes you different. Discuss your specialized processes or the relationships you’ve built with peers or any number of other accomplishments that are actually impressive instead of just giving them lip service like they’re used to.
5. Focus on the Big Picture
It’s important to get into the nitty gritty of your processes and what you offer, but it’s equally crucial to demonstrate how you and your business fit into the overall framework of your client’s own success. Paint them a picture of how going forward with you will be different from buying from a competitor, especially when it comes to overall quality and profits. Competitive analysis is a handy tool here, especially if you can highlight some deficiencies in strategies that don’t involve your business.
6. Sell To Help Don’t Sell To Sell
A client told me, “if you do the right thing, the money will come.” To this day, I live by that statement. It is true; it keeps you honest, humble and keeps your client loyal to you. When your client invites you into their world for partnership, you shouldn’t abuse their trust. Only propose what is good for them (clients), not what is good for you. Because if you continue to do the right thing, the money will come.
Standing out can be a challenge in the high-stakes, high-stress world of B2B sales. If you can just remember these four tips for setting yourself apart, though, you shouldn’t have any trouble appealing to clients and making that sale. That said, you’re just barely breaking the surface when it comes to marketing yourself and your business. For more tips and tricks plus professional consultation on how to be the best business you that you can be, contact Eric Elliot and the VIP Marketing team today.