Customers Changed – Sales didn’t

The old sales process model (a generic version) :
– Prospect Identification or lead
– Initial Contact
– Customer Qualification
– Needs identification
– Product evaluation
– Negotiation
– Closing

BUT:
– Lead flow dried out,
– The initial contact ends on somebodies voice mail or email spam filter
– We are happy for any sign of an interests rather than “qualify a prospect”
– Needs identification is done by the prospect using the internet
– Product or brand selection is done through trusted networks and not based on a sales person’s suggestion.
– Only the last two steps remain pretty much the same. But how do you get there?

IS THIS THE END OF SALES?

Certainly not – but sales need to change as customer behavior changed.
For get the blah blah blah about “better listening to your customers”. We all know we do that.
If you dive deep in how Zappos (online shoe dealer), Cisco (high end network equipment) or Virgin (travel) does it, you will notice that there is actually no real difference between B2B or B2C – and no real difference whether it is a $60 product, a $600 service or a $600,000 project.

So what is the difference between the companies who actually grew during the down economy and those who failed – even had to file chapter 11?

You may find some interesting points of view here:
http://www.socialmedia-academy.com/blog/index.php/us-program/leadership-class/intro-webinar-2010-01-20/


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