In preparing for an upcoming blog series, I’m reading a book recommended by a client, entitled The Challenger Sale (the authors are Matthew Dixson and Brent Adamson). It seems like most B2B businesses desire to obtain new clients/customers, but few are able to execute their plan. Here are just a few tidbits from the book:
- A business services sales director told the author that of their 100 sales reps, two are responsible for 80 percent of the company’s revenues.
- In the authors’ study of more than 6,000 sales reps, they labeled the most successful reps as “The Challenger” and determined that these individuals possess three strong traits: teaching, tailoring and taking control.
- In a survey of more than 5,000 B2B customers, the answer (53 percent of the time) when asked, “Why do you select a particular supplier?” was “The sales experience.” The second most common answer (19 percent of the time) was “The company and brand impact.”
- Customer loyalty is won out in the field.
Here’s what the clients/customers say about The Challenger reps:
- They offer unique and valuable perspectives on our market.
- They help me navigate alternatives.
- They provide ongoing advice or consultation.
- They help me avoid potential land mines.
- They educate me on new issues and outcomes.
I plan to write more on this subject later. But for now, suffice it to say that at Doescher Advisors, we believe the most successful new business developers “help” their clients/customers; they do not “sell” them.
I would love to hear from you. In your experience, what do you think?