The modern sales method: results and insights from the CSO Insights buyer preferences study

Posted September 3, 2019

By Audrey Weber

Associate Content Editor at Outreach

Selling success depends on buyer behavior. Anticipating how your customers will behave in different scenarios prepares you to counter objections and address their needs.

But that, of course, is easier said than done. Today’s buyers are complex beings with a level of sophistication that takes an ocean of data to decipher layer by layer. Hard to pin down, buyer sentiment can also change from one state to another in a flash, leaving your messaging off-target and your calls to action largely unanswered.

Modern buyers have access to more knowledge — and power — than ever before. Several factors drove this shift but the digital economy provided the strongest push that empowered the modern buyer. With the internet serving as a gateway to a virtually limitless amount of information, today’s buyers gain more visibility and control over their own challenges and aspirations. They can access more information about you and your competitors faster and from more sources. Without a doubt, modern buyers have come to own the sales conversation.

In the B2B space, the rules get even more difficult. Purchase decisions are made by multiple executives, with most companies having around six to eight signatories to approve a single enterprise buy-in. These decision makers are well-informed. But they have different personalities and have diverse — sometimes conflicting — priorities. Under these conditions, moving everyone into a positive consensus about your brand obviously takes tremendous effort to pull off.

The result: a more complicated sales process that takes longer to close.

So how do you stay on top of the game?

Start by matching buyer knowledge with seller insight. A new report by CSO Insights reveals:

  1. Secrets to understanding the next generation of corporate buyers
  2. Strategies for capturing new accounts and growing existing ones
  3. The role of sales engagement in systematizing and scaling success

Engaging the Modern Buyer Requires a Modern Sales Approach is a study that synthesizes groundbreaking research into the current state of sales, the emerging opportunities for B2B sellers, and the best practices and solutions that squarely address the looming challenges ahead.

Among other things, the report:

  • Brings clarity as to which actions sellers can take to build better connections and relationships with customers
  • Shows how to optimize the sales process and improve win rates using data analytics

Be In the Know

There’s a growing gap between buyer and seller that puts B2B relationships at risk. From an average quota attainment rate of 63% in 2011, the crucial metric dipped to just 53% in 2017, according to the Miller Heiman Group. Based on those numbers, nearly half of sales professionals fail to achieve quota.

Meanwhile, a survey of nearly 900 global sales leaders showed that fewer than 25% of corporate buyers view sellers as a resource to solve business problems, with most buyers having very little incentive to engage sellers until late in the game.

These trends pose a huge problem for sellers because generating good business requires building relationships and understanding the specific pain points of their customers. Doing either takes time and a lot of meaningful conversations, something that is nearly impossible if buyers agree to make contact only at the end of the sales cycle. By then, only price points and feature sets will be up for debate, at the expense of sustained growth, shared success, and strategic partnerships in other areas.

There is a better way.

Modern buyers expect hyper-personalized service and seamless customer experiences. Sellers can accomplish this on scale by bringing science into sales.

The report by CSO Insights will show you how to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of your engagement approach. It will help you learn how to:

  1. Create value-based messaging to reach your audience
  2. Ensure an omnichannel consistency in your outreach
  3. Scale sales engagement performance
  4. Use analytics to continually optimize outcomes

Selling is tough and you need all the help you can get. So gain the insight you need and stay ahead of the curve.


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