Why B2B buyers now hate traditional B2B selling

Most salespeople say their organizations aren’t ready for online selling.

Nearly all (86%) B2B buyers want to be sold to virtually, according to a new survey. However, most salespeople say their sales organizations aren’t yet able to handle this. 

Buyers like the on-line experience because they hate traditional sales techniques. Here are the five ones they hate the most, according to a report by Showpad, a revenue enablement technology provider:

  • Sellers not taking “no” for an answer even once it’s been made clear they are not interested (48%).
  • Persistent calls and messages (47%).
  • Getting hassled after a presentation (31%).
  • Salespeople not knowing their products (27%).
  • Getting sent too much information (24%).

B2B buyers want B2C experiences. More than 75% of buyers expect the role of social media in B2B sales to increase over the next five years. Nearly 60% say they’ve already made a purchase following a metaverse or augmented reality demo. 

The social media they’re referring to isn’t one dedicated to business. Here’s the ones they are already using the most frequently to make business purchases: 

  • Facebook (69%).
  • Instagram (57%).
  • YouTube (48%).
  • LinkedIn (26%).

Salespeople get it. Nearly 90% of B2B sellers agree about the importance of social media and which channels are the most important. This is understandable because 79% say they have a clear understanding of digital-first selling. Unfortunately, they don’t feel the same about their organizations: Only 27% say their business sales team fully incorporates digital selling.

This is despite the fact that 74% say their firm has a standardized system for this and 71% saying the company is currently spending enough on tech to support sales teams. The problem: 53% feel they could use more training in digital sales. 

For the report Showpad surveyed 508 U.S. and U.K. technology, manufacturing and finance companies with annual revenues ranging from $ 2 million to $ 1 billion. Job titles included practitioners, managers, directors, and executives across sales, marketing and enablement teams.

Why we care. It’s clearly past time for old-school, pressure sales tactics to go away. Salespeople, being closest to the customers, know this. Unfortunately, they may be operating in organizations or under managers that don’t fully get it yet. It’s heartening to see the huge number of salespeople who say the problem isn’t the tech or the spending on it. The biggest roadblocks appear to be institutional inertia and training. The latter can help get over the former.

The post Why B2B buyers now hate traditional B2B selling appeared first on MarTech.


About The Author

Constantine von Hoffman is managing editor of MarTech. A veteran journalist, Con has covered business, finance, marketing and tech for CBSNews.com, Brandweek, CMO, and Inc. He has been city editor of the Boston Herald, news producer at NPR, and has written for Harvard Business Review, Boston Magazine, Sierra, and many other publications. He has also been a professional stand-up comedian, given talks at anime and gaming conventions on everything from My Neighbor Totoro to the history of dice and boardgames, and is author of the magical realist novel John Henry the Revelator. He lives in Boston with his wife, Jennifer, and either too many or too few dogs.