6 B2B Sales Trends for Amazing Success in 2019

Sabrina Ferraioli

“A trend gains power over time, because it’s not merely part of a moment, it’s a tool, a connector that will become more valuable as other people commit to engaging in it."

 — Seth Godin

To stay ahead of the competition and thrive, it’s essential to identify and adopt sales techniques that can boost your productivity and results. So we’ve developed a list of the hottest trends. While some are just emerging, others have been gaining traction for several years.

Which ones will put your business on the inside track to success in the coming year?

1. Data matters more than ever

Today, the comprehensiveness of customer data separates winners from losers. The front-runners focus on data hygiene and ensuring they have accurate and holistic customer information across sales, marketing and service departments.

For example, notes about sales calls that field reps currently might keep in a variety of mobile apps should be integrated into CRM systems. Also, data from channels such as chat, social media, phone, web and more must come together into a single view of the customer.

2. Automated sales prospecting

Sales prospecting tools, such as Pipedrive, Vainu.io and Intelisale, enable businesses to use filters and predictive insights to choose prospects wisely and focus on those most likely to convert. In addition to finding the right people to contact at the right time, reps have up-to-date information at their fingertips on the latest news and other information about their prospects and their businesses.

Given the premium placed on salespeople’s time, anything that increases prospecting efficiency is sure to become a go-to tool.

3. Account-based selling becomes entrenched

Account-based selling (ABS) has been around a while, and it looks like it's here to stay.

This strategic sales approach enables companies to focus their resources on closing deals with accounts that will make a significant impact on their bottom lines rather than chasing down inbound leads that happen to come their way. As technology provides even better ways to target such accounts and personalize the sales and marketing approach, ABS is becoming increasingly influential.

4. Social selling

Social selling, unlike social media marketing, is a one-to-one methodology. More and more, reps are using social media platforms as a channel through which to start conversations and begin developing relationships with their prospects.

They review LinkedIn profiles and Facebook pages, for example, to gain insights on individuals and find, connect and converse with the right prospects.

According to Forrester, “B2B companies that embrace social selling are 72% more likely to exceed quotas than their peers who don’t.” The catch is that it can be time-consuming. To cut down on the time it takes, many tools are emerging. You can use them to pull social media data into CRM systems, share the ideal content at the right moment with the right person, customize engagement with social drip campaigns and track all of your social activities.

5. Automated personal emails

While artificial intelligence (AI) will not replace a professional salesperson, it will enable them to be more efficient. For instance, AI now customizes emails to prospects and addresses their problems. It can also tailor email subject lines based on what will entice prospects to open them. If necessary, salespeople can edit the AI drafts. While the technology is in its early phase, it will inevitably become more sophisticated and effective.

6. The human touch remains critical

In a world of artificial intelligence (AI), automation and technological devices, the need for human connection does not go away. Perhaps it’s needed more than ever before.

So we cannot let machines do all the work. Salespeople should employ technology to increase their productivity and to personalize their outreach, then use the time that’s freed up for more human interaction. By making a human connection, they’ll separate themselves from the pack.

Face-to-face communications may not be necessary. Reps can form strong bonds via phone and web conferencing apps such as GoToMeeting and Skype.

As you move forward into 2019, make sure your customer data is accurate and complete. Consider saving time and increasing effectiveness by using automated prospecting tools, the latest ABS technology and AI-powered sales emails. Also, make social selling an integral part of your outreach. And with all this technology to empower your salespeople, make sure they continue to do what they do best — reach out with a human touch.

Sabrina Ferraioli is co-founder of 3D2B, which provides B2B customer acquisition solutions to high-tech companies worldwide, including lead generation services, telemarketing services and lead qualification.