New presidential administrations are customarily assessed after the first 100 days.
New hires frequently have 90 days on the job before a review.
In B2B sales, those sort of time frames can seem luxurious. Complex sales may take more than a year to close, but buyers are continuously assessing suppliers for their knowledge, how well they understand the prospect’s unique needs, and, most of all, their credibility.
The most successful business relationships rely on trust, and trust is built through honesty, transparency and credibility.
But those three words are easy to fly past. Whether you lead a sales team or you’re just starting out on one, honesty, transparency and credibility can feel like table stakes for sales professionals. In truth, says C. Lee Smith, CEO of SalesFuel, a sales intelligence and enablement firm, these traits are not given nearly enough attention by most sales teams’ go-to-market strategies.
As Lee explains, sales professionals focus on qualifying prospects and too often fail to realize that the prospects are qualifying them. In some instances, sales professionals may recognize the importance of establishing credibility, but aren’t sure how to intentionally do it – and how to call it out once they’ve done it.
That last part is important. Lee’s Hierarchy of Sales Credibility pyramid includes some expected methods of establishing trust – what you say and what you do. At the top of the pyramid, however, is something that many in sales either don’t consider or fail to take full advantage of – what others say about you. More than one-quarter of buyers from small and medium-sized businesses say that a testimonial from a satisfied customer can influence their buying decision as long as it’s credible.
If you lead a team of sales professionals who have established trust among a broad customer base by walking the talk of being true business partners, then your new prospects need to know about it. Client testimonials should be all over your website, including on your home page.
If you don’t have a hefty inventory of current customers singing your praises, ask yourself why not? The information in this report is a great start to helping your team establish credibility, delight customers and to gather more customer referrals than you could ever imagine.