Selling to B2B Prospects: The Real Enemy is Fear of Change
Learn how to overcome resistance to change and make successful B2B sales by understanding human behavior and psychology. Discover the power of empowering your prospects as advocates for your solution.
The reality of selling to B2B prospects is that it is a numbers game. And this is why many entrepreneurs tend to focus on trying to keep up with the market, looking at the newest tool available, and having a martech stack that would make many envious. However, I contend that the reality is the real focus should be on the person who resists change and always chooses the known over the unknown. Why? Because selling to B2B prospects is all about trust—and if you can't win their trust, then you will never be able to close a sale.
When it comes to selling to B2B prospects, many entrepreneurs focus on the competition as their main enemy. However, the reality is that your real enemy is the person who is afraid to change. This is because, when it comes down to it, your inability to make a sale has nothing to do with your products or services. It has everything to do with the person you are trying to sell to and their fear of change.
One example of this is Anna, the CMO of a tech consulting firm. You may have connected with her on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Instagram and have been building rapport with her through direct messages. She may have shown interest in your services as a consultant or coach, and you may have gone all in explaining your features and benefits.
Let's say you sell a lead generation service. Anna may recognize the benefits of your professional guidance and assistance, including the potential cost and time savings. But, even though she recognizes these benefits, she may still be hesitant to change because it involves risking her "career" by throwing her lot with you. As a CMO, she knows that it is common for CMOs to be easily replaced, and she may be worried that taking you up on your offer could lead to her leaving her job sooner than she would like. Additionally, she may be paralyzed by the thought that "what if this is just a sales pitch and it doesn't work?"
So, what do you do if you met someone like Anna? The key is to focus your efforts on empowering them as advocates for the solution. Challenge your customer to see the bigger picture and help them become the hero of their own story. Who doesn't love being a hero? By guiding them through the solution without triggering their fight or flee response that traditional sales techniques advocate, you are less likely to have to "wrestle" them for the sale. It is easy to assume that they are just not motivated enough, but you may want to rethink where you think the resistance is coming from. They are not motivated by pain or pleasure, but by very real potential consequences. In some cases, these consequences involve other people and in others, it's just a loss of control over a situation — whether it be losing control over their business or losing self-control over a bad habit.
So, one way to overcome the resistance without the prospect going ghost, is to let your content do the heavy lifting for you. However, it's important to note that the way you use content should be different from traditional methods. Instead of using content in a traditional "sales pitch" way, use it to advocate for your services and educate your prospects on the benefits of making a change. This is what we train our coaching clients on, and it's the core of what we implement in our consulting clients' businesses.
In conclusion, when it comes to selling to B2B prospects, your enemy is not the competition; your enemy is the person who is afraid to change. By understanding human behavior and psychology in marketing and sales, you can empower your prospects to become advocates for your solution and guide them through the process without triggering their fight-or-flee response. By using content in a different way, you can do the heavy lifting for your business and increase your chances of making a sale.
About the Contributor
Tanya Kabuya is the founder of Wizz Digital, a South Africa & Nigeria-based marketing strategy consultancy that assists Tech Startups & consulting businesses to grow their audiences, attract clients, and cultivate brand recognition through social media by deploying the Content Marketing Ecosystem Playbook, our proprietary Framework. Find out more