How to Sell in a Challenging Changing B2B Market

No one ever said growing a business was easy.

So it should come as no surprise when you find that the market isn’t always ideal for selling your products or services.

HandleCareWebYour wares may go in and out of favor. You could have growing competition. Regulations may change. Costs almost always rise, including postage for direct mail or using freelance service providers.

In the end, no matter how good your products or services may be, selling comes down to your willingness to adjust tactics and adapt to any challenges you face. It’s really about getting back to the basics of selling.

One of the most basic selling tactics is to collect and use customer intelligence. Those who have made a recent purchase offer you your best opportunity for additional purchases. How often someone buys is an indicator of how closely aligned that person is with your products and services. What people spend gives you an idea about their overall value as a customer – a customer who buys $500 in products is obviously more valuable than someone who is only willing to spend $50.

Seeking better efficiency is a way to make your marketing communications more profitable. This means constantly testing new tactics such as direct mail with email, to see which formats and production methods offer you the best value. It’s not a matter of doing “cheap” direct mail. It’s a matter of finding what gives you the best return on your investment.

If testing shows that mailing a more expensive direct mail piece creates more net profit than a less expensive direct mail piece, then the more expensive piece is the more efficient. Being cheap for cheap sake is false economy.

EmalVsDirectMail copyThe offers you make are also critical to success. The tendency for many businesses is to find an offer that works and never test another offer. This is a serious mistake. Different people respond to different offers at different times. A high-spending customer may not be price sensitive and not a good candidate for a dollars-off promotion. But this same offer may be ideal for low-dollar customers. You should always be testing offers.

Finally, the names in your customer contact management system are perhaps the single most important element in any direct marketing promotion. A highly-targeted list of contacts makes everything else you do easier.

Whenever you send a message to people who want what you’re selling, you’re almost guaranteed success if you present a clear relevant message and strong offer. It makes those selling challenges a little easier to overcome.

Sometimes the smallest change gets you the largest result. Keep testing.

Please share – it’s greatly appreciated.

Got any questions? Get an answer. 815-496-9900

Everything marketing starts and ends with your customers… cater to them, listen to them and react to them. The results will amaze you.

© 2013 by the Marketing Communications Group, Inc. No part of this publication may be stored in a retrieval system, transmitted, or reproduced in any way, including but not limited to digital copying and printing without the prior agreement and written permission of the publisher. Photographs are purchased from such companies as I-Stock, Solid Stock Art, Windows Clip Art, HubSpot or John Deuerling.




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30+ years in marketing. 30+ years as a small business owner. Love music, photography, gardening and just about anything outdoors!

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