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Is B2B becoming E2P?

Posted by Todd Hussey

Mar 29, 2016 11:14:23 AM

 

Say what? Yes, that's not a typo. Is marketing and selling Business2Business becoming more Educator2Persona? B2B is where a business has a widget well designed (hopefully) for the needs of another business and the marketing and sales goes something like this - go find the target business, find the decision maker, influencers, evaluators etc, sell your value proposition, go through a sales process and you'll get some percentage of those deals - so a business selling to a business.

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But in today's world the buyer is now in charge of the sales process. A person (or persona) whether it be the decision maker, influencer or evaluator at a business starts their buyers journey that goes something like this 1. awareness 2. consideration 3. decision. And in this buyers journey the personas are all educating themselves on-line on what the widget can do for them and their business. And who is responsible for educating the personas? – the educator of course (aka the business that's selling).

I firmly believe today sales = education. Think about your most recent purchase like a TV or washing machine or CRM. You most likely didn’t start your buyers journey by going to a store or call the CRM rep and ask a bunch of questions (awareness) then do that again after you became aware (consideration) then make your decision. You did that on line. You probably went 75% down the buyers journey before even talking to someone.

So isn’t the business that’s selling now the Educator to specific Personas at the business that’s buying? E2B. And the educator now needs to provide content to educate several different persons to fill their appetite as they go through the buyers journey? So why do I see so much marketing and selling based on trying to find that persona that’s going through a buyers journey now and when they do find that needle in a haystack if they are not deemed ready to buy soon they move on? “If I chase this person enough and maybe give a hefty discount they might bite now”. – I don’t think so.

And when was the last time you picked up the phone without knowing who was calling? And if you did and the person was trying to sell you something did you spend time allowing the person to educate you?

So why do I see so many VARs, MSPs, CSPs, SaaS ISVs etc. hire a sales rep and give them a list to call? Every time I end up seeing that sales rep gone after 3-6 months.

Doesn't it make more sense to focus on educating your personas with some quality content and nurture them as they go through their buyers journey?

We’re in an E2P world………………………..just saying.

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Topics: digital marketing, cost of sales

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