What do your buyers value most during the pre-purchase phase for their IT products or solutions? Spending quality time with your sales reps? Doing a feature by feature comparison versus your competitors? Hardly. The top 2 most valued activities by buyers are:
- Interacting with your company’s technical teams. (e.g., CTO, presales engineers)
- Consumption of vendor content à Financial justification/ROI is #1 here
Sure, buyers put “interacting with sales reps” as next in line; and reps are the ones that will be the key facilitators and match-makers to make these activities happen as part of customer enablement. But what’s most surprising, are the results that just came out of IDC’s 2012 Sales Investment and Productivity Benchmarks study. (click here for full study for Sales Advisory clients) We asked many of the largest BtoB vendors in the world how long it takes for their sales rep to find different types of information within their organization in response to buyers’ needs. Can you guess which two types of information took the longest to find to meet buyers’ needs? (refer to Figure below)
- 45% of companies indicated that it takes their sales reps 1 to 5 days or longer to find ROI-related sales assets from across their organization.
- 39% of companies indicated that it takes their sales reps 1 to 5 days to find the best fit presales person for their prospects.
Yup, that’s right, as technology sales organizations, we’re having the greatest difficulty fulfilling the top two most valued activities in the buying process for our prospects.