How a cloud-first GTM strategy boosts selling effectiveness

By Kevin O’Regan, SVP International at Seismic
Businesses must find ways to help their sales teams break through the noise and make a meaningful impact with buyers during every interaction

Efficient growth is the order of the day for today’s most ambitious, forward-thinking businesses. However, achieving lasting growth and success in such a complex and volatile economic environment is no mean feat. 

B2B brands of all size and sector are grappling with a lot of stress in the system, driven by a variety of factors. These range from the market uncertainty brought about by factors such as increasing inflation and geopolitical issues, to overcrowded digital channels and evolving buyer demands.

Being able to attract and retain the best talent amidst ‘the great resignation’ is also hindering B2B performance. Indeed, sales and product marketing teams rank the talent crunch as their biggest challenge – with staff shortages commonly resulting in ineffective campaigns or launches (56%), attrition of highly skilled team members (40%), and an inability to achieve revenue goals (36%).

This is all putting significant pressure on go-to-market (GTM) teams to work as effectively as possible. The need to get more for less – both in terms of productivity and efficiency – has been heightened. And, with executives placing sales enablement (61%) and GTM strategy development (56%) at the top of their priority list, B2B brands must be prepared to evolve in order to drive long-term success.

Breaking through

The new era of selling can be characterised by the dominance of digital. We are now in a digital-first and data-driven sales environment, as buyer preferences have shifted away from in-person interactions. Gartner research shows that B2B buyers only spend 17% of the total purchase journey with sales reps, while 44% of millennials working in B2B settings prefer no sales rep interaction at all.

This has led to a highly competitive digital landscape where B2B sellers are constantly competing for buyers’ attention. As such, businesses must find ways to help their sales teams break through the noise and make a meaningful impact with buyers during every interaction.

This highlights a need to go beyond basic content management and analytics. Instead, the focus should be on enabling and empowering customer-facing teams with frictionless digital workflows. To ignite and maintain growth in a digital-prevalent world, B2B brands must be able to create and implement an enablement strategy that provides their go-to-market teams with the right tools, content, skills and insights. 

In short, they must adopt a cloud-first GTM strategy. This is what will enable sales and marketing teams to unite on the delivery of a consistent customer experience throughout the entire buyer journey. By building their GTM process on a single, cloud-based platform, businesses will be able to unleash the value of data and enhance activities in a systematic and agile manner. This is what will ensure optimised and personalised interactions delivered where and when buyers want to engage – within the right context and at scale.

Ultimately, the cloud is the foundation upon which all sales, marketing and customer-facing activities can – and should – be built. That’s the secret to ensuring a connected end-to-end GTM operation that can optimise sales performance and turn digital interactions into business wins.

Cloud power

A connected, cloud-based infrastructure can have a tangible impact on GTM operations. Firstly, an infrastructure that is powered by AI and unifies data across sales and marketing can provide B2B sellers with valuable transparency and intelligence into what does or doesn’t work across the buyer journey. That will give GTM teams the insights needed to engage buyers and win more deals, faster.

For example, with access to one frictionless digital platform, sellers will be able to analyse the data captured from buyer interactions at every stage of the sales cycle to understand the behaviours and activities that will deliver the best outcomes. Or they can tap into in-depth content insights to identify and create the most effective content for specific buyer personas. By receiving content recommendations at a personal level, sellers will be able to create more meaningful interactions that accelerate purchasing decisions.

This visibility will also enable commercial leadership teams to plan and improve GTM strategies more effectively. Having cloud at the core removes many of the blind spots that have hindered senior management’s ability to see how things are working and identify potential bottlenecks.

By connecting all the different elements of the GTM function, leadership teams can plan and take remedial actions based on real-time data insights. They can deliver personalised training programmes to specific sellers, iterate on the most successful projects, and optimise team resources – all from a centralised hub. 

Finally, cloud-first platforms can help solve the talent crunch by delivering more effective training and coaching. Again, it’s all based on data. As well as getting new sellers up to competency quicker through interactive playbooks and scenarios, these platforms can leverage granular performance data to help sellers perfect what to say, show and do at the point of need. Timely and personalised recommendations that show sellers how to replicate the results of their top-performing colleagues will empower them to develop their skills and achieve results.

All this is only possible with cloud at the core. A connected and centralised cloud platform is what will provide B2B businesses with the real performance data needed to more effectively engage audiences with the right content, within the right context, at the right time – thereby driving performance at every revenue moment.

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