The need for trust
All of our Clients at the Database Dept. sell B2B – business to business. But that label is misleading, because businesses don’t really sell to businesses – people sell to people.
In a complex B2B sale many people may be involved in the buying decision – and several people may be involved in selling – but it’s still human beings that make the decisions.
And, all else being equal, human beings prefer to buy from people with whom they have a relationship and who they trust.
If a sales representative follows up a lead – in other words talks to a person – he or she has a much better chance of quickly developing a relationship with the “lead” if they already have a trusted relationship with someone else from the sales rep’s company.
Our ARM Business Platform philosophy and methodologies are based around building trusted relationships with our Clients’ potential customers before they become leads. But it takes time and effort to build trust.
Trust based methodologies
The Database Dept.’s ARM Business Platform is based around building relationships with people who are not yet ready to purchase from our Clients and developing trusted relationships with them – so that when they are ready, they know, understand and trust our Clients.
ARM stands for Authentic Relationship Management and all our methodologies, practices and processes are designed to develop authentic, trusted relationships with our Clients’ future customers.
How we build trust
Trust isn’t built overnight. It’s earned by following some key principles. These include being consistent, relevant, honest, providing value, sharing information, listening and following through. Our cloud based WebONE Integrated Marketing Database, with its data management and contact management systems, and our ARM Business Platform helps our Consultants to build trust and gives them tools that help them to do so. They can;
- View all conversations and communications at an individual (contact) and company level by every touch point (e.g. phone, email, digital, events, etc.)
- Understand the contacts’ and companies’ business issues and what does (and doesn’t) interest them
- Ensure all communications are contextual and integrated – that is, that previous conversations are taken into account
- Ensure all communications are relevant to the contacts’ interests
- View all education and collateral that’s been shared with contacts so we know what they’re interested in
- View contacts’ opinions on a variety of relevant topics and develop insights about the market
- Provide value by sharing relevant market insights in real time
- Understand their future plans and priorities
- Measure the level of trust within the relationship
By understanding people’s perspective, business needs and their future plans and by providing ongoing education, assistance and nurturing we develop trust – so when potential customers are ready to buy, they already know, understand and trust our Clients.
This trust based approach is “The Future of Selling” in the Digital World.
The right perspective
In sales and marketing it’s critical to understand things from the perspective of the person you’re talking to and to address the issues and solve the problems they care about. And almost everyone cares primarily about themselves, their job and their own customers.
So that’s what we talk about on this web site – what our Clients want to achieve, the business problems they need to address and what their customers want. These perspectives differ depending on what roles we talk to – CEOs, Sales Directors, CMOs, CFOs, and Heads of Channels – and we discuss their issues in their terms, not ours.
Similarly when we contact prospects on behalf of our Clients we focus on understanding their customers’ business issues, their perspectives, beliefs, constraints and so on. This helps us to develop relationships and build trust very effectively.
We believe we must “seek first to understand then be understood“. If we understand what our Clients’ customers and prospects need and care about, we can help our Clients identify how they can help and educate them until they are ready to purchase. This focus gives our Clients a much better chance of selling their products, solutions and services and of providing their customers with true value.