Study: here’s the ideal technology stack for B2B salespeople!
After years of salespeople being sidelined in favour of marketers, R&D has clearly made a comeback in the sales function, as evidenced by the boom in the SalesTech market. Here is the chronicle of a digital shift that was negotiated too late.
1- Over the last 20 years, MarTech has dominated SalesTech
Historically, R&D has always favoured marketing, with technological dazzling following the direction of leads in the funnel. The first marketing tools in the contemporary sense began to appear on the market and in companies in the early 2000s.
Today’s marketers are spoilt for choice… and that’s not all good news. In fact, 63% of B2B marketers in the Tech and SaaS sectors are still looking to increase their use of digital tools in 2022, 35% intend to maintain their current technology stack and only 2% plan to clean out their toolbox (a study carried out by 93x and Finite).
This conclusion is in line with the impressive turnover affecting marketing tools, a phenomenon highlighted by a MarTech Series study published in May 2021. Two-thirds of marketers surveyed said they had replaced at least “one major marketing solution” in 2020.
On the Sales side, the technological innovations are far less obvious. On Google, the keyword “MarTech”, which stands for “Marketing Technology”, returns more than 18 million results. “SalesTech” produces almost 8 times less. Some explain the sluggishness of SalesTech by the “conservative” side of the sales function, while others point to an intrinsic difference in the needs of each profession. Whatever the case, SalesTech seems to be coming out of hibernation… because salespeople are beefing up their technology stack, and the figures bear this out!
2- The checklist of digital solutions for salespeople who outperform
In a study published in early May 2022, Gartner predicts that 65% of B2B Sales decision-makers will transition from an intuition-based decision-making model and other subjective elements to a Data-Driven decision-making model by 2026. Naturally, the ability to identify, collect, analyze, and interpret data calls for a high-performing, aligned, and integrated technological stack. Are we witnessing the digital transformation of the sales function?
The market signals certainly seem to confirm this: Salesforce announced an investment plan of over 3 billion euros in France, HighSpot (Sales Enablement) completed a funding round of 248 million dollars last January, Seismic, Salesloft, and Drift have achieved unicorn status (valuation exceeding one billion dollars), and so on.
The sales function is experiencing an exciting period. Salespeople are building their toolkit, refining their sales pitch, adapting to the new demands of the super-buyer, finding their place in ABM, and enhancing their alignment with marketing.
To delve into the foray of SalesTech in the daily lives of salespeople, DemandGen Report dedicated the 2022 edition of the “State of Sales Acceleration” to the technological stack of the sales function. This research work provides a checklist of essential solutions to boost the performance of the modern salesperson. Summary:
- A Sales Enablement platform to equip salespeople before (customer knowledge, training), during (sales presentation), and after (coaching, data) client meetings.
- A Sales Engagement solution to plan, execute, measure, and optimize customer interactions in an omnichannel mode.
- An integrated Purchase Intent analysis tool in the CRM and Marketing Automation solution to work on the timing of the approach.
- A simple and engaging video editing tool to reach prospects higher in the funnel and/or vary the approaches.
- An SDR (Sales Development Representative) platform to better qualify prospects and prioritize leads based on their purchase intent and business potential.
- A conversational marketing tool to integrate instant messaging into the communication channels available to sales teams.
This selection from DemandGen Report emphasizes two elements to address two major challenges in the sales function:
- Automation to relieve salespeople from repetitive and low-value tasks. According to a study by HubSpot,
- salespeople spend, on average, more than half of their day on tasks indirectly related to sales (content research, internal communication, etc.);
- Personalization to align with the expectations of a more demanding, autonomous, and better-informed super-buyer. Large-scale personalization was indeed a major topic of discussion at the last Adobe Summit.