After nearly three years of being bogged down by restrictions, businesses are eager to get back to normal. But what if normal isn’t going back to where we were pre-pandemic? What if we’re looking at a new normal for B2B sales?
Let’s be honest, the days of the “traditional” B2B sales model are over. Just as the COVID-19 pandemic forced employees into a remote/hybrid work model, the same happened to B2B sales. With face-to-face time suspended, the push to digital channels gained traction. Thus, we were introduced to the hybrid sales model.
What is it exactly?
Simply put, the hybrid sales model combines digital and in-person interactions for B2B sales. This approach provides the convenience of digital communication (such as phone, email, social media, video conferences, web chat), but retains the personal touch of face-to-face interaction when needed. This reflects society’s push toward a more digitized world.
We’re not reinventing the wheel
The idea of the hybrid sales model isn’t a new concept. Both in-person and digital communication options were already available to customers pre-pandemic; the difference now is that both are expected.
Before the pandemic, having both options was just an added benefit. Now that so much of our lives is centered around technology and convenience, customers want and expect more.
In a study conducted by McKinsey & Company, the number of channels used by B2B decision makers to interact with suppliers has doubled since 2016. That means consumers are expanding their communication methods. Therefore, it’s more important than ever to be sure your messaging is where your customers are.
Efficiency is key
Convenience is at the core of the hybrid sales model. Of course, several options of communication is an obvious benefit, but there’s more to it. For example, the hybrid model is a time-saver. Instead of jumping through all the hoops to meet with a client in-person, location becomes irrelevant. The reduction of time—and expense—spent traveling is a game-changer.
Not only does the hybrid sales model save time, but the variety of communication helps build trust between buyer and seller. The added benefit of scheduling online meetings is they can be put together at short intervals which, in turn, make follow-up work easier and more consistent. This is how trust can be built in B2B relationships.
Is it worth making the switch?
The short answer is yes. The shift to a more digitized B2B experience has been a long time coming. And it’s only going to ramp up from here. It is expected that by 2025, 80% of B2B sales interactions will occur over digital channels. In other words, it’s not going away. As mentioned before, B2B customers want more. The hybrid model satisfies that want, through more channels, personalization, and convenience.
If you want to keep up with the Joneses, the hybrid sales model is the way to go. The pandemic showed buyers and sellers how accessible and even profitable remote interactions can be, and how easy it is to maintain the relationships they had pre-pandemic.
Contact us to learn about our services that can put you well on your way to making the change to a hybrid sales model.