As technology continues to change the way we work, it’s also radically transforming how we capture and keep some of our most valuable assets: business-to-business (B2B) relationships. It’s no secret that B2B sales depend on superior communication, expert positioning, and seamless collaboration among partners. Yet, the way we achieve such functionality is rapidly morphing—from in-person meetings to online transactions, and now—to mobile applications that support real-time contact while in the field.
Mobile Innovation and B2B Content Delivery
According to Eccolo Media’s 2014 B2B Technology Content Survey Report, out of 503 respondents responsible for influencing or making their company’s technology purchasing decisions, 71 percent consume vendor content on a mobile device, and out of 16 identified content types, ranging from white papers to tweets, all types were consumed through a mobile channel by at least some respondents.
Leveraging this capability to enable more direct outreach efforts, quicker response times, and smoother sales cycles requires equipping your B2B sales team with the right tools for CRM support—and outdated, legacy IT systems may hinder their abilities to move forward in this increasingly competitive marketplace.
Performance and Profit: The Challenges of Legacy IT
Sticking with outmoded resources slows your workforce down by requiring employees to rely on multiple programs as they juggle relationship management, pipeline and forecasting duties, and transaction oversight—a cumbersome dance that can easily result in user error and negatively impact your bottom line. In fact, according to a recent study by Microsoft, more than 90 percent of consumers would consider taking their business elsewhere before they worked with a company who relied on outdated technology.
This same logic applies to B2B sales: Your tools are a reflection of your capacity and your commitment to quality, and keeping up in the digital age means making sure your sales team is utilizing the latest in CRM technology.
Leveraging Flexible CRM to Increase B2B Accuracy
Increasingly, this means making the jump to flexible, cloud-based solutions that offer effortless end-to-end integration, connecting multiple platforms including back-end office systems and other external products and devices, for a single customer view.
This approach reduces complexities and allows your team to communicate with prospects and clients, create and close opportunities, adjust forecasts, and perform daily task management—all from within the same, central database, accessible via their preferred mobile device. As a result, the data extracted from these solutions is reliable, easier to access, and more accurate than information previously cobbled together from on-premise systems.
In the world of B2B sales, managing relationships isn’t just essential to closing a deal—it’s the backbone of your business, and staying relevant, engaging, and connected is required to ensure longevity. Replacing outdated legacy systems with new, cloud-based CRM solutions is more than a smart software purchase. It’s an investment in the functionality—and future—of your business.
Gu, Bel. “The New B2B Business Imperative: Simple IT To Support Field Sales Efficiency,” Bluewolf, June 22, 2015. http://www.bluewolf.com/blog/new-b2b-business-imperative-simple-it-support-field-sales-efficiency.
“How Outdated Technology Can Cost Your Business,” Microsoft Infographic, December 12, 2013, http://blogs.microsoft.com/firehose/2013/12/12/small-businesses-succeed-by-embracing-modern-technology/.
Eccolo Media 2014 B2BTechnology Content Survey Report, Eccolo Media Inc., December 2013. www.eccolomedia.com.