We can now claim that we are in the Artificial Intelligence era. Along the last 10 years, there have been so many changes and technological improvements that we hadn’t got time enough to realize how fast is changing everything. Technologies, business models, commercial schemes… almost everything has changed. However, how are B2B sales being done nowadays? In most companies it is doing as it was 10 years ago.
If we could set a nick name to this era, from my point of view, it is the era of “now“. We are not used to wait. TWe buy something, we want it immediately. We do not spend time in long queues in banks or shoppings. Even in autonomous workers are managing their times in different ways. For example, Über drivers, do not seek for customers, their mobile devices inform them who and where the next customer is. Reducing times. Instantly.
However, in B2B sales we are stuck. we wait. We are still doing an slow sale process. The “traditional” (*) can be briefed as it follows:
- User goes into your site, fills a form.
- The company contact him by email. He will be eventually qualified as a potential customer.
- Sales rep contact him and, at last, negotiation and sale takes place.
Slow, isn’t it? This process can take between days and weeks. It is the business area which has evolved less in the last 10 years. In International IT Advisors we believe that this process is changing, evolving. Mainly due to the advances in Artificial Intelligence.
Sales process is so slow because there has been little innovation towards it. However, some companies had already started to make some changes and integrate B2B sales solutions. Some of them are investing since 2016 to transform B2B sales process into agile. Even ourselves, International IT Advisors, have don some software developments for some startups related to this issues.
Let’s check the new process:
- User goes into your site … and he/she starts talking to a chatbot.
- The chatbot evaluates and qualifies the potential customer instantly.
- Best qualified prospects will directly be in touch with sales reps.
This process takes places in just minutes. All depends on how long the customer takes to answers the questions made by the chatbot. This process is much faster, now you efforts will be to have an accurate bot. No delays.
It is completely normal to think that hiring or implementing this kind of solutions is going to be expensive and difficult. Even worse, you may think that it will take a long time to have it.
Absolutely not. Once again, thanks to the technological improvements, thanks to Cloud Computing, having a chatbot has become simple. Companies like Google, Amazon, Microsoft among others are offering Natural Language Processing APIs or event Chatbots (like DialogFlow). So many startups are developing amazing bots. A couple of years ago bots were designed for customer care issues. This is changing. Chatbots are for almost everything!
You company has a few alternatives:
- There are companies (startups and SME) making “self-customized” bots so you can adapt it you the needs of your company. This solutions are more generic, but work good, are fast to have them with you and they are cheap.
- Ask to an IT Factory to develop it. It will be more expensive but it may guarantee you the best results.
- Do it yourself using APIs and framewokrs of the Big Four: Amazon, Google, Microsoft, IBM. This should be only for people with experience in this kind of developments. It is easy to make a bot, but to have bot “who” is expert in a determinate area may be much more complicated.
We strongly advise you to evaluate these alternatives as soon as possible. Remember, in the wordl where we live now, innovate and adapt!
(*) It is funny that we claim a “traditional” B2B sales methodology which would be considered young in any other area being 10-15 years old. It is just another example of the world we live in.