MARKET VIEW 05

Carol Howley

MARKETING DIRECTOR

I believe the key here is to encourage salespeople to be proactive in the sense of sharing thought leadership, looking at social selling elements and content dissemination planning.

In light of the generational shift to digital self service, what can companies do to better support their salespeople during the buying process?

B2B buying doesn’t play out in a linear order; there are a lot of phases in the process and a lot of people who are involved. One thing we've tried to do is align our activities and our people with those phases and divide our activity, so that we can support buyers in each one. This enables the sales team to be available to solve problems, utilise digital content and support the buyers throughout those stages. I believe the key here is to encourage salespeople to be proactive in the sense of sharing thought leadership, looking at social selling elements and content dissemination planning. We need to give salespeople as much information and make the content that we've got as relevant as possible.

I believe it is really important to encourage salespeople, and all other employees across the business to be very active on social channels. To help them understand how to build their brand, to support the company brand, how to articulate that and demonstrate their expertise.

How can salespeople best adapt to media habits and preferences of millennials who are rapidly becoming the buyers of enterprise technology and services?

I believe it is really important to encourage salespeople, and all other employees across the business to be very active on social channels. To help them understand how to build their brand, to support the company brand, how to articulate that and demonstrate their expertise. This will help them influence and connect with buyers in the sales process and prospective future customers by positioning us as a long-term advisor and source of quality resources. Having that kind of presence in the customer's thought process, playing that advisory role, being relevant, regularly featured and supported by other media outlets as well, engenders trust and positions effectively to generate future business.

So, it’s about focusing on customer experience, standing true to your values and being really clear on what you're doing and what you're selling as a company.

CAROL HOWLEY

Marketing Director

CANONICAL

What other advice can you offer to B2B sales and marketing teams when engaging buyers?

People are quick to see through brands that are not honest and open and that don't stand by their promises, they are also quick to take time on social media or on different forums to actually point that out, and to query things. So, it’s about focusing on customer experience, standing true to your values and being really clear on what you're doing and what you're selling as a company. This is how you build trust, which is crucial because in business everything hinges on trust. At the end of the day, people want to feel confident that they’re making a good decision and buy into your brand.

Canonical delivers open source to the world faster, more securely and more cost effectively than any other company. They develop Ubuntu, the world’s most popular enterprise Linux from cloud to edge, together with a passionate global community of 200,000 contributors. An operating system that runs from the tiny connected devices up to the world's biggest mainframes, the platform that everybody uses on the public cloud, and the workstation experience of the world's most productive developers.

Up next: Market View 06

David Glasspool, Amphora

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