Truthfully, there isn't a secret formula or some major transformation you need to make to become a successful B2B sales professional.
Rather, if you just make some simple changes to the way in which you approach sales plus some minor tactical adjustments, you'll actually make the greatest positive impact on your sales performance!
That being said, we're sharing 7 simple things that successful B2B sales reps do differently that make them high-achievers, and set them apart from the rest of the field.
Most of these things are simple mindset and tactical shifts, and while they might seem like minor adjustments, they will make the biggest difference in your ability to close deals.
Remember, the reason why sales is so challenging for so many people is because they make it hard for themselves.
Stop sabotaging your own success and start making these 7 changes now to become the kind of salesperson you know you're capable of becoming!
1. Embracing Beginnership
Why are people so scared to be a beginner?
What's so bad about not knowing exactly what you're doing all the time?
The truth is that, while beginnership is usually scary for people, being a beginner in any field is actually an advantage.
Because, when you're a beginner, you aren't aware of the pointless rules and conventions of the industry, therefore you have a totally direct sales approach.
That being said, top B2B salespeople embrace the powers that come with being a newbie to the industry. Not only that, but they embrace the conventions of beginnership even after they've settled into their role.
Being a beginner isn't something to be afraid of. Rather, it is something to be embraced.
Doing What Makes Sense
Do you remember being in college or taking an online class about interviewing skills?
Do you remember when they would say things in the class like... 'Wait until the second or third interview to ask for salary information, because you don't want them to think you only care about money'?
Then after that, do you remember sinking back into your chair and thinking... 'That doesn't make any sense. Why would I not ask for salary information up-front so that I don't waste my time or their time?'?
Here's the thing: Social conventions like waiting until later interviews to ask about salary are not only stupid, but they actually crush your potential.
The good thing about being a beginner is that you're not aware of stupid social conventions! Instead, you simply do what makes most sense to you.
Usually, when you simply do what makes sense, you're more direct. And when you're more direct, you usually get what you want!
Beginners Are Fearless
When you're a beginner, you're usually fearless.
For example, you'll go knocking on doors and going straight to top stakeholders because you haven't had time to build up unreasonable fears.
On the other hand, if you’ve been in the industry for a while, you might be afraid to go straight to the lead decision-makers because you've been conditioned to believe that that isn't appropriate! Moreover, you’re simply scared to do what needs to be done.
Successful sales pros embrace being fearless as a beginner and keep that momentum going into the future once they're past beginnership.
To put it simply: Being fearless is your superpower as a beginner. Embrace it and carry it on into the future.
2. Staying True to Who They Are
Have you ever walked into a sales pitch and been immediately captivated by the sales rep giving the pitch?
Was there just something about them that pulled you in and made you pay attention?
Then, by the end of the presentation, there was simply no way that you could say no to them, because they were just so convincing?
If so, then the truth is that you can radiate that same captivating energy and be utterly impossible to deny by doing just one simple thing: By staying true to your genuine personality and playing off of it.
Think of it like this: When you stay true to who you are and don't put on a front for people, you naturally give off positive energy. That energy is what captivates potential customers and holds them tight in your grip.
On the other hand, when you put on a front for people because you think you need to be something you're not, you naturally radiate an awkward and uncomfortable energy that turns prospects off.
Bottom line: Be yourself to become that captivating and undeniable sales pro.
Developing a Unique Personal Brand
Here's the catch: It's not enough to just say... 'I'm being my genuine self, now love me!'.
Instead, it's about diving deep into what makes you unique to develop your own special persona or personal brand.
Think of it like this... If you were a hero in a movie, what would you wear, talk like, and say for the audience to really get a feel for who you are?
It's not a matter of playing a character you're not. Instead, it’s a matter of turning your everyday self into a character that reflects your unique persona.
Once you've honed in on your own unique personal brand, your job is to project it at all points of the sales pipeline to radiate that positive energy. From the initial outreach to closing deals, let your prospects know who you are and feel that good energy.
Playing to What Makes Them Unique
As a subtle reminder… There's only one version of you on earth.
Nobody has the same unique traits that you have, therefore you need to play to those unique traits to strengthen the effect of your personal brand.
By playing to what makes you unique, you become more memorable to prospects. And when you're sitting at the front of their memory, it makes it much more difficult for them to deny you.
Remember, no sales representative is like you, and you should want to keep it that way! No successful sales rep ever blends in.
3. Understanding Their Potential Customer’s Mindset
Perhaps the greatest skill you can have in life is knowing how to see a situation from somebody else's perspective by stepping into their shoes.
Similarly, one of the greatest sales skills you can have is knowing how to see the buying process from your B2B buyer's shoes.
Why is this skill so powerful?
When you learn to see life from somebody else's perspective, you understand why they think the way they think.
More specifically, you understand how the way that they think influences their internal decision-making process, and how they ultimately come to make buying decisions.
While very important, understanding the in's-and-out's of your B2B lead's pain point isn't all you need to know. What's even more important is understanding their psychological decision-making process!
Understanding the Psychological Decision-Making Process = Major Key
The biggest mistake people make in life is believing that others see life the same way that they see it.
That being said, don't make the mistake of believing that your potential B2B customers make purchasing decisions the same way you do. If you believe that they think the same way as you, you'll likely end up being disappointed!
Therefore, your job is to learn how B2B companies psychologically come to make purchasing decisions. You need to jump in their mind to see what influences them to buy.
More specifically, you need to jump into the minds of the lead decision-makers at the B2B company!
After making a touchpoint of contact with them, set the intention to see life from their perspective, so that you can frame sales pitches in a way that appeals to their unique psychology.
Business-to-Business Sales Is About Relationships
Top B2B sales reps are fully aware that, at the end of the day, B2B sales is about relationships!
Unlike in B2C sales, closing a deal isn't a matter of an individual consumer making a purchase and then never seeing them again. Instead, it's about a long-term, working relationship between a customer and supplier company.
Therefore, top B2B sales pros dive deep into the minds of their customers to understand what it will take to form a solid relationship with them.
From now on, approach each sales encounter as if you're trying to become a reliable friend to the potential customer. And if you're coming from a business-to-consumer sales background, be sure to double down on building relationships!
4. Investing In Themselves Where It’s Needed
Top B2B sales professionals are the last people to think that they know it all. And because they know that they don't know it all, they invest in sales enablement to education and empower themselves where it's needed.
Not only that, but they get their entire sales teams on board and foster a growth mindset culture in their business.
While B2B selling is simple and straightforward, that doesn't necessarily mean that it doesn’t come with its fair share of challenges.
Top sales reps know this, so they commit to being lifelong learners and aren't afraid to invest in their own improvement where and when it's needed.
Becoming Conscious Of What They Need to Work On
If one of your sales techniques clearly isn't working, then doing it any harder than you already are isn't going to make it work!
For example, if you're using the same cold calling outreach tactics for every sales call but aren't getting anywhere, continuing on without changing your formula won't do you any good.
Top sales professionals aren't the kind of people to keep going when something isn't going right. Instead of bypassing the clear issue, they become conscious that it's there and set the intention to improve it.
Believe it or not, but so many sales pros, while they are clearly struggling, don't ever stop and assess the problems at hand.
Don't make that same mistake! When something isn't working, take a step back, check out what's going on, and then make the necessary improvements.
Not Being Afraid to Make the Moves They Need to Make
Sometimes, the hardest thing to do is look in the mirror and tell yourself you need help.
While it is hard, B2B sales pros have no problem doing just that when they realize that they need to equip themselves with new sales tools, skills, and techniques. Moreover, sales pros have no problem making the moves they know they need to make to invest in themselves!
What outlets do they look to to get the boost that they need?
They have two common outlets, including:
Oftentimes, leveling up in sales is about not being afraid to invest in yourself!
5. They Focus On Personal Fulfillment Just as Much as Business
Are you happy doing what you're doing?
No, seriously... Is the path you're currently on in life one that makes you happy?
Here's the thing: You can equip yourself with all the sales tools in the world, have the best B2B marketing strategy, and the best social media content ever, but literally none of it matters if the path you're on doesn't light a special flame inside of you.
At the end of the day, if you're not feeling fulfilled, not only will you be unhappy, but you'll never reach your full potential in business.
We only have so much time on this earth... So, spend your time doing the thing that lights up a flame inside of you!
The Thing That Makes You Fulfilled Is IT
Ever wonder how top sales professionals have so much stamina and enthusiasm for business and sales?
To put it simply... The reason they are that way is because they're passionate about what they do, and doing it makes them feel fulfilled. It's that easy.
When confronted with challenges, they don't fall off the path because their passion keeps them on track.
Unless you have that same kind of fulfillment for what you do, business and sales will feel much more difficult than what it actually is. When problems arise, the odds that you fall off the rails are much greater.
If you're not fulfilled, it's important to ask yourself what's holding you back from doing something that gives you more passion.
Fulfillment Is In the Process
Now, you might be asking... Where does fulfillment come from?
Straight-up: Fulfillment doesn't come from achieving goals, checking boxes, or reaching the top of the summit. Instead, it comes from the upward climb towards the top of the summit.
Sure, achieving goals is important and should make you feel fulfilled. However, you shouldn't base your entire fulfillment on whether or not you achieved your goals.
Because, the moment you achieve a goal lasts for a bitter second.... So, does it make logical sense to base your entire fulfillment off of the one second it takes to check a box, or from the efforts you put in everyday to make a difference and bring a vision to life?
You will know that you're doing the thing that you're meant to do when the climb to the top of the summit is more fulfilling than reaching the summit itself.
6. Not Making the Sales Process Harder Than It Needs to Be
Top B2B sales reps don't make anything that has to do with sales longer and more complicated than it needs to be, particularly the B2B sales process.
Also known as the B2B sales cycle or sales pipeline, the sales process includes all the steps you take to convert leads into paying customers.
By keeping things as short and sweet as possible, top salespeople have two key advantages, including:
- Minimizing the potential for errors
- Pleasing the customers by not wasting their time
Longer B2B Sales Processes Are Bad Processes
Straight-up: Longer sales cycles are worse sales cycles.
The longer a cycle is, the more complicated it inevitably becomes. The more complicated it becomes, the more opportunities that are for problems to arise.
Think of it like this... If you have a simple cycle with as few steps as possible, there are fewer opportunities for things to go haywire.
On the other hand, if you make a complicated process with countless steps, boxes to check, and hoops to jump through, it's only a matter of time before problems arise as a direct result of the process.
Furthermore, keep your cycle as short as possible to minimize the possibility that something goes painfully wrong. Only include what you need, and leave everything else out.
Don’t Make the Selling and Buying Processes Painful Experiences
Not only do you and your sales team members despise long-winded, over-complicated selling processes, but so to your potential customers!
When you develop an extra-long and complicated selling process, it inevitably creates a painful buying process, or sales funnel, for prospects.
At the end of the day, prospects don't want their time wasted. Just like you, they're busy people! If they can make a great purchase in less time and with fewer hoops to jump through, then they've won!
Therefore, make it easy on yourself, your team, and your potential customers by keeping things short and sweet.
7. Thinking Big Picture
The top B2B sales reps always look at life through a big-picture lens.
By that, we mean that they see each of their daily strides as a move towards bringing their grandest visions to life.
For them, the biggest strides often come from the small and calculated moves that they make on the day-to-day.
If you also want to reach the heights of sales success, change the lens through which you view life to zoom out and see the big picture.
You're not a simple salesperson closing deals, collecting money, and raising the bar. Instead, you're making an impact on the world by enabling your customers to enable others to improve their lives.
Bottom line: Take a step back and change the way you view life… Go from the small picture to the big picture.
You Have to Think Big to Get Big Results
This isn't the first time that we've talked about the importance of thinking big to get big results. But, it's so important that it's worth repeating over and over again.
The process of achieving big business and sales results goes like this: When you think big thoughts, you feel big, positive emotions. When you feel positive emotions, you take big actions that ultimately create big results.
Furthermore, all business and sales results are created by the thoughts you think!
If you've got big visions for success, then you need to replace small-minded thoughts with bigger ones.
For example, if you ever catch yourself thinking... 'I've got to play safe by staring small', immediately replace that thought with something like, 'I'm 100% capable of manifesting my grandest visions'.
Whether it be business, life, or both, you need to think big to get big results. Plain and simple.
Starting Big Picture and Then Working Backwards
The best way to bring your biggest visions to life is to break them down into smaller and smaller tasks.
Outline your vision in the B2B sales strategy and then figure out what it will take to bring it to life. Afterwards, break down each major task into smaller and smaller ones that will eventually add up to the big picture.
Never start thinking small with the hopes of making big moves to bring even bigger visions to life. Instead, think of the big picture and then work your way backwards!
Final Thoughts On What Successful B2B Sales Professionals Do Differently
You're the only person who can change the trajectory of your sales performance.
And the good news is that changing your trajectory isn't a matter of adopting some complicated formula or completely changing your entire sales approach.
Instead, it's a matter of making simple mindset and tactical shifts that'll make all the difference in your results. More specifically, the kind of shifts that will bring you up to the level of leading sales professionals.
The only thing at this point that is separating you from where you are now and where you want to be is action. Will you step up to the plate and become the person you know you're capable of being?