Blog/These decisions are sales-killers for B2B companies

All founders think their companies are the bomb – but sometimes harsh reality hits home, and hits hard. You’ve created something great, but no eager clients are knocking at your door to buy!

I’ve been talking to a lot of entrepreneurs lately – and even when we don’t intentionally do it, we always end up talking about sales. Scratch that – problems with sales, to be precise.

These problems usually come from bad decisions, and those stem from a lack of clear direction. You focus on everything else and in the meantime you forget that sales should be your main concern.

Because of that it’s easy to get biased and make wrong decisions. So the question I want to answer for you is –

What bad decisions regarding sales do B2B founders often make?

Many founders want to build a business, but are prejudiced against sales. And you won’t make good decisions with that attitude!

That’s why first I want to share a rough truth – if you want your company to win and become a great business, you need to be prepared to fight tooth and claw for it.

Meaning – you need a clear goal, gameplan, and persistence to keep fighting. When you’re missing either of those, there’s a big risk that you’ll make one of these poor decisons:

SELLING TOO LATE
You’re not ready to start serious sales, right? The workflow isn’t perfect, there are still a few loose ends in development, you don’t even have sales reps!

But sales are the only way to validate your business idea. Your company will never be perfect though – and sales are the fuel to develop a better product, service, get market feedback and have better chances at getting funded.

You’d be surprised how basic the first versions of your favorite products were!

But they hit the market – and only being validated with succesful sales meant they were worth working on further.

The magic moment when you become “ready to sell” will never come – waiting for it is the worst bias that a founder can have. A better decision? Find the quickest way to put your business solution on the market and see if people can be convinced to buy it.

ONE MARKETING CHANNEL
Using one channel (like cold-calling, content marketing, SEO, paid ads, cold mailing) to acquire new clients is a trap. At first it seems like a good idea…

But all channels perform with varying results. And sometimes they just stop performing at all until you improve your strategy of using them.

It’s easy to imagine how painful it is when your only channel stops working for you!

In as little words as possible – when you have a good, multichannel strategy then you can afford to wait for some clients to decide, because you have others willing to close deals faster.

And if you’re addicted to one channel – you’re going to hit a wall at some point when you won’t be acquiring new clients, and you’ll have no support lines to keep your business from failing.

STAYING ON ONE MARKET
These days you can choose the best clients from multiple markets on a global scale, and for most companies it’s a necessity – not a novelty.

Competition in B2B is tough – and when you stay on one market, you’re working both against competitors, and against the ever decreasing number of clients that will buy from you.

It’s easy to overestimate how good a market is. And without expanding, at some point you’ll still be doing everything right – but your market will stop responding.

Whereas in the meantime, you could’ve been crawling your way up multiple new markets to keep new clients coming in.

FOUNDER NOT DOING SALES
You’re shy, you’re not good with people, you don’t like showing up at events or messaging people online… so you avoid doing sales yourself alltogether. You have to stop making excuses and just get to work.

If you’re not determined, if you don’t hustle and put 100% of your effort into making your business work, you’ll miss out on the rich benefits of sales – direct, instant customer feedback and huge insights into who your ideal customers should be.

I’m not saying you should always be doing active sales – though that goes without saying for early-stage founders, but your operational involvement in sales should decrease and be almost none when your company is already a prosperous machine with 100+ people on board.

It’s about focus – what I’m saying is, if you don’t treat sales as a priority, you’ll mess them up. I’ve said this before, I’ll say it again – sales is the lifeblood of business, treat it like that.

If you’re having these troubles (or others that I didn’t mention) in B2B sales, please write to me at piotr.zaniewicz@gmail.com. It’ll help my research of the B2B Sales landscape, and you will get advice that will help you push forward. 🙂

Summary

There are 4 problems that haunt B2B company founders far & wide:

  • SELLING TOO LATE
  • ONE MARKETING CHANNEL
  • STAYING ON ONE MARKET
  • FOUNDER NOT DOING SALES
.

You should never forget how important sales are – they’re the only thing that keeps your company running.

Like I said at the beginning, poor decisions come from lack of clear direction. If you’re still not sure what that direction is, let me clear it up for you:

LOOK FOR CLIENTS THAT WILL PAY YOU → CLOSE DEALS WITH THEM → REPEAT WITH 3X INTENSITY.