Why You Need to Be a Needs-Based B2B Salesperson

Being a salesperson isn’t just about knowing the ins and outs of your product. You may have all the answers to commonly asked questions and have no problem pitching your product, but your value proposition only goes so far. In order to be successful, you have to be able to identify the needs of each potential customer.

A needs-based salesperson is the gateway between brands and consumers. With 30 percent of the workforce now made up of millennials, it’s important to understand how sales are changing from both a professional and consumer’s standpoint.

When you learn how to tap into your customer’s needs, you can become an invaluable asset to your company. You may feel like everyone prefers the web when it comes to closing a deal, but statistics say otherwise. When people are making a large purchase, which is usually the case with B2B marketing, they want evidence that this is the right choice.

That evidence comes from the assurance and demonstration of a real salesperson. A website or app can only present a list of facts; a salesperson is dynamic and fluid, capable of adjusting their approach and providing the best resources for each specific client. If you want to up your sales game and transform the way you connect with clients, here are three tips to becoming a needs-based salesperson.

Don’t be afraid to go off-script

One of the reasons salespeople are so valuable is that they are able to provide a personalized touch to the marketing process. While it’s good to have a general pitch in mind when presenting a product, a needs-based approach to marketing encourages you to go off-script.

Salespeople need to ask questions that encourage well-thought-out answers from your client instead of just a yes or no response. This opens the door to conversation, which creates connections and leads to a greater chance of conversion. Demonstrate your own interest in the client’s needs, then show them how your product can offer a solution.

Focus on education instead of information

Anyone can give a spiel about their product, but a generic rundown of its main features and general uses won’t win over a client. From a needs-based approach, the client’s unique likes, dislikes and problems are evaluated. They will be given a new perspective on their own issue through the lens of your product. Don’t just talk about what your business can do for a customer – show them why it matters.

Utilize digital media

Pamphlets and business cards are a thing of the past. Potential customers like to have real facts and figure presented to them authentically. In order to succeed in needs-based sales, you have to be transparent. It’s a balance between show and tell that will leave a lasting impression in a customer’s mind and encourage them to explore further.

Lead generation, not just conversion, plays a big role in the B2B marketing industry nowadays. If you’re able to combine your brand’s social media and digital assets in your presentation, you can demonstrate a sense of brand awareness and continuity that reassures clients you’re on top of your game.

Remember that sales is another form of customer service

In many ways, a salesperson and customer service rep share the same job. You have to troubleshoot problems, provide solutions and connect with a consumer in order to deliver personalized care that achieves a desired result.

A needs-based salesperson humanizes the marketing experience; when you focus on value and connection over features and profit, you can stop selling yourself short and start to show consumers what your brand is really all about.


Kevin Gardner graduated with a BS in Computer Science and an MBA from UCLA. He works as a business consultant for InnovateBTS where he helps companies integrate technology to improve performance. He shares his knowledge and expertise not only with his clients but with his fellow bloggers and readers.
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