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INSIGHTS

Good Data vs Right Data

by Ben Barton / June 30, 2021

We all know by now the value of data in the modern business world, especially when it comes to sales. With the abundance of reporting tools and analytics software and performance metrics, accessing data should not be a problem for any organisation.

The prevailing question has, for a long time, been about ensuring you have good data. Following the data to insight to action pipeline, bad data will produce bad insights which will drive bad actions. Reverse engineering the process will of course mean that to drive good actions, you need good insight which can only come from good data.

However, there is an important shift that is beginning to take place around the data discussion as it pertains to sales, and especially high value sales; the data might be good, but is it right? 

This is the key differentiator in so many areas of sales, from closing deals all the way down to the hiring process.

 

Good data is about accuracy. Right data is about relevance.

Gartner research shows an alarming statistic for sellers – when considering a purchase, B2B buyers spend a mere 17% of their time meeting with potential suppliers; when meeting multiple suppliers, sellers could be present for as little as 5% of a buyer’s cycle.

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Sellers are meeting buyers later and later in the sales cycle, and are getting less time than ever to make a positive impact in the process. The role of the seller has shifted, and so too has the skillset and toolset a high-performing seller needs to be able to leverage.

Historically, the success of a seller hinged upon the intangible concept of ‘the gift of the gab’, that innate and elusive mix of charisma and persuasiveness. The continued trends we’re seeing among buyer behaviours, however, place far greater emphasis on the seller’s ability to read and analyse data, and take effective action off the back of that analysis.

This, again, drives home the need for the right data. The information you’re giving your sellers can be as accurate as you like, but if it’s not relevant to their deals, then it serves as little more than a distraction; clutter in the pipeline, so to speak.

The same goes for the conversations between sellers and buyers. With such a small (and shrinking) window to impact the decision-making process, it’s critical that sellers provide buyers with the right information, at the right time, and in the right way.

 

High value selling raises the stakes, and therefore the importance of right data

When we step into the world of high value sales and big-ticket deals, the stakes are raised significantly. More stakeholders are involved in the buying cycle than ever before, lending yet more weight on the brief moments a seller has to influence the purchase.

Ensuring that your sellers have the right data, and that they know how to use that data, is a critical building block for every sale, but especially for high value sales.

More Gartner research has found that customers who perceived the information they received from sellers to be helpful in advancing across their buying jobs were 2.8 times more likely to experience a high degree of purchase ease, and three times more likely to buy a bigger deal with less regret.

As I mentioned earlier, the primary role for the seller has shifted – it’s less about selling the product to the buyer, and far more about providing the buyer with the right information, at the right time, in the right way.

This means that the skills the seller needs to possess and the tools they need to be able to leverage have changed as well – a change that has to be covered effectively and efficiently by sales managers, and the organisation at large.

You need to be able to equip your sellers with the right data, but you also need to provide them with the sales training and continuous coaching to analyse that data, and know the right actions to take.

Mentor Group are proud to boast a wealth of experience and expertise in sales training, coaching and high value selling. Get in touch with us today to see how we can help your sales teams sell more often, for more money, faster than ever before.

You can also learn more about Mentor Group's turnkey sales training solution, the Sales Academy, by watching the video below.

 

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Ben Barton

Ben Barton

Using words to inform, persuade and entertain. From Travel Safety to the NFL, I write about anything and everything. Except for golf.