Grant Leboff, CEO at Sticky Marketing Club, author of 5 sales & marketing books and one of the U.K’s leading sales and marketing experts, talks about the importance of communication and collaboration between sales and marketing teams, his insightful views on improving the customer journey and his keynote presentation at the 7th Annual Chemicals Sales & Marketing Toolbox.
Being an author of 4 books (your 5th book will be published in January), what was the most challenging part of writing your books?
I love writing books and sharing, what I hope is, insightful and useful information with readers. The biggest challenge is writing the books in a way that makes the information easy to understand and enjoyable to read. I try and do all the work with the writing, so readers don’t have to exert too much effort to access the material.
Back in 2017, you mentioned in an interview that there’s a need for a “mind-shift” because of digitalization. As we know, the chemical industry is considered a conservative one, with lots of room for improvement. How can your keynote presentation help sales and marketing managers “shift” their minds towards the digital age?
That is an interesting question. It doesn’t matter in what sector you are working, today there are trends that cut across markets. For example, purchase journeys are increasingly migrating online. Attention is becoming ever more precious. It is harder to obtain a prospect’s attention today and more challenging to keep it.
Less phone calls are being made with more interactions taking place over email, messaging services and social platforms. These changes make it more important than ever for sales and marketing teams to communicate with each other and collaborate effectively. Salespeople are having to master new tools such as social platforms and video in order to stay relevant and effective. Meanwhile marketing teams have to be more aware of the purchase journey of their customers.
My presentation will assist delegates in seeing the world of sales and marketing through a different lens. It is this change in thinking which can lead to a ‘Mindshift’ and enable participants to become more effective.
In your book Digital Selling, you explain the reasons why traditional sales methods no longer apply. Tell us a bit about these methods, and can they be applicable in a big-scale industry such as the chemical industry?
There are so many reasons why traditional sales models need to change. Before the world wide web, within the business to business community, customers could not really take themselves through a purchase journey without the help of a salesperson. Consequently, salespeople got in front of prospects at the beginning of the sales cycle and had a large influence in guiding a prospect through it. Today, customers are empowered to access knowledge without getting any ‘business development’ personnel involved. This changes the whole value exchange between salesperson and prospect.
Today, in a world of customer empowerment salespeople need to understand how they add value through a purchase journey. Without being able to accomplish this, salespeople will find it increasingly difficult to get ‘face time’ with prospects and be seen as a trusted advisor. This is vital in any market sector.
What should participants of the 7th Annual Chemicals Sales and Marketing Toolbox expect from your keynote presentation?
From my keynote presentations participants will learn:
- Exactly why the sales and marketing environment has changed. Delegates will obtain real clarity in understanding the disruption that has taken place and what it means for them
- The actions salespeople need to undertake in order to stay relevant to prospects in 2020 and ensure they are effective in getting results
- How marketing can support sales efforts and take real advantage of the digital environment in which all businesses now operate