The Power of Relationships: Trust and Storytelling
Today I’d like to touch on two topics for those that are in business-to-business sales and services. The power of the relationship that you have with your prospects & customer and the need to story tell to be able to get across the value of the services that you offer.
So in terms of relationships built on trust, this can be broken down into an equation using a “trusted advisor” framework, a recognised system of measuring trust. The power of trust and the relationships you have is really powerful. A businesses can copy your services, they can copy your products, but they can’t copy the relationships that you have.
It’s these relationships that define your business and provide the competitive differentiation that no other brand can copy. It makes you unique.
In the same way that business to consumer is about the end person making a purchasing decision, its no different for business to business. You’re still selling to and helping an individual make a decision for their business.
The “trusted advisor” framework defines trust as an equation;
Intimacy is a bit of a strange phrase to have for a business to business context, but what it refers to is an approach or attitude based on doing what is in the best interest of the person that you’re trying to help, rather than yourself.
The trusted advisor equation reduces trust when there is high self orientation i.e. what’s in this for me. We’ve all been in that situation where somebody is trying to sell to us or at us because it’s about what they want and what they need, rather than somebody who’s helping us make a purchase through a more consultative approach.
By focusing on those key areas and building the trust and therefore the relationships that comes with that, maximise your ability to reach a sales conclusion. Maintaining those relationships over time will be much enhanced and beneficial commercially to the business.
To help do that, the second point is all about storytelling.
I’ve had the fortune of being able to work across a mix of marketing companies including; a marketing automation company (a vendor providing SaaS services) marketing agencies as well as client side. It’s given me a unique perspective across all sides of these discussions and delivery.
As a client having sat through numerous vendor and agency presentations, the greatest success that comes from these negotiations is an ability to paint and tell a story about how your service or your provision would help me as an individual, as well as my company.
What I mean is clearly and simply being able to articulate an understanding of my requirements, explaining the user cases, explaining what I would use your service for and how that will benefit me and the business.
If you can tell that story it becomes relevant and it becomes meaningful rather than a more generic approach that says ‘here’s the products we’ve got, here’s the services that we offer and would they be helpful to you?’ Not taking that extra effort and the extra attention to make it relevant to me, my circumstances and my needs means that your making me do the hard work of working out the benefit (if there is some.)
That ability to be able to really understand who your audience is and what they need is really what differentiates you in a sales and customer success environment.
Create credibility, build on trust, build your relationships. Its power is that nobody can copy the relationships that you have with your prospects and your customers. Enable those sales and that future success through fantastic storytelling of how your services and your products can help. Making it absolutely relevant to them as individuals and their business.
If we can help in any way in terms of your marketing strategy, your marketing delivery or your marketing training then please do get in contact.
Owner of Twist Consultancy
Helping businesses better connect to people through relevant and targeted marketing.