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The shift to less face-to-face interaction with customers and prospects isn’t a 2020 development. Buyers have increasingly embraced completing their own research for years. A Sales Benchmark Index survey from 2017 reported that in nearly 75% of sales situations, customers prefer not to meet in person. Though many field sales reps are already accustomed to using web meetings or phone calls to navigate some of the sales process, what is new for a large percentage of sellers is 100% reliability on virtual interaction to sell. And there are some industries that still rely on printed catalogs and handshakes to close deals — "knuckle and hand kinds of businesses" as one source we spoke with calls them. What does it mean for B2B sales managers as they strategize for 2021? Is it necessary to train sales reps on new skills? What components of an existing sales process transfer well to virtual interactions? What should sales kickoffs look like?   Download this Focus Report to learn more.
The world is emerging from COVID lockdowns, but employees continue to operate differently than they ever used to. Managers are challenged with improving their team’s performance and maintaining a positive workplace culture while most continue to work remotely. Our new report on managing for improved workplace performance addresses issues that are critical to managers of sales and non-sales teams alike. We look at: The future of incentive travel, a key component of many sales managers’ motivation efforts How the pandemic year changed employee recognition Why 2021 requires a new type of sales management Our cover story features insights on motivation and making work matter from Michael Patrick F. Smith, a playwright and musician who worked for a year in the oil fields of North Dakota to test himself and exorcise some demons from his past. Smith has written a book about his experience, and it’s surprising how many of the lessons that he took away from his year toiling as an oil field "swamper" are applicable to managers who work in a completely different environment.
The pandemic year has businesses focusing on reaching the right prospects with the right message through the right medium. This Focus Report takes a closer look at companies’ digital marketing transformation. Learn why experts we spoke with say it’s more than just buying digital tools, it’s rethinking the way you’re working. The report includes: Forrester’s survey on what marketing technology companies are investing in Marketing’s expanding role in the sales process Why TikTok is a viable channel for B2B marketing Selling directly without ruining channel partner relationships Breathing new life into virtual events Download this Focus Report to learn more.
As companies implement long-term or even permanent WFH policies, managers need to consider how to keep remote workers on track, recognize accomplishments and maintain a strong corporate culture. Our new special report takes a closer look at managing for peak performance in a remote world. We look at what changes managers have made during 2020 and why companies may want to think twice before shifting to permanent remote teams.
Our collection of stories looks at how managers can help employees cope with the anxiety, stress and other challenges that come with the extended WFH world.
COVID-19 has upended B2B commerce. Customers are asking for price cuts, flexible payments and freebies. Those businesses facing a significant downturn are pressured to be as accommodating as possible. Is a price cut the right move? What is the long tail of this immediate challenge?
Is the officeless world inevitable or overblown? That may yet be determined, but managers should be adjusting to the work-from-home trend whether it’s temporary or permanent, and no matter if it’s for part of their team or companywide. Valuable lessons have already emerged from the few months that nearly everyone who is still working has been doing so remotely. Our special report covers these important topics: How companies are building corporate culture when teams are not together Tackling low morale among remote workers (It’s more prevalent than many realize) Fostering creativity from afar What jobs are best suited to remote offices
COVID-19 has caused managers to rethink everything from recruiting and onboarding to client interaction and go-to-market strategies. We look at what being "digital ready" requires and why some pandemic-induced changes are likely permanent. Other topics: How the best sellers can help their customers thrive 6 steps to adapt to the new economic reality Preparing to fire up the revenue engine post-COVID
As businesses settle into a completely remote work world, managers are wrestling with how to keep their teams engaged, motivated and productive. Leading with honesty, openness and empathy are more important than ever. "Everyone will remember how their boss responded during this time. Did they focus on you at a human level?" said one workplace consultant. Other topics: Futures, not foosball, get workers excited How top-performing companies use incentives
In March 2020, business as usual ceased to exist. Our first report on managing during a pandemic includes insights on how to lead in uncertain times and whether selling during a global crisis is even a good idea. Other topics: Tips for better virtual meetings Marketing agility during a crisis How subscription models can help companies weather tough times
An MIT Sloan School of Management study shows that companies with technologically savvy leadership perform better in terms of revenue growth and profitability than those whose leaders lag in technological know-how. Yet only 17% of C-suite leadership at nearly 2,000 companies surveyed are digitally savvy. The new Focus Report from Sales & Marketing Management looks closely at what this means for overall performance and how B2B companies can improve their digital savviness at the top.
Many companies profess to make coaching and skills training a priority, but how many actually do? A recent State of Sales Coaching report indicates there is more preaching than teaching occurring in B2B sales environments. That’s a dangerous trend in a time when The Wall Street Journal reports that companies are struggling to fill sales roles. This focus report explores what a coachable culture is and how to get there if you’re not already. Other articles include: How to Scale Your Coaching Capabilities With AI 3 Steps to More Effective Virtual Coaching Coaching for Stronger Teams In a Hybrid Environment
Workers are quitting their jobs at some of the highest rates in years. Those employees who do stay mostly still work from home, presenting little face time with managers and colleagues. Cash bonuses go toward daily bills and are soon forgotten. Recognizing and rewarding employees, channel partners and other business associates has never been more important. Our Ultimate Guide to Non-Cash Incentives features:   Dozens of non-cash recognition ideas from name brand merchandise, gift card and experience providers Valuable insights on recognition trends, including a look at travel rewards in this uncertain time Industry research to help set realistic expectations for incentive and brand loyalty campaigns
Some aspect of meeting virtually is here to stay, but B2B sales and marketing professionals are eager to return to trade show environments and live marketing events. In-person events produce stronger leads, present opportunities for unplanned encounters and provide a means to build trust in a way that cannot be duplicated virtually. This Focus Report explores why businesses are ready to return to exhibit halls and what these events in a post-pandemic world will look like. With an understanding that hybrid is here to stay, we learn from experts how to make it work with trade show and marketing efforts.
Shifts that occurred during the pandemic and that continue to change the work world have made managing and motivating teams more challenging than ever. Here’s how to keep employees positive, productive and performing at high levels.  
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