No matter how you look at it, people buy from other people.
In sales, the term Business-to-Business refers to transactions between two or more corporate entities (and their employees) interacting in a complex manner to exchange value. These transactions can appear impersonal, highly-technical, and lengthy.
Generally speaking, the term Business-to-Consumer refers to quick sales between a business (or its agents) and individual consumers in simpler interactions.
There is no question that there are differences between selling to a person who approaches a purchasing decision as a consumer and one who approaches on behalf of a business, but let's take a step back.
Regardless, people buy from other people. They don’t buy from Businesses. People make decisions based on relationships and all of the rational and irrational "baggage" associated with human interaction (trust, likability, prejudice, gut-feeling, etc.). Of course, brands and benefits inform decisions, but without foundational relationships, buyers go elsewhere. That's as old as the hills.
Sales professionals who Know and Grow their relationships with prospects and customers understand People-to-People selling. And, I think, practice the best kind of sales. Developing relationships with prospects and helping them make decisions is -- and always will be -- the best way to sell.
People-to-People selling means focusing on building relationships in order to help facilitate a customer’s buying decision.
People selling to people do things right…
- They ask questions.
- They focus on the prospect.
- They strive for win-win results.
- They take the time to learn what really needs to be accomplished.
My point is simple: Focus on the people you’re working with. Develop relationships. Ask questions. That’s the way to win.