We are no longer in an era where b2b sales training means flying in an “expert sales trainer” across the country to teach sales teams how to sell effectively so that they and the business can grow.
Passive, lecture-style training is, undoubtedly, in the past.
On the other hand, it’s not to say that a pre-packaged style sales training course is the way to achieve sustainable learning, either.
These ready-to-use sales training courses may seem like a budget-friendly, easily scalable solution since they usually track trainee progress by measuring how many modules they complete and give automated feedback. Cost-effective and easy to execute? Yes. Will trainees retain any of that new information? Let’s be honest, probably not.
In fact, 80% of training is forgotten the next day. Time and budget wasted? Yes.
That is budget, and a whole lot of L&D leader's and sales team's time that is down the drain.
What’s in this article?
- What is a b2b sales training program?
- B2b sales training courses: What is effective?
- The best B2B sales training courses
- Up-skilling with AI
What is a b2b sales training program?
Before we get into what a b2b sales training is, lets firstly clarify what b2b sales is.
What is b2b sales?
B2b sales (or business to business sales) are transactions between 2 businesses, as opposed to a transaction done between a business and an individual consumer, ultimately for the consumer's personal use.
Discover what B2B sales is, and how it works.
Examples of well-known b2b companies include:
- Unity: A provider of real-time 3D creation capabilities that creators across industries can use to bring their visions to life.
- Toast: A platform designed to help other restaurants of all sizes to build great teams, improve revenue and boost operations so customer experiences.
- Miro: a collaborative, online whiteboard platform changing the way companies brainstorm and visualize ideas while setting a clear path for work.
Like all sales training programs, b2b sales training programs come in all different shapes, sizes, and costs, from a lecture-style in-person session, or a workshop, to virtual or live training courses. But one thing that they all have in common, is that their goal is to close the skill gaps in the sales reps and ultimately up-skill them so they are confident and ready to lead successful client interactions and close more deals.
With skills gaps becoming an increasingly important issue that is top of mind for many L&D leaders out there, it’s time for L&D leaders and managers to be proactive, and address those skill gaps in a sustainable manner.
To read more on addressing skill gaps, click here.
B2b sales training courses: What is effective?
Effective sales training is about understanding each customer’s varying pain points and how the product or service can solve that problem, or add value to their varying needs. No one client-to-sales rep conversation is the same as another, and inevitably, there is no one-size-fits-all sales training solution.
But there is a way to design a sales training program that can be tailored to your sales reps’ skill shortages, and there is a way to create a training environment that is immersive and keeps trainees engaged, that is cost-effective as well as scalable.
|Examples of B2B Sales Training Styles
Lecture-style training programs
|- Flying trainers in isn't sustainable (high Co2 emissions and costs for travel)
- Lecture information isn't retained due to a passive learning environment
- Not a scalable solution
E-learning training platforms
|- Trainee progress is simply measured by modules completed
- Feedback usually isn't tailored to the trainee
- Training isn't usually engaging or immersive
The best B2B sales training courses
Creating a world-class b2b sales training program demands concentrated efforts by L&D leaders and training managers, who need to understand the current state of their sales teams, define what their necessary core sales skills are, and then of course selecting the most fitting sales training program to train for those exact skills, tailoring it to company culture and values.
No matter what your company’s sales motion are, we've compiled a list of the core elements that are a prerequisite to any effective and sustainable sales training program.
Companies that offer the best B2B sales training solutions make sure that their sales training programs:
- Allow sales reps to train skills such as vital soft skills with personalized learning journeys.
- Measure results based on sales impact, rather than how many modules have been completed.
- Make sure their sales reps are continuously building on their skill sets (as opposed to annual training workshops than end in a few workshops).
- Are closely linked to their companies culture and values.
- Are not location based.
So what should you consider when deciding on what the best b2b sales training program is best for your company? Today we are seeing thousands of b2b sales training programs on the market, varying in cost and effectiveness. But one style stands out in terms of it's effectiveness regarding how immersive they are and sustainable.
Up-skilling with A.I. (artificial intelligence)
Gone are the day of wasting company budget on passive training that doesn't get absorbed. We live in an age where technology is more cognitively capable than ever, and needless to say, it's revolutionizing the training and learning space.
Despite the pitfalls of many lecture style training programs, as well as e-learning platforms, such as lack of interactivity and personalized feedback, A.I. powered training solutions are built with the goal of creating interactive learning environments that are scalable, even for global companies.
In fact, one of Germany's biggest automotive manufacturers, has switched to an A.I. video-simulation platform, Retorio, to scale up their sales training programs, as well as coach their sales teams. This company recognized their sales teams lacked some vital soft skills, and with this training platform, the automotive company can make sure all of their sales reps are equipped with the right skills, no matter where on the globe they are.
Want to learn more about how your B2B sales training can be taken to the next level with Retorio's AI training platform? Click the button below!
1. What are some b2b sales training topics?
When designing an effective b2b sales training program, L&D leaders and training managers should consider not only how the training should be executed, but also the content and topics that should be covered on a continual basis.
Some of these topics for b2b sales training may include: pipeline management, prospecting and outreach, qualifying leads, call planning, knowledge of competitor companies, dealing with objections and handling rejections, leading compassionate conversations that close deals.
2. What is a b2b sales certification?
A certification is a credential that you can earn through completing a training program or module, and is often what one can receive after the completion of a training program from an official organization.