Live from Dreamforce, Day 2: Embracing the Future

Interesting observational research moment today during my session at Dreamforce. In a room full of 400 sales professionals, I made the case that there is no more B2B or B2C and that all selling was B2All. I stated that “the way I buy shoes, is the same way I buy $1 million dollar telecom equipment for my business.”

There was a visceral reaction. People in the audience older than me, (let’s call them 50+) shook their heads in disagreement. People in the audience younger than me smiled and nodded enthusiastically. After the session ended I had the same responses as I spoke to people.

“No way that is happening” exclaimed one (older than me) man.

“Happens all the time to us” argued back a team of ladies who could not have been more than 30.

Here is why this is important. Your buyers are getting younger, more technically savvy and sellers are catering to their buying preferences quickly. The younger buyers get, the more this trend of B2All will become pronounced because this is the way the new generation of buyers prefer to buy.

You can’t control the fact that the buying landscape has changed, or is changing. And you can’t argue with the fact that what matters is what your buyers think, and how they act in your market. So be honest with yourself. Maybe you are working in a market where all buyers don’t buy this way yet, but for how long will this continue?

Either I am right now, and you are experiencing this B2All buying process, or, I will be right in a few years and you will start to experience this buying process. Either way, you have to embrace it now and stay ahead of the curve. Ignoring the way your buyers are buying now, and the way they will be buying in the near future, will only create sales extinction.