Bridget Gleason is VP of Sales for Logz.io and my regular partner on Front Line Fridays.
Bridget, a.k.a., Captain Fantastic (for her fantastic attitude), is waiting for her staff to bring up her new name after last week’s episode airs. Andy has his own ‘superpower,’ which helps him in the NY summers.
The topic is the future of selling. Salespeople are not going away. Our species has a poor record of forecasting, but we know AI tech, machine learning, and bots are inevitably moving into sales. They are improving. There will be impact.
The tech is currently about the sellers. The customer derives no direct value. The tech tools should help the customer accomplish their goal to make a good decision ASAP.
Presently, the process is missing opportunities to assist the customer. The interaction with the customer is still strictly up to the salesperson. The future of selling is about becoming more human, with more free time for the customer.
Information is given to the salesperson. What they do with it determines their success. The customer expects an engagement, not a process. A well-run sales process should be in service to the salesperson/customer interaction.
Logz.io just won a major enterprise customer, who actually makes a competing product. They cited a reason: the relationship. They needed a vendor who was extremely customer-focused, to act as a partner. They trust Logz.io.
Andy shares a similar story of when he sold a product to a competing huge enterprise customer. They trusted Andy and his company, because they delivered excellence.
Given Bridget’s example, would AI enhance the experience three years down the road? It is hoped that better information will deliver better qualification, and guidance to respond to customer signals.
All will have access to AI tech. So all will have the same edge. The quality of the human interaction will make the difference. Logz.io trains with a leaning toward the personal. The large deal was won with a ‘Proof of Relationship.’
The relationship is more important than the concept. The buyer can go to review sites to get the concept. They can only see the relationship in the rep. A sales relationship is about trust and positive neutrality, not about friendship.
The trust is based on performing within that relationship. There is no deal without trust. Logz.io was very glad to get this deal, and they worked hard to get it.
If, one day, you are not there for the customer, they will look for someone else.