Corporate Visions Survey Finds Only Half of Salespeople Feel Prepared to Create New Sales Opportunities

July 15, 2014

New Report Uncovers Lack of Preparedness Among Sales Teams and Key Sources of Tension During the Buying Cycle

LARKSPUR, Calif. – July 15, 2014 – Corporate Visions, Inc., the leading marketing and sales messaging, tools and training company, today announced survey results reflecting the responses of more than 700 business-to-business (B2B) marketers and salespeople from around the world regarding their level of confidence when it comes to having key customer conversations. The findings showed a disconnect between where salespeople feel pressure and how well their companies prepare them for these critical conversations.

In one example, nearly 40 percent of respondents identified “opportunity creation” conversations as having the highest impact on helping salespeople achieve quota, but only half feel adequately prepared to create new sales opportunities with the content and training provided to them by their organizations.

Ironically, salespeople say they feel most adequately prepared for the conversations they value least:

  • Showcasing compelling product presentations – 63 percent feel prepared/13 percent value most
  • Achieving successful competitive differentiation – 54 percent feel prepared/14 percent value most

After the opportunity creation conversation, salespeople ranked having effective executive conversations as the next most integral factor to helping them achieve quota. The entire list of conversations rankings looked like this:

  • Creating opportunities from status quo – 38 percent
  • Having effective executive conversations – 16 percent
  • Achieving successful competitive differentiation – 14 percent
  • Showcasing compelling product presentations – 13 percent
  • Demonstrating financial justification – 10 percent
  • Mastering purchasing negotiations – 9 percent

When asked what causes the greatest amount of pressure for sales reps, respondents indicated that they experienced the most tension during the following conversations:

  • Demonstrating financial justification – 26 percent
  • Mastering purchasing negotiations – 25 percent
  • Having effective executive conversations – 24 percent

“It’s no surprise that salespeople feel most confident in their product presentation skills, since that’s where the majority of companies focus their training initiatives. What is surprising, however, is how grossly unprepared reps are when it comes to having the three most critical conversations in the customer buying cycle,” said Tim Riesterer, chief strategy and marketing officer for Corporate Visions. “In order to be truly successful, companies need to provide their reps with the right messaging, tools and training skills so they can move prospects off the status quo, have effective executive-level conversations, provide financial justification for what they’re selling and negotiate a price that ensures maximum investment.”

About Corporate Visions, Inc.

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