We were inspired recently by a fascinating article in Harvard Business Review. Entitled “Sensemaking for Sales”, it reveals how the best sales reps use a “sensemaking” approach to support their B2B customers in making confident purchase decisions.

Our key takeaways:

  • A huge amount of accurate and trustworthy information exists online to support the purchase process. So much quality information, in fact, that it is impossible for buyers to make sense of it on their own. They need support in differentiating and simplifying the overwhelming amount of data available.
  • Sensemaking sellers share information that they have carefully curated for utility and clarity. They further clarify this information by helping customers to meaningfully interpret and simplify the material. Finally, they offer a framework for learning that makes customers feel in control – collaborating with them in the learning process, rather than telling them what to do.
  • Two measures of customer perception are critical for deal success: the customer’s decision confidence, and their trust in the seller. Both are proven to be boosted when a proactive and objective sales rep uses a sensemaking approach.
  • Sensemaking is tuned to address indecision and lack of confidence, emboldening customers to make higher-risk decisions. Sales professionals who can boost a customer’s self-confidence are therefore immensely valuable.
  • Sensemaking works. Some 80% of customers interacting with sensemaking reps completed high-quality, low-regret purchases, compared with less than 50% of customers whose reps used traditional approaches.

Read the article in full here: https://hbr.org/2022/01/sensemaking-for-sales