How to Sell High-Ticket B2B Services and Products

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B2B sales come with additional challenges compared to B2C sales. When trying to sell high-ticket B2B services and products, the challenges become more pronounced.

With a higher cost, buyers become more skeptical of sales pitches and salespeople. The buying process takes longer and requires more content.

Buyers need constant reassurance that your product or service can meet their specific needs. They want to ensure that they make the right choice and the fear of failure may keep them from following through with the sale.

If you struggle to convert leads for high-ticket services or products, use the following B2B marketing strategies.

Focus on High-Return Marketing Channels

Dozens of B2B channels exist for acquiring new leads. Instead of trying to cover all the bases, focus on the marketing channels that provide the greatest returns.

When you spread your marketing efforts across every available platform, you increase the demand for internal resources — time, labor, and money.

It costs more to utilize every channel, increases the complexity of your marketing strategies, and requires more time from your marketing team. You also run the risk of delivering mixed messages to potential customers as you’re more likely to be running multiple campaigns at any one time.

Focusing on the channels with the highest returns streamlines your efforts.

B2B sales have often relied on traditional media and marketing channels. Unfortunately, radio, television, and conferences or trade shows are no longer the top options for generating leads.

In the past couple of years, email marketing has become the preferred lead generation solution for B2B marketing.

Organic search, social media, paid search, and display advertising round out the top five marketing channels. These options all fall into the sphere of “digital marketing.”

68% of B2B decision-makers now prefer to perform their own research online, driving the shift from traditional media to digital channels.

These channels are also more cost-efficient and trackable compared to traditional channels. You receive a greater ROI with content marketing, email marketing, and SEO.

Identify the Concerns of Your Typical Customer

Throughout the entire buying process, the job of your marketing and sales teams is to eliminate doubt. If your sales leads have any concerns or fears related to the purchase, you need to know how to address them.

Start by identifying the potential concerns of your typical customer. Understanding what is holding a buyer back from completing the purchase helps you close the sale.

Some of the most common fears include:

  • Fear of making the wrong choice
  • Fear of making a change
  • And the fear of failure or negative results

The first fear is buyer’s remorse, especially for high-ticket B2B services or products. Buyers want to know that the product or service delivers on the features or claims made in the marketing material.

Unfortunately, most buyers do not trust salespeople to provide honest information. According to one study, only 35% of buyers have a favorable view of B2B salespeople.

B2B buyers also often have a fear of change as they do not want to disrupt the status quo. In most cases, if the B2B sales and marketing teams cannot provide compelling reasons to switch, the buyer chooses to play it safe.

Playing it safe also feeds into the next fear. Buyers often have a fear of failure. In fact, B2B buyers are more motivated by risk aversion compared to the opportunity to achieve positive results.

Ease Fears with Data and Customer Feedback

After identifying the concerns of your buyers, you can start easing their fears using effective content marketing strategies.

The content that you deliver to sales leads should include real examples with data and customer feedback. The best way to present this information is through case studies and customer testimonials.

Before making a high-priced purchase, buyers want to know more about the product or service. About 73% of B2B buyers look at case studies during the buying process.

One issue to watch out for when drafting a case study is data overload. Presenting too many details detracts from the purpose of the content.

Case studies provide a simple, straightforward example of the real value offered by your products or services. A typical format for a case study includes a problem, a solution, and the results.

You tell a story about a problem faced by an existing customer and how your product or service solved that problem. You then use data to offer concrete evidence and customer testimonials to offer peer evidence.

Showcasing real examples and customer input adds authenticity to your claims. This goes a long way toward relieving some of the fears of your potential buyers.

Establish Trust Through Educational Content

Along with case studies, your B2B marketing efforts should include additional content to aid the decision-making process. With each piece of content that a potential buyer digests, you establish a little more trust.

For high-ticket B2B sales, webinars and white papers remain incredibly effective. A webinar is often used at the start of the buyer’s journey. It is a useful tool for engaging with your target audience and establishing your company as an industry leader.

Webinars also provide the opportunity to offer live demonstrations. Whether you offer a physical product or software as a service, a demonstration gives potential buyers a closer look at how your offering really works. In the online world, this is the best alternative to a hands-on demonstration.

You can even give participants the opportunity to ask questions. The webinar provides a forum for discussing features with potential buyers earlier in the sales process.

White papers are also useful for high-ticket items as they give you the chance to go into more detail.

As mentioned, B2B buyers occasionally suffer from data overload. If you present them with too much information, they start to block it out.

While a white paper often covers complex issues or features, keep the information clear and concise. Do not assume that every reader understands industry jargon or technical terms.

Create a Premium Buying Process

If you want to sell a premium product, it helps to deliver a premium buying process. At every step of the buyer’s journey, focus on giving your leads five-star treatment.

Content, phone calls, websites, and other interactions should offer a superior experience compared to the competition. It becomes difficult to market an expensive item using an outdated landing page.

Essentially, you want to develop a “premium brand.” When B2B buyers visit your website or your booth at a trade show, they should immediately associate your brand with luxury or superiority.

Some B2B marketing experts believe that branding is not essential to the buying process. However, market research shows that strong B2B brands outsell weaker brands consistently.

In fact, the brand image may be more important for B2B buyers, especially when comparing premium products or services.

If you choose the wrong brand of socks, you can easily buy another pair. If you buy the wrong high-ticket B2B item, your business may suffer for several years.

A B2B brand represents the company’s values and position. Start with your company culture. Everyone needs to be on the same page when it comes to representing the company’s brand.

Make sure that marketers, salespeople, and anyone else involved in the marketing process understand the brand image that you want to present to buyers.

After developing the right culture, focus on consistency. Besides making sure that everyone understands the values of the brand, ensure that all marketing and sales material maintains a consistent image.

Develop Multiple Product or Service Packages

When you present potential buyers with a single option, they can only compare the price to your competition. Instead of offering a single product or service, consider developing it into multiple packages.

The lowest-tier package is your standard offering. The higher-tier options provide upgrades or additional features or services.

Decision-makers are more willing to pay premium prices for the perceived value of a “top-tier” package. This is a simple B2B marketing technique that helps create a high-end version of any product or service.

Additionally, some buyers only buy top-of-the-line products. If you give these individuals three pricing options, they almost always select the priciest solution.

Tiered pricing creates the illusion of maximized value with customers selecting the option that already matches the price they prefer.

This solution is also a form of vertical product differentiation. You create multiple variations at different price points. Besides the advantages discussed, this increases the variety of choices and widens your customer base.

Deliver Better Results Compared to Your Competition

These B2B marketing strategies should help nurture sales leads and acquire new customers. However, the key to selling high-ticket B2B services and products is offering a far better option compared to your competitors.

At the end of the day, decision-makers tend to select products or services based on the company offering them.

To successfully market high-ticket B2B items, build your strategies around quality offerings and customer service.

If you exceed expectations, you increase customer loyalty, which leads to greater retention rates and more referrals. The positive feedback that you receive also reassures potential buyers, aiding the buying process.

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Austin Cline is the founder and CEO of ASUN Digital. He frequently writes about brand strategy and digital marketing with expertise in B2B marketing. He has served as a senior director of marketing and director of digital and web for previous marketing agencies and has over 10 years of marketing experience. You can follow him on Twitter at @_austincline or connect with him on LinkedIn by visiting his profile.