As different as the print market segments are, the companies are just as differently positioned when it comes to consulting and selling print products. There are onliners and there are classic ways for field sales. The onliners try to make themselves interesting with SEO and SEA, while the old-school hard sellers rely more on cold calling by phone to fill the sales funnel. At the recent Online Print Symposium, there was a lot of talk about the customer journey. Ultimately, we all live off the customer buying. The customer has to be “picked up,” they say. The best way to do that is to know as much as possible about the customer. Regardless of whether they are tracked digitally or asked over the phone, no one can remember it, so a CRM system is created. The database for customer relationship management (CRM) doesn’t fill up by itself. Basically, I believe that demand-oriented problem solving is a better sales concept than using a watering can to stretch the budget. B2B online and B2B offline follow similar approaches here. You can certainly learn from each other. An interview by Marko Hanecke with Jannausch Dialogmarketing GmbH from Vlotho entitled “Collected advertising mail becomes a data treasure” came to mind again.
This is about all kinds of print products, i.e. self-mailers, mailings, postcards, brochures, catalogs, magazines, periodicals, inserts or Christmas cards. All tried-and-tested formats for advertisers and enablers for entry into the digital world. Jannausch has been around since 1982, when the company was founded by Karl Erich Jannausch. For 40 years, the company has been doing print market research, distributing its “value boxes” across Germany. The collectors put all the print products that land on their desks into the box. This has created a large network and an even larger treasure trove of information that, filtered, tells a user who, where, what needs and how and by whom it was made. Check, with the list, B2B sales can then get started.
Since 2018, the company has offered a tool for research. Earlier this year, it rolled out an update that runs in the browser. In a webinar, Jordi Jannausch presented some of the new smart features. Normally, the salesperson contacts new prospects with potential based on their addresses. Usually classified by industry, sales or employees. The classification leads to a high mismanagement. In this case, a part of the companies has no relevant print demand. A lot of research by the sales force is necessary. This drives up costs and demotivates employees. Often the cost of research is greater than the revenue from new business and is only covered by the orders received without sales effort.
The real competence of the salesperson is selling, not researching. We should let the sales representative sell, not laboriously search. Jannausch offers his tool with a database for quickly researching print needs or advertising activity. Targeted, the sales force can offer a solution for the customer’s needs. So, “It’s about your customer magazine, with 32 pages and the wonderful tiger motif on the cover.” That sounds more targeted and informed than, “Um yeah, we’re a printer and we can print high-quality brochures for cheap.” Which salesperson is more likely to be put through to the appropriate decision makers in the company?
Classifying print products is a major accomplishment and that’s where the value of the database is measured. Figures, data, facts, to illustrate: “We have around 130,000 active companies in our database with a total of half a million recorded activities. That’s roughly the knowledge of 6,000 field staff,” emphasizes Jordi Jannausch.
You can’t turn an analog thinker into a digitally oriented hippster, just as you can’t turn a plow horse into a racehorse. But you can learn from each other. If you understand that, you can be successful in transforming your entire business – from sales to delivery and invoicing. Good luck!