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Sales 4.0 – The new normal?!

Expert: Dipl.-Kfm. (FH) Martin Pötter

In the course of the pandemic at the latest, digitization “hit” many companies, especially in sales. Traditional industries in particular, which are and in some cases remain very analog in their core services, were caught cold. Overnight, traditional sales, which had been quite successful, were virtually dead and digital alternatives had to be found. In some cases, attempts were made to meet the demands of the pandemic in traditional sales and consulting through video conferencing. However, Sales 4.0 goes much further. Read here whether Sales 4.0 is here to stay, how the trend came about and what role analog processes can still play in your own company.

Why are new service level requirements emerging?

A very analog question that is often not even asked or posed in the digital world. Do I need my groceries delivered to my door in 10 minutes or my drinks in 60 to 90 minutes? Most of the time, no. But speed and integration into one’s own increasingly digital communication and shopping behavior (mobile/apps) are now consumers’ own positive values. With everyone? No, not quite yet. But increasingly so. Not to say rapidly increasing.

Marketing analog services in the digital world

Delivering an analog service can take weeks, months or even years? No problem (as long as your competition isn’t faster). But in the digital world, everything is basically a form of e-commerce. The quote must be able to be created or triggered online, accessed, changed. Order placement must be possible online. The order status and status changes must be available to the customer online at all times. Not to mention delivery dates and shipping notifications with tracking options. It goes without saying that the invoice must also be digital.

How-to Sales 4.0 – Making processes transparent for the customer

Ultimately, digital added value must be available, recognizable and “instant” and available anytime and anywhere, if already product or service last. Basically, we need a kind of e-commerce solution à la Amazon or Message in a Bottle for everything and anything. With 24/7 access and complete possibilities for the customer. Whatever is possible must be triggered by him and immediately observed by him. An “edit” during office hours by a clerk is counterproductive here.

Ideally, your internal processes should already be digitalized and geared to this. Otherwise, the current digitization and the associated scaling will not work. The Champions League is out there in the digital world. Unfortunately, you can’t start slowly and learn and gain experience first, as nice as that would be.

Think from the customer’s point of view

Don’t make the mistake of extrapolating from yourself to others. I often catch myself and also accompanied entrepreneurs asking the question of why or the question of benefit. But from your own point of view. The question is only asked by those who do not see the benefit or evaluate it differently. Your target group may see it quite differently than you do. Especially if possibly a competitor in your market segment starts doing so. Or even worse, someone from another market segment that you didn’t have on your list in the first place.

Where do you and your company stand?

Is digitization of processes already in full swing or are you just thinking about it? Unfortunately, the Internet and the interconnectedness of the world don’t care. It’s just going on and on. With breathtaking speed, changes, innovations and further developments are coming at us, the basics or predecessors of which we had not even understood and/or implemented yet, there they are already outdated again.

F&P as your contact for Sales 4.0

You are looking for contact persons for the digitalization of your sales and your company processes? Our F&P consultants and interim managers are at your disposal to develop concepts or implement them directly in your company. We would be happy to provide you with non-binding feedback on your project.

Dipl.-Kfm. (FH) Martin Pötter

Associate Partner

+49 179 3985621 poetter@fup-ag.com

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