How to get your sales team to embrace data analytics

Buying shiny (and expensive) new tools won’t do much good if no one trusts them, says McKinsey’s Sebastian Kerkhoff.

by Sebastian Kerkhoff

It’s been nearly 15 years since “big data” broke into the business lexicon. But only recently has the B2B sales world started to appreciate the scale of the benefits data-driven sales can deliver, from prioritising leads to enhancing existing relationships with customers, by offering the right product at the right time for the optimal price.

Analytics isn’t likely to identify a whole new way to do business; rather, it will provide insights and opportunities to sell more and do so more efficiently. Here are five critical lessons to ensure big data serves your business’s needs:

1. Focus on clear business objectives—and ignore shiny objects

We’ve seen it time and again: too many sales organisations start their analytics implementation by asking what tools they’re going to use. Instead, companies need to keep their eye on the fundamentals of the business and what problems stand in the way. 

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