Fresh new SalesFuel “Voice of the Buyer” Study reveals radically different sales and marketing approaches needed to make the sale.
If you’re trying to sell to Generation Z buyers, new data shows they have a radically different mindset from millennials and all buyers overall, requiring businesses and sales professionals to adjust tactics to close the deal. The fresh new data is from SalesFuel®, which provides sales teams with the power to Sell Smarter®, and comes out of its new Voice of the Buyer Study.
Gen Z are those born between 1997 and 2015, which puts them at 6–24 years of age, making them the latest wave of consumers in the marketplace. As a reminder, millennials have birth years from 1981 to 1996, with their oldest buyers turning 40 this year.
SalesFuel’s new findings indicate the buying approach couldn’t be more different between these groups.
Want credibility with a Gen Z buyer? Fire up your social media posts and ignore your LinkedIn profile! LinkedIn profile importance in checking out sales professionals took a huge drop from millennials to Gen Z, from 36% to 25%. Yet researching a salesperson via social media is at 33% with Gen Z for vetting. That’s 10% higher than for millennials.
And while best practices for good sales professionals means making sure they “understand the space” of who they’re selling to, Gen Z doesn’t seem all that impressed. Only 21% say primary research to their business is important when a salesperson approaches them with a pitch. Instead, the survey shows they want insights into the product and service and how it helps them.
“Gen Z buyers want to get down to business and discuss price on the first contact with the salesperson, ” says C. Lee Smith, CEO at SalesFuel, author of SalesCred: How Buyers Qualify Sellers and a thought leader on sales credibility. “This is a challenge for today’s salesperson because most have been trained not to reveal price until they’ve proved value to the buyer or gone through their extensive discovery process. Changes to existing selling processes must be made to benefit Gen Z buyers. Conversely, Gen Z buyers need to realize not only on the value of the product, but also the value of the salesperson.”
So how can you win over Gen Z buyers? Emphasize you can solve their problems , saving them time and money and boosting efficiency. The data shows they’re more likely to search for help in a solution and that’s a sales opportunity. Only 30% of Gen Zers say before reaching out, they’ve tried to solve the problem themselves. In contrast, 39% of millennials are self-sufficient.
Finally, the Voice of the Buyer Study reveals that high service levels and superior customer service appear to take a back seat when selling to Gen Z. Only 24% are willing to pay a premium for that, a large drop from 31% of millennials. This means sales professionals will have to emphasize other features and value-adds to make the sale. Or it may come down to price alone.
In March 2021, SalesFuel conducted its Voice of the Buyer study. Our research team used an online survey to ask 1,330 respondents the questions salespeople and sales managers want answers to in order to understand how to be effective in their part of the buying process. The sample consisted of self-reported CEOs, other C‑level executives, or purchasing agents of B2B companies with between 20 and 500 employees in the United States.
The purpose of this study was to understand the products and services these decision makers intend to purchase in the next year. We also sought to understand how purchase decisions are made in these organizations. The insights our analysts gained will allow us to help sales professionals hone their methodology and tactics for optimal outcomes when they sell to small businesses.
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