B2B success in 2020 relies heavily on customer-centricity, a reality that has driven companies to invest in improving their customer experience. We’re talking about investments like expanding research to better understand the customer mindset, adopting more robust technology used in data management and the delivery of the product or service, and perfecting customer service and care. Industries are taking notice and recently ranked Sales Development Representatives and Customer Success Specialists among the top 15 emerging jobs in the U.S. in 2020. Let’s take a look at why these roles are getting so much attention, and why they’re critical to the future of business around the world.
Sales Development Representatives (SDR) land at #7 on LinkedIn’s 2020 Emerging Jobs Report, which uses LinkedIn data to rank the fastest growing jobs across numerous industries. Companies are always looking for talented professionals to sell their products and services, but the B2B sales process continues to evolve and technology continues to advance at a very rapid pace. That’s why SDRs who are proficient in customer relationship management (CRM) systems, software-as-a-service (SaaS), cold calling, social selling, and lead generation are the most sought-after in the market today. SDRs are the ones responsible for researching, identifying, and nurturing prospects to close deals, which makes soft skills like collaboration, persuasion, and effective communication equally as important. Your SDRs establish the tone, build rapport, and create a great first impression with your prospects so of course, you want the best!
Once you earn the sale, customers are then transitioned to your customer success department. As the need to deliver a great customer experience grows, it’s no coincidence that the #6 emerging job on LinkedIn’s list is a Customer Success Specialist. The field has grown more than 34 percent since 2018, most of that tied to the technology sector. Similar to SDRs, the most talented customer success specialists have a blend of hard and soft skills, from being knowledgeable about the technology to having strong emotional intelligence, creativity, and adaptability. Customer success professionals are key to managing the customer experience, ensuring that each step in the buyer’s journey answers questions, resolves challenges, and delivers value.
Providing customers with the best possible experience depends on both of these roles working together. And of course, those whose needs are met and who are happy are more likely to stay and grow with the businesses that helped make them successful. Customer Success Specialists must consistently deliver value. One way to do that is to provide customers with additional product or service insight that will simplify tasks, grow market share, increase revenue, elevate customer satisfaction rates, and anticipate company challenges and opportunities. Remember that it is to retain existing accounts rather than acquire new customers. Staying in tune to what your customers need, want, and the obstacles to securing those things provides customers with a personalized experience that will show them how much you care about their business.
B2B economic models have also evolved to align with current customer expectations. The experience economy is also a subscription economy. Many services and products are sold as subscription pricing, where a small monthly fee provides companies with services under the terms of a pay-as-you-go relationship. Customers today are less interested to fully invest in a product or service requiring a long-term commitment with a larger cost. With subscriptions, companies must not only focus on enhancing their product or service, but also on continually improving the customer experience to maintain and expand the relationship over time. Raising the bar on customer experience benefits all parties. No matter which economic model your company employs, a customer’s purchase behavior is an indication of their level of satisfaction. Your customers are the lifeblood of your business – don’t jeopardize your relationships with them!