How your organization approaches sustainability can have some major effects on your sales results. This is especially true now that millennials and Gen Z are coming into purchasing roles, and bring their environmental concerns into their buying processes.
At risk of repeating the obvious, there is a huge need to work toward a more sustainable future. After all, we want all places on earth to be habitable and wonderful for a long, long time, and then we need to work together to keep our emissions down, use renewable energy and live more sustainably overall.
This is, however, not the only argument that can be made for working actively with sustainability as an organization. Another is the financial aspect – not only can you save a ton of costs by, for example, cutting the number of business trips you make and have more remote interactions, but buyers may also be more inclined to purchase from an organization that prioritize sustainability. Especially now that millennials are coming into buyer positions and are becoming the most prominent decision makers in their organizations.
Sustainability can affect buying decisions
This was recently underlined by a Forrester study (comissioned by Outreach). Millennials are, quite simply, a force to be reckoned with and currently hold the most power when it comes to B2B purchasing decisions. This is an important change, especially if we also consider that Gen Z are coming into the workforce and are currently holding some 25 % of positions.
So, why does this generational change matter? Well, millennials and Gen Z have different priorities and buying criteria than earlier generations. This includes wanting a tech-savy experience and prioritizing diversity as well as sustainability. In short, their considerations differ from earlier generations’, and adjusting your approach accordingly will be key to win deals in the future.
Out of these new factors that are considered, sustainability stands in the forefront. Something that was recently emphasized by Nasdaq, in an article that gathered a ton of data points from multiple sources. Showing that:
- “75% of millennials are eco-conscious to the point of changing their buying habits to favor environmentally-friendly products”
- “Millennials and Gen Z stand out for their high levels of engagement with the issue of climate change”
- “90 % of millennials are interested in pursuing sustainable investments”
This underscores the value that younger generations place on sustainability. As these generations are now coming into decision-making roles, this also implies that your organization’s sustainability efforts could affect your sales success. After all, people are more likely to buy products from people who share their values, and this is especially true for the younger generations that now control the buying process.
How to adapt to generational changes
Ok, so new generations are populating the workforce and making more and more purchase decisions. Their priorities differ and they tend to have a larger focus on sustainability. To successfully sell to these generations, you may do well to adjust your approach and make sustainability a part of your organization’s identity.
One way to do this is to find a digital tool that lets you meet and interact with buyers digitally and remotely. This can let you drive and close deals while cutting the number of business trips and, as a result, significantly decrease your carbon emissions. This can let you show your buyers that you’re actively working to control your emissions, all while driving revenue growth and not losing out on any future deals.
As an added bonus, adding this digital layer can also let you cater to changes in buyer preferences. This, as buyers today want more seller interactions to be done digitally and remotely. In fact, the Forrester/Outreach study we talked about showed that (the younger generation of) buyers today don’t want to talk to sales right away. Instead, they want to do their own research and talk to a sales rep first in the Exploring – or Buying stage of their journey. They want to drive their own buying journeys and they want to do so digitally.
What this means is that, by finding a digital tool that let you share material, collaborate, meet and interact with your buyer from a distance, you can effectively tackle three things with one tool. I.e. you can:
- Cut carbon emissions by cutting business trips and drive a sustainable change
- Cater to changes in buyer priorities and show your commitment to sustainability
- Cater to changes in buyer preferences and give them the digital experience they’re after
Sustainability for sales: a win-win situation
In short, using a digital tool that lets you drive deals remotely, with less in-person meetings and the business trips they entail, is a win-win situation. It can let you and your organization take a first step toward a more sustainable future, while catering to changes in buyer priorities and preferences. Which, in turn, can help you close more and larger deals while building stronger customer relations.
Of course, more will be needed to make sure that we, as a planet, meet the global environmental goals we’ve set, but we think it’s an excellent start. More importantly, it is a change that you can actually make today, and that is likely to help you drive revenue growth while working for a better tomorrow. Which, to us, makes it a truly sustainable change – as it will help you make sure that your organization remains healthy and prosperous, and that our earth does, too.
Did you know? SP_CE gives you a Digital Sales Room where you can interact with buyers in, and between, meetings, gather all relevant material and drive larger deals with fewer in-person meetings. Learn more in our Digital Sales Room FAQ or contact us to get a live tour of the SP_CE Digital Sales Room.