Over three days last week, Zilliant customers, partners, and prospective customers from around the world attended our second-ever virtual MindShare pricing and sales growth conference. The digital event kicked off with a welcome from chief executive officer Greg Peters and featured four customer speakers sharing their stories, an in-depth Zilliant product demo, and, for the first time ever, a final day with breakout sessions highlighting our partners, practices, and products. The prevailing theme of this year’s MindShare was powering intelligent commerce and accelerating results for B2B companies by connecting their commercial strategies with effective execution.
Here are four takeaways from MindShare 2021:
Science and data drive decision-making
There’s been a data explosion over the past decade, and there are more volumes and varieties of data than ever before. For B2B companies, this data is invaluable and can provide insights, shape strategies, and provide specific recommendations to sales teams. Therefore, a software solution for scaling, managing, and delivering these data insights is critical for success in today’s landscape.
“Using this data to drive commercial strategies, and effectively execute on those within your organization, is what we call intelligent commerce,” said Zilliant Chief Executive Officer and President Greg Peters.
Zilliant’s solution set has evolved through continuous innovation to help B2B companies take on their pricing and sales challenges by leveraging data. One of the biggest science advancements for Zilliant over the past year was upgrading our data pipeline to meet our customers’ ever-growing needs.
"Our cloud-native platform includes a data pipeline that can process 10 billion data points in the time it used to take 10 million — that's a 1000x improvement in data throughput," said Zilliant Vice President of Science and Analytics Lee Rehwinkel
During customer presentations, science and data were proven to be a common thread when it came to powering intelligent commerce. One customer explained how using search data enhanced their stocking and pricing strategies, while another detailed how they leveraged data capabilities during the pandemic to understand the make-up of the market and maintain relevant pricing.
“What’s great about Price IQ® and ongoing support from Zilliant is we were able to tune the data science model,” said one customer. “This ensured we had the most relevant pricing data to inform our sales and revenue management teams as we went through this crisis.”
B2B should deliver a B2C-like eCommerce experience
Many B2B buyers are digital consumers in their personal lives and are used to the convenience of the B2C eCommerce experience. Naturally, they are starting to expect that same ease when conducting business with their B2B suppliers. Additionally, the younger generation of both buyers and sellers have high expectations of what the digital shopping experience entails.
“B2B companies are realizing that their customers need self-service capabilities,” said Zilliant Product Experience Manager Sam Leung. “They want to do things on their own, and they want to mimic the interactions they would have if they called their sales rep directly.”
One method for B2B companies to accelerate a B2C eCommerce experience is by adding Amazon-like product guidance or recommendations. These include recovery recommendations that remind buyers that it’s time to restock, growth recommendations that highlight products purchased by customers with similar profiles, and complementary recommendations that aim to increase order value at the checkout cart level.
“The three types of recommendations can be enabled via Sales IQ™ and Cart IQTM ,” said Zilliant Director of Science and Solutions Carl Jeanbart. “They are easy to setup, and they are excellent starting points for companies who are adding eCommerce to their offerings.”
The right foundation accelerates successful digital transformation
We think of digital transformation as taking and applying technology innovations to improve business processes, business culture, and the customer experience as business demands. Therefore, it shouldn’t be a surprise that the pandemic and its associated restrictions and lockdowns accelerated the need for digital transformation, especially among B2B companies.
“Without having the ability to travel or see clients in person, a lot of business is moving online,” said Zilliant Chief Technology Officer and Senior Vice President of Engineering Shams Chauthani. “Companies that have been able to shift and adapt have seen great success, while companies that have lagged behind have truly struggled.”
But for B2B companies, digital transformation doesn’t happen overnight. It must begin with the right foundation of building blocks that can scale or transform over time. These building blocks include digitizing data and prices, digitalizing sales rep and customer experiences, and transforming the strategic direction of your business.
“You need to create the right pricing foundation, improve experiences for your sales reps and customers, and then think about how to automate processes,” said Zilliant Product Experience Manager Sam Leung. “Also know that as you go through these building blocks, you’re adding more and more value to your stakeholders, your external stakeholders, your business, and your customers.”
Bring your own data science model
There has been incredible growth in in-house data science teams over the last decade as business leaders finally see the ROI that science investments can bring their organizations. However, while our customers have built some great data science models, they found it difficult to get those models into production applications and insights to sales reps.
Zilliant’s core value has always been getting scientific intelligence in front of sales reps. So, while the Zilliant IQ Platform™ is built to deliver our own solutions, such as Price IQ®, Sales IQ™, and Cart IQTM, it also enables our customers to utilize and operationalize their own data science models. This allows data science teams to use their favored modelling approach to get their insights in front of sales reps.
“I’m extremely proud about what we’ve accomplished,” said Zilliant Vice President of Science and Analytics Lee Rehwinkel. “I think it shows the great innovations that are possible when Zilliant is able to partner with our customers’ in-house data science teams.”
Thanks to all of our MindShare 2021 attendees and presenters for making it a successful event! We are excited to announce that MindShare Europe will be in-person in Paris on November 30, 2021, and MindShare 2022 will also be in-person in Austin in June 2022! Sign up to be the first to receive event details.
Contact us for more pricing and sales insights.