Read a recap of MindShare 2022, our first in-person conference in three years, to gain valuable insights from industry experts, partners, and customers.
MindShare 2022 Recap
Last week, Zilliant customers, partners, and prospective customers from around the world attended our first in-person MindShare conference in three years. After two highly successful digital MindShare events in 2020 and 2021, this year’s event was perhaps our most successful ever as attendance outpaced our last in-person event in 2019. This year’s edition of our annual premier pricing and sales conference featured two and a half days of pre-conference workshops, impactful keynote presentations, comprehensive product demonstrations, detailed customer stories, and partner-led breakout sessions. The prevailing theme of this year’s MindShare was being able to adapt and transform to our post-pandemic reality and continue to power intelligent commerce during challenging times. As Zilliant President and Chief Executive Officer Greg Peters said in his MindShare 2022 opening remarks, “The ability to systematically adapt to change with your systems, your data, and your sales reps is becoming increasingly important to survival.”
Here are four takeaways from MindShare 2022:
Transformation is Essential for Long-term Success
At Zilliant, we’ve written substantially about digital transformation, and why it’s essential to shaping commercial strategies and enabling B2B companies to compete effectively in today’s landscape. In his MindShare keynote presentation, Bestselling Author and Strategic Advisor Daniel Burrus broke down the concept of transformation even further and explained why it’s easier and even more important than change.
“Whether it’s personal or business transformation, transformation always comes from the inside out, and that gives you control,” said Burrus.
The first customer session of the conference continued to focus on the criticality of transformation, and why it was so crucial for overcoming their pricing pains. The director of financial planning and strategy at a global food services provider discussed their company’s lack of visibility into price performance, sales rep behavior, and how price increases impacted sales. They soon discovered the root of the problem was there was no science involved in their pricing process. Not only did they need to transform their processes, but they also needed the right partner to help implement a more scientific approach to pricing. After eventually partnering with Zilliant to leverage Price IQ® and Price Manager™, they stabilized their growth margin, increased customer retention, and are excited about future transformation efforts across the organization with Zilliant’s help.
“Zilliant fit into our long-term digital transformation journey and was instrumental in getting us to where we needed to be,” said the company’s director of financial planning and strategy. “I’m excited about continuing our digital transformation of systems and other business units informed by Zilliant pricing intelligence.”
Optimizing the Customer Relationship is Key, but Avoid the CRM Trap
Early in day one’s session on “Power Intelligent Commerce with the Zilliant Platform,” Zilliant Senior Vice President of Products and Science Pete Eppele spoke about how we’re in an incredible time where the seller and customer interaction has been very digitized. For B2B companies, the main challenge they’re facing is enabling a superior customer experience by implementing a digital-first approach that is consistent with the traditional, in-person buying experience. While the optimization of processes is key, equally important is optimizing the customer relationship through technology.
“Optimizing the customer relationship with every tool and touchpoint is the focus of intelligent commerce,” said Eppele.
However, during one customer session, the director of sales enablement at a foodservice distributor spoke about the importance of ensuring a company’s Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool is accelerating sales efforts rather than becoming another administrative checkbox that eats up sales reps’ valuable time.
Instead of relying on reps to input customer and meeting data, their distributor’s team gives sales reps a daily customer to-do list, driven by data science they can trust, focusing on opportunities they might otherwise miss. What was the engine powering these insights and targeted actions for their CRM reinvigoration efforts? Zilliant Sales IQ™ combined with Campaign Manager™, which seamlessly integrates into their CRM with Zilliant Sales Planner™. The result for this foodservice distributor was an insight-and-action-driven sales team that no longer uses a pricing-from-the-gut mentality.
Don’t Just Sell – Solve a Problem
When it comes to selling, if your sales approach isn’t aligned with how customers make and approve decisions, your message could get lost in the shuffle. In his keynote presentation, Bestselling Author and B2B Growth Advisor Ian Altman offered intelligent strategies to sell based on value that transcends price, which included the need to offer real solutions.
“Don’t come across as someone who’s trying to sell, but someone who’s trying to solve a problem,” said Altman.
In terms of Zilliant’s revenue intelligence solutions, the aim is to empower sales by offering actionable insights and guidance to transform gutfeel selling into finding real solutions based on science and data. At another customer session, the senior manager of pricing and financial analysis at a large electronic components distributor described how they won over its sales team with scientifically derived prices, helping them to consistently quote with confidence. The electronic components distributor was able to achieve a massive reduction in percent-priced-below-floor while more than doubling its target price usage in the field by using Price IQ® combined with Sales IQ™.
“From day one, Zilliant was always invested in our company and its success,” said the distributor’s director of pricing and financial analysis. “I can’t stress enough how excellent the Zilliant team was to work with and be that true partner.”
Start Using Your Data and Don’t Stop
It should come as no surprise, but the value of leveraging data was once again a primary theme of this year’s MindShare. Several customers spoke at length about how Zilliant helped substantially on the data front from the very beginning, which helped them shape their pricing and sales strategy.
“Zilliant came in, looked at the data, and in the first meeting, gave us insights about our business that we didn’t even know,” said the vice president of sales and marketing at a metals distributor. “We used the tools Zilliant provided to mine the data and tell us who the right customer is.”
In his keynote presentation, Daniel Burrus described how due to today’s market volatility and inflationary pressures, we’re in an era marked by the importance of being agile. He continued to explain how we’re in a data explosion and how good quality real-time data accelerates the ability to be agile.
“We’re at the base of a mountain of a data avalanche. We’re just at the beginning of seeing the importance of data,” said Burrus.
Thanks to all of our MindShare 2022 attendees and presenters for making it a successful event!