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  • Laura Stringer

Getting access to your B2B customers

One question that keeps coming up in my Office Hours is around testing new product ideas with customers, in a B2B context.

Sometimes in B2B you have better access to customers, because the company has a closer relationship with them than a B2C company typically would. Unfortunately, in a sales-led organization, the sales team is often wary of providing access to their book, either because they’re territorial or because they’re worried about damaging a sale.

There is no easy answer to this challenge, but some things to try include:

  • Persuade Sales that if they help you, you’ll bring them more/easier/bigger sales.

  • Talk to Customer Success about what they’re seeing and if they could arrange a call with a couple folks. Best case, create a Customer Advisory Board for ongoing access.

  • If this is a show stopping problem, then it’s time to talk to leadership about how the sales-led culture is impacting product growth and development, and that your bets are going to be far riskier absent proper data. I don’t consider this tattling, so much as addressing a core conflict in the demands from executive leadership so that it can be mitigated.

  • Finally, find people in your target segment who are not (yet!) customers. You’ll have to incentivize them, but you can likely find some folks willing to look at a prototype and answer some questions.

If you still need to talk through this challenge, I'd love to talk with you! Feel free to sign up for one of my 75-minute "power hours" so we can deep dive.


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