Implementing Artificial Intelligence (AI) in B2B sales: A strategic approach


The rapid evolution of artificial intelligence (AI) has revolutionized the landscape of B2B sales, opening up a plethora of opportunities for companies. By selecting the appropriate AI applications, businesses can fortify their sales strategies, establish themselves as market leaders, and secure long-term business success.

The remarkable advancement of artificial intelligence (AI) has ushered in a new era for B2B sales, presenting businesses with a wealth of possibilities. AI’s immense potential has impacted nearly every industry, as evidenced by a McKinsey survey that highlighted a more than twofold increase in AI adoption since 2017. Within the realm of sales, AI applications offer targeted solutions across various domains. These encompass streamlining repetitive tasks, predicting customer requirements, and optimizing sales processes – in essence, innovative solutions that can provide invaluable assistance to sales professionals.

Potential Applications of AI in Sales The potential applications of AI in B2B sales are extensive. AI can relieve sales representatives of monotonous and time-consuming tasks such as data visualization, research, and personalized emails. This newfound efficiency grants sales teams more time for strategic initiatives and direct customer interactions. AI systems are adept at analyzing vast datasets to discern customer behavior patterns, enabling accurate predictions about future needs. This insight facilitates the creation of tailored solutions and a customer-centric sales approach.

AI also empowers revenue forecasting, automated lead scoring, and the development of data-driven personas for enhanced customer comprehension. Moreover, AI can gauge real-time customer sentiment and perform churn analysis to anticipate customer attrition. Enhancing the quality of customer data in CRM systems and leveraging speech-to-text technology for documenting in-person visits further exemplify AI’s advantages in sales. Additionally, AI’s capabilities extend to precise price optimization, predicting offer acceptance probabilities, and determining optimal price points for products and services.

The applications are myriad, yet the specific usage of AI in B2B sales hinges upon individual business requirements. As such, the focus now shifts to the implementation of AI systems within sales strategies.

The Art of Implementation The integration of AI systems into sales operations can yield efficiency gains, improved closure rates, and heightened customer satisfaction. Successful implementation, however, necessitates a human-centric approach. A symbiotic relationship between humans and technology is crucial for fully harnessing AI’s potential in sales and achieving sustained sales performance enhancement. This approach is often referred to as human-centered AI or human-centric AI, which prioritizes human needs and preferences. By centering on algorithms that operate within human-based frameworks, the interaction between humans and AI is enhanced, ultimately optimizing the overall user experience (UX).

Organizations endeavoring to implement AI systems with a human-centered AI approach should consider the following steps:

Understand the context of use

Conduct a thorough analysis of the context of use to gain deep insights into user requirements for the AI solution, which then informs clear AI development objectives.

Define user-oriented requirements:

Leverage the insights gained from the context analysis to define user-centric requirements for the AI solution, ensuring alignment with user needs and preferences.


During the implementation phase, prioritize usability and user experience. Design an intuitive user interface that facilitates seamless interaction with the AI system.


Validate the extent to which user-oriented requirements have been met through usability testing, user surveys, and iterative feedback loops with potential users. This evaluation process identifies areas for improvement, enhancing the AI system’s efficacy. Successful human-AI interaction fosters a positive user experience for sales teams, potentially boosting efficiency, productivity, and overall company revenue.

Choosing Between “Make” and “Buy” Implementing AI in sales prompts a strategic decision: should a custom AI solution be developed (Make) or an existing solution be procured (Buy)? If the decision is to “Make,” it’s important to determine whether the solution will be developed in-house or outsourced. In both cases, a range of considerations should guide the decision-making process:

Internal resources

Can the organization allocate sufficient resources for an in-house solution?

Vendor experience

Are there experienced vendors catering to the organization’s industry?

Data requirements

What data will the implementation necessitate, and how will data privacy and security be ensured?


What interfaces are needed for seamless integration?


Does the solution need to be tailored to the company’s specific needs?

Each option carries its own advantages and disadvantages. Purchasing an external solution offers rapid implementation and minimal resource allocation but may lack customization. Developing an in-house solution provides maximum adaptability and control but incurs higher initial costs. Alternatively, partnering with an external service provider for custom solution development could offer cost-efficiency and expert collaboration but may entail communication challenges and data security concerns.

Managers should conduct a thorough analysis of their company’s unique situation and weigh the pros and cons of each option. Considering the organization’s long-term vision and viewing AI implementation as an investment for the future is crucial. Regardless of the chosen route, involving the sales team in the selection process is essential. By making informed decisions about suitable AI applications, companies can empower their sales force, seize a pioneering role in the market, and realize their long-term business objectives.


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