Much of old school selling happened on a personal level. Face-to-face meetings and phone calls were common. Prospects gave us attention because we had information which would help them understand something they were unfamiliar with.
The new economy is digital. We can self-service on what we need education or orientation on using the internet. Buying is done far before the selling starts by a salesperson. However, it is part of one continuum.
Unfortunately, organizations trapped in old mindsets are limited by self-imposed boundaries. They can only measure, react and move sales forward based on a buyer’s willingness to give time and attention for a meeting.
The boundaries from an old model limit visibility, interaction and value exchange possible in a much larger paradigm. Marketing automation goes beyond traditional boundaries to augment the selling process and skills of an organization with timely value to prospects. Here are some things that your new process can now support when you go beyond the boundaries:
- Automation is doing the prospecting. Multiple personal follow-ups may not be welcome. Once a week personal touchpoints are about the maximum a prospect can tolerate without perceiving aggressiveness. However, valuable information delivered at the right time can record digital behaviors – opens, clicks, page visits, downloads, etc. – and be recorded within your CRM customer data. Your salesperson and your marketing automation system are working in tandem with all touchpoints – personal and digital – recorded in a prospect’s record.
- Prioritization of leads. A salesperson can have one engagement at a time. They work in serial. Marketing automation working with a sales process helps to percolate the most ready leads. Lead scoring reports help to communicate how active a buyer is with your content and their readiness to buy based on responsiveness and interaction with your content assets. This helps sales to focus their energy on a more qualified list of leads.
- Lead conversion pipeline. If you are only working in the physical realm, then your pipeline is what you see and touch. However, a pipeline of promoted leads can automate what constitutes a working pipeline for your sales team. Lead distribution from a large set of visitors or prospects can be managed automatically with assignment rules in place. Your sales meetings can be focused on action rather than reporting, for the reporting is real-time with true sales opportunities.
- Sales readiness. If your salesperson is having to educate in valuable meetings with the client, then it is a limited meeting compared to a buyer who is able to dialogue and collaborate. Nurturing from marketing automation can prepare the mindset, dialogue and understanding of the buyer. This helps them to feel comfortable in technical discussions and ask the right questions. Framing of the discussion creates a better buying situation where intelligent questions and dialogue can occur. It feels like selling otherwise where there is a large knowledge imbalance between the salesperson and the buyer.
Ultimately, marketing automation removes boundaries between the buyer and the information they need. Trust can be built and the ingredients for a rich sales discussion are prepared with the buyer able to consume valuable information on their timetable. It is convenient and preferable for how people like to buy in the new economy.
If your processes rely only on human touchpoints, then your boundaries can limit revenue opportunity.
What would automation look like for your business to grow sales?