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Let's do a quick exercise. Try to remember a famous TV commercial from your childhood. It probably talked about the benefits and features of an extraordinary service that no one could go without. If we think about it, the promotion of products and services has changed dramatically.
Today's successful messages are not those that tell you how wonderful a service is, but those that really know the pains, behaviors and motivations of their customers, and that's where they're aiming.
Here's a perfect example: cold calling (a common strategy in traditional sales) is only 2.5% effective today. And 77% of B2B buyers say they don't talk to sales reps until they've done their own research.
This is when we start talking about inbound sales.
What is inbound sales?
Unlike traditional sales in which the goal was to adapt any prospect to the sales processes of the companies, inbound sales focuses on previously studying the buyer persona, knowing their buying behavior and adapting their communication to solve their needs.
It is a modern and personalized methodology that focuses on the pain points of your ideal client, invites you to act as a trusted advisor and adjusts the sales process to the buyer's journey.
Thanks to internet access, your customer has the freedom to find out about the solution they need and is doing so more and more frequently. Your role now goes beyond a simple sale. It's time to advise your prospects during their research and decision, guide them, accompany them and be an active part of the resolution of their needs.
It's about selling the way your customers buy.
Here are some steps you should follow to orient your sales to the needs and demands of your ideal client:
1. Define your buyer's journey
Maybe you have a list of everything you want to say about your brand, but it's possible that this list doesn't match what your customer really needs to know. The information itself can be found by your customer, so this step will help you go further. Identify it in 3 steps:
Practical guide to increase your conversion rate
and close more business.
- Insights. Learn how your buyers describe the challenges related to your offer, how they research them (what media they use, how often), and how they decide whether or not to prioritize them.
- Consideration. Focus on what category of solutions your buyer persona researches, how buyers perceive the pros and cons of each category, and how your category is different from your prospects' point of view.
- Decision. Identify the offers that your buyer persona evaluates, what criteria they use to do so, what your differentiator is in the eyes of the buyer and which person has the decision in their hands (e.g., financial manager or sales manager).
2. Tailor your sales process to the buyer's journey
Unlike the traditional method, in inbound sales the sales process is created only after knowing what the buyer's journey is, which helps sellers and buyers to be aligned. Take a look at these steps:
- Marketers identify strangers which challenges are compatible with the help your brand can offer. They become leads.
- Marketers connect with these leads to help them prioritize their goals. If the lead is interested, it becomes a qualified lead.
- Salespeople explore the challenges of their qualified leads to see if your offer fits what they need. If so, they become opportunities.
- Salespeople advise these opportunities on how your offer is the best option to help them overcome their challenges. If you accept, you become a customer.
Each of these 4 steps must be clearly defined, so that there is a perfect alignment between your marketing and sales team that not only attracts your ideal client, but also allows them to be convinced that your option is superior to your competition.
Think like a buyer: more than a company that offers you a sale, you want a company that offers you a solution, an extraordinary consultancy, a unique experience. Your company can become this model that will not only help you be better perceived by your customers, but will increase your sales, your authority, your recognition, your profitability and more.
The Inbound sales methodology is here to stay, but worry if you are not yet putting it into practice. At Innova Marketing Solutions we are already helping businesses like yours to sell more by implementing this strategy. Schedule a 30-minute call to find out how.