I know this may sound crazy, but I just talked to a sales manager that said he had too many leads. What he really meant was that he had more leads than he could follow up on and no way to separate the "hot leads"from the “not ready yet,” from the “tire kickers” who will never buy.
I asked him where most of his leads came from, and he said mostly from the website with a mix of tradeshows and direct prospecting - “but it’s hard to keep track of where they all come from and the prospect’s details.” Leads from tradeshows are often just badge scans and handwritten notes, and website leads only capture contact info and a short comment box that prospects use inconsistently.
How Inbound Marketing Makes Your Sales Team More Effective
One of the most effective ways to bring in more sales on a regular basis is inbound marketing. In a nutshell, inbound marketing is the process of using content to attract the right visitors to your website, converting them into qualified leads and then helping to close the sale.
Inbound marketing takes your business away from outdated impersonal cold calling aka “interruption marketing” into the present “age of the buyer” where buyers use the internet to get informed when it’s convenient for them. Which one do you prefer? And what do you think your customers prefer?
How Inbound Marketing Can Help Your Sales Team
Making your sales team more efficient is one of the many benefits of inbound marketing. It is designed to deliver better leads to your sales team at a time when they are primed to buy. There are three main ways that inbound marketing does this.
1. Lead Generation.
By attracting only those prospects that are truly interested in your product or service inbound marketing will consistently deliver a better quality lead to your sales team.
Content that addresses the needs of your buyers and helps them in the context of the challenges they face and how they can overcome their challenges is highly valued. By offering up credible content you offer value to your visitors and you not only get better leads but you also become a trusted thought leader in your industry. As your authority grows your content will be shared more. This will greatly increase the reach of your message and in turn bring in more visitors that will be turned into more leads.
2. Lead Nurturing.
No matter how long your sales cycle is, a well-planned inbound strategy will nurture your leads through each stage of the process and deliver them to your sales team at just the right time.
During each stage of the buyer’s journey the inbound marketing process serves up tailored content that supports their research and decision making and moves them onto the next stage. This whole process provides a relatively painless way for your customers to interact with you and it doesn’t bog down the sales team.
3. Lead Delivery.
And as I mentioned earlier, all leads aren’t created equal, which means an abundance of leads isn’t useful unless they’re qualified. Ask any member of your sales team what the most frustrating part of their job is and they will probably tell you that it is dealing with unqualified leads. Working prospects that are not ready to buy is not only a waste of time, but it is demoralizing as well.
With inbound marketing, you take the guesswork out of knowing when a prospect is ready to buy. As your prospect moves from an information gathering stage to a comparative stage, you will know it. Once they get to the point of seriously evaluating your product and need specific information such as pricing, advice on deployment options or to conduct a trial evaluation, then they will want to become involved with your sales team.
Using inbound marketing your sales team will only be interacting with prospects that will be receptive to their input and advice. Because they will be dealing with a higher quality lead, they will close more sales. And at this point the math is simple; more time spent with qualified prospects equals increased revenue…
Implementing an inbound marketing strategy for your business will make your sales team more efficient and keep them motivated. With a sales team that is positive and looking forward to coming into to work every day your business will grow and increase sales year over year.
Your website is the first step to an effective Inbound approach and can be your most effective sales person. And it doesn’t need to be complex and expensive, just well thought out with clear messages and compelling content offers.
A well designed website that incorporates inbound marketing will help your sales team to sell more, meet their quotas and increase their commissions.
Take a deeper dive with these guides: