For sales leaders, capitalizing on buyer interest through caring for new leads and filling the sales funnel with best-fit opportunities remains among the top priorities for growing revenue. Nothing new here. For marketing leaders, these priorities should drive all go-to-market tactics and lead generation strategies. 53% of marketers spend at least half their budget on lead generation, meaning that even for established companies, go-to-market tactics like inbound marketing and lead scoring can be the make it or break it difference in effectively fueling revenue.
We’re sure you know that lead generation is crucial to your business’ success — but what tactics can you use, right now, to provide your sales team with the best-fit, quality leads they need to close deals and grow your business? Below, we’re sharing five interrelated tactics to generate leads and convert them into satisfied customers. To be successful, you need to employ all these tactics, not just a few.
Let’s take a closer look!
1. Drive the Sales Funnel with Inbound and Outbound Marketing Strategies
The first step to lead generation begins with marketing. To ensure you’re getting the most out of your marketing efforts and go-to-market tactics, it’s imperative to employ both inbound and outbound marketing strategies. Inbound marketing is about bringing customers to your website through valuable, engaging content (such as blog articles, landing pages, or videos) tailored to their interests and pain points. Outbound marketing, on the other hand, captures new leads through more traditional advertising methods, such as pay-per-click ads. Essentially, these two marketing strategies utilize different types of content:
Utilizing both inbound and outbound marketing requires sales and marketing alignment. Marketing will need input from sales to solidify the high priority target audiences and buyer personas. Sales will have unique perspectives as to the demographic and firmographic information that makes for a best-fit lead. With that intel, marketing can then go-to-market with thoughtful content creation and campaign development with the specific goal of attracting the types of leads sales is looking for. The content used in both inbound and outbound marketing is often a prospect’s first impression of the business and the product. Thus, alignment and transparency between sales and marketing are key to pulling in the leads that are most likely to convert and generate revenue.
2. Use Segmentation and Scoring to Find Those Most Qualified
Naturally, marketing will pull in a wide range of leads — some of whom may not be your best-fit customers. So, how can you determine which leads are most likely to make a purchase? The answer lies in lead scoring, a system that ranks leads based on their perceived interest in your product, and audience segmentation.
The marketing team helps create a system for segmenting and scoring leads based on their demographics, job role, seniority, company size, as well as activities and engagement with your brand. This works by assigning different scores to different actions and criteria to indicate the lead’s interest in the product or service. For instance, opening a marketing email, visiting a landing page, or downloading an eBook would contribute to a lead’s overall score within the lead scoring model. A higher score shows stronger interest (and therefore, a greater likelihood of purchasing), allowing the sales team to know which leads to get in touch with first.
For go-to-market tactics especially, segmenting leads based on role, influence, location, industry, and more, can help your sales reps gain a better understanding of each lead’s influence and position within their company. For instance, let’s say your rep receives a group of segmented and scored leads. With this information, they determine to contact the leads who have the most influence or purchase-power within their role — making the likelihood of a sale much higher.
3. Personalize Interactions with High Quality Leads
In order to make the most of your highest quality leads, your reps should perform extensive research to personalize sales interactions. With research, the sales pitch can be tailored to appeal to the lead’s most pressing pain points and use cases. On average, sales increase by 56% when experiences are personalized — so creating a more unique experience for each lead can instantly boost your sales performance.
For instance, before a rep interacts with a lead, they typically perform extensive research to understand the prospect’s unique needs. Let’s say the prospect, an office administrator, will gain the most value from your product’s ability to cut down on office overhead. Your rep focuses on this feature by sharing case studies, customer testimonials, ROI information, and more to drive home the product’s most impactful value to the prospect. This personalization helps push the lead towards an informed purchasing decision sooner. Without research, your rep would be unable to personalize the sales experience to the prospect.
4. Strengthen Your Go-to-Market Tactics with a Plan to Make First Contact
We’re sure you’ve heard it before: “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” While it may be cliche, it’s absolutely true — especially in sales. Within four seconds, the prospect gleans a first impression and decides if they plan to listen to your rep or not. With only four seconds to create an impression, determining the best way to make first contact and communicate effectively can greatly impact the likelihood of a sale. Ideally, you want your reps to contact leads via phone or video conference first, so that they can personalize communications. The goal of first contact is to make a good impression, determine who the decision-makers are, and get the prospect interested in further discussion. So, how should your reps accomplish this?
One of the biggest keys to first contact lies in making the interaction personal, not “sales-y.” This way, the prospect doesn’t feel as if your rep is interrupting their day or taking time away from valuable work hours. Your rep should get the prospect talking about their pain points, so that the prospect feels ready to discuss solutions. With the prospect focusing on their current issues, it’s much easier for your rep to secure a more formal sales meeting — which is the ultimate goal of the conversation.
5. Nailing the Buyer Experience to Maximize Conversion Likelihood
A proper follow-up offer is just as crucial as the initial meeting. This key part of your go-to-market tactics helps to actually convert leads into buyers. In the follow-up, your rep begins the negotiation process. Your reps should provide a proposal that includes exactly what the prospect agreed to, and nothing more. Reps should set a meeting to discuss the proposal so that they can address any objections or issues. Throughout negotiations, your reps should focus on summarizing the deliverables and pricing while fortifying the values of your brand.
With the economy taking a turn for the worse, buyer objections are on the rise. When 60% of buyers say no four times before saying yes, you need to prepare your reps to counter objections during negotiations. Ensure there’s a plan in place for some of the most common objections, such as:
- “The price is too high.”
- “I’m not able to make a decision like this for my company.”
- “The price of _____ is cheaper.”
Rather than viewing these objections as a setback, your reps should see them as a final opportunity to communicate value. For instance, if the buyer is concerned about competitor pricing, your rep should emphasize why your pricing is higher. The marketing team should have extensive resources and shareable content related to how your product surpasses competitors in value, ROI, and more. Remember when we mentioned sales and marketing alignment earlier? Here’s another opportunity to connect the two teams! It’s a win-win.
Go-to-market tactics require effort, input, and continuous improvement from teams all across the organization. When you bring your product to market, having strong go-to-market tactics that marketing, sales and product teams all contribute to from their unique perspectives makes the buyer’s experience that much more streamlined.
At SFE Partners, our knowledgeable sales consultants can help your team build the go-to-market tactics you need to fuel growth and boost revenue. We tackle the challenges from all angles to deliver solutions that are unique, customized, and proven.
Start building your go-to-market tactics today with expert sales consulting from SFE Partners.