When it comes to the world of sales and marketing, leads are everything. This is especially true in the B2B space, where relationships between company and client need to run deeper than just the transactional. Many companies expend a lot of energy into getting leads, using tactics such as email campaigns and lead generation webinars.
However, getting a lead is only the first step, isn’t it?
While it’s nice to build business relationships, what your company really needs to survive are sales-ready leads. Going from “lead” to “sales-ready lead” is an important step that’s often tricky to navigate. We will cover some tips on moving your leads through the sales funnel, including through the use of business webinar marketing.
What counts as a sales-ready lead?
At first glance, this seems like a pointless question. If a client is ready to purchase, they are sales-ready, right?
However, it’s important to realize that “sales-ready” can mean different things for different businesses and industries. It’s important to understand what your goal is before you start trying to convert your leads.
Typically, your marketing and sales departments work together to establish some criteria for what constitutes a sales-ready lead. If you offer multiple kinds of service, you might have many different kinds of “sales-ready leads.” These criteria could include everything from client needs, funding or authority.
For example, a client who loves your service is engaged with your webinar meetings and is constantly following the funnel to purchasing pages may seem like a good sales-ready lead. However, if they don’t also have the money or company authority to purchase your service, they’re not likely to follow through and commit.
How do I tell if a lead is sales-ready?
As mentioned above, building a set of criteria appropriate to your industry and business is a good way to start identifying sales-ready leads. “Static” criteria are useful, but they are just the first step in recognizing sales-ready leads.
More useful is being able to piece those points of data together and recognize patterns. This is why it’s vital to track the success of previous sales-ready leads, so that you can benchmark later leads against yourself. It’s up to your marketing department to determine what your sales funnel looks like and what moving along every step should look like.
You can also use data gained from business webinars or other analytics to build up a “customer profile.” Your marketing team should have a lot of demographic data on hand, and a few “customer profiles” built to fit the kind of clients you look for. You can then use these marketing profiles of existing clients to predict your future clients.
One last important piece of data to track is engagement. This requires following up on leads to see how many events they are attending or promotions they are answering. Hosting regular webinar meetings and other events creates a deep reservoir of data, so that your marketing department can track how engagement fluctuates over time.
How do I make leads sales-ready?
So, it’s one thing to be able to recognize a lead as sales-ready. But you don’t want to simply wait for those sales-ready leads to fortuitously come along. In order to really start driving sales, you can’t just passively watch your sales funnel – you need to be actively taking steps to try and move leads through the funnel.
This kind of extra attention can take many different forms. Firstly, it’s important to adjust your marketing and personalize it to clients at different stages of the sales funnel. Once someone is engaged, it’s redundant to provide marketing that explains your business offerings. They already know by this point! The key now is to highlight how your service helps them specifically.
You also want to look for as many opportunities to engage with them as possible. This is where webinar marketing can play a huge role. By inviting existing leads to webinars, you can provide the information they might feel they need before committing to a purchase of a service.
Another good trick is to use webinars as part of “customer success management.” If your potential client base knows that they’ll be looked after during their onboarding process, they’ll be much more confident investing into a service.
How do I reduce churn?
Even once you’ve begun converting leads at a good rate, that’s not the end of the story. For anyone involved in the B2B space, the shadow of “churn” looms on the horizon – the rate at which clients opt out of your services. Once your business matures, the question becomes less about how to attract new clients and more about how to make sure you maintain as many clients as possible.
The key to reducing churn is to pinpoint why it is happening – every company offers different services, and different reasons why clients become dissatisfied with those offerings. Hosting polls and quizzes during your business webinar meetings, or sending out regular surveys are all great ways to get a better idea of your client’s pain points.
Common pain points can include cost or poor user experience – both of which can be adjusted if you take the time. In some cases, it’s just a situation where the service is not clicking with the right demographics, which can involve going back to the marketing drawing board.
However, not every client is an inevitable “lost cause.” In order to keep clients truly engaged, you need to be proactive. Webinar marketing of new features or updates to existing clients is a great way to keep them engaged with your offerings.
Business webinar meetings are also an excellent opportunity to give key clients a way to voice their concerns. By usingBy getting webinar software that allows for responses and comments, you can ensure that your clients feel connected to a larger community, which really cares about their concerns.
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