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Do you know where you are wasting money on good leads? Some crucial basics are holding B2B sales teams back. We have the answers!
Let us set the scene: you're a new B2B company, and it's time to generate leads for sales. You begin investing in marketing, either by hiring someone internally or working through an agency. But a common problem evolves: sales and marketing are at odds. And this wastes your marketing money and fails to win you customers.
Ah, good leads—this is the top issue that sets sales and marketing teams off. Due to a series of misunderstandings, sales often thinks marketing is serving up "bad leads." And marketing becomes exasperated as sales fails to follow up on marketing leads through marketing leads which costs you money.
Modern sales and marketing that scales uses automated processes, which require you to employ a strategy of laying out predetermined messages to be sent at specific times to your prospects depending on where they are at in their buyer journey (aka buyer cycle).
Developing a sales playbook detailing a well-thought-out plan that you are constantly tweaking as results pan out or fizzle is a must. Sales cannot just wing it or run with gut instinct and keep up with the number of leads you will create through marketing efforts. Sales needs to be on board with your laid-out plan, or you waste money.
Marketing 101: As we covered in our post "Do Your Salespeople Refuse to Follow up on Leads?", reaching out to prospects is not a straightforward process. Marketing Consultant Amanda Berger explains:
"Because content marketing is a top-of-funnel activity and all about providing relevant information to anyone digging around the internet in exchange for their email address, there are inevitably going to be some downloads from people who aren't potential prospects."
This means even when marketing is doing everything "right," some leads will not be a good fit. But the process for following up on leads should remain methodical. Sales must consider every lead and then tag them in your system as a qualified or unqualified lead. This process is the only way to learn what works and what doesn't. This is the only way to achieve scalable, repeatable, and predictable results.
Part of the collaboration between sales and marketing is that marketing listens, and sales communicates about what sales sees "out in the field." Sales talks to leads and customers every day. and can answer pure-gold questions like:
These questions enable your marketing team to create better messages that lure good prospects in. The sales cycle has a prescribed number of outreach activities that must occur in a specific order so your messages are not annoying and turn off leads. Feedback from sales ensures marketing messages and automation are crafted to be more relevant, with fewer bad leads filtering through.
Tempting prospects with a content download is one of the top ways marketing fishes for leads. Leads that come in as free emails (Google, Outlook, Hotmail, Yahoo) are a BIG bone of contention for sales, and a misunderstanding that puts sales and marketing teams in the fight club ring. Many salespeople do not touch leads with a Gmail or Yahoo address. And they will tell you to your face.
Here is the thing so many misunderstand: people use private emails over their work emails all the time when surfing the net. And for excellent reasons including:
Good reasons aside, sometimes it just happens like this:
You can see what a tremendous waste of money it is when your salespeople buck the process of following up on all leads by discounting right off the bat ones that are not business email addresses.
Do you need a stronger sales team and a predictable sales pipeline? Check out The Truth About B2B Sales ebook that outlines how to create formal B2B sales processes that work.
Our ebook includes: