We could go on about reasons we’ve heard why leads don't turn into deals. And reasons why deals don't close-won.
"I consistently email the leads, but many do not respond."
"We need more qualified leads. I call the leads, but they’re not qualified. "
"We are getting a lot of leads, but the majority can't afford our solution."
"I emailed pricing, but they went dark."
Add your own here.
The bottom line is if sales and marketing are not working together, deals will not close. In a B2B SaaS model, marketing should never be responsible for closed/won deal metrics. And as we see the economic outlook change, it's doubtful we will see one-call deals closing. Without a solid marketing strategy combined with a sales process that reps follow, deals will fall out of the pipeline and not close.
Let's take a look at the ideal roles marketing and sales should play:
We constantly hear from businesses that they don't know what their marketing teams should focus on. We believe in keeping it simple, creating a solid foundation first, and adding on marketing efforts when some wins have been spotted to accelerate growth.
Where to start:
Determine what you are actually selling
It's very common to run across an organization that has some cool one-trick technology but they really don’t have a product to sell. Make sure you have the product use case defined before you try and generate demand.
Define your target market and why they need your solution
Pinpoint who needs what you are selling and then define their pain points. Are you selling to CEOs, or do you need to tailor your messaging to a middle manager?
Simplify your message
We live in a world that's fast-paced with very short attention spans. Getting your message across quickly and succinctly is crucial before your prospect moves on. Long-winded emails won't cut it.
Define what marketing channels you want to test
There are many marketing channels out there. Don’t try to boil the ocean. Simply pick a couple of channels (email, ads, tradeshow, partner, social) you want to test and make a valiant effort to test the channel.
Create a way to track your efforts through a marketing automation tool like HubSpot. HubSpot's out-of-the-box reporting and marketing attribution makes it easy for most marketers to track their campaigns all the way through to closed/won revenue. We like to leverage as much native HubSpot functionality to track the lead as possible through the buyer's journey. Setting this up before you start running marketing channels makes it easier to understand what's working.
Measure the Success
You should define your core metrics upfront to track your marketing spend, evaluate success, and pivot where required.
So the leads that come out of this marketing work should all turn into deals, right? Wrong. This is where a well-defined sales process comes in.
When the market is hot, leads can close with one call or minimal effort. But as the easy leads dry up, we start to hear feedback about marketing's lead quality. When examined in more depth, these leads are usually not as ready to buy. The prospects need more resources to support their buying decision. This is where a repeatable sales process comes in. So, where should you start?
Evaluate your current sales process
Talk to your team and figure out what's working and where the hang-ups are in the current process. You need to figure out what works best and implement the process that makes sense for your organization to pull leads through the buyer's journey. How many touches are required before you mark a Lead as Nurture and send it back to marketing? Most articles and industry knowledge says 8-10 touches are needed just to get an initial meeting.
Map out your new sales process
There are many steps to take when mapping out your new sales process. HubSpot has many good resources to reference when building out a sales process.
Automate your sales process
Many sales activities are repetitive and can actually be automated. Emails regarding follow-ups, meetings, and prospecting emails are all examples of activities that can be automated. In fact, did you know that 30-50% of sales go to the first person that reaches out? Make sure you have automated triggers, reaching out as quickly as possible to prospects.
Measure the success
Once you’ve established the sales process, you’ll need to know if it's working or where prospects are falling out of the pipeline. Establish core metrics and track them on an ongoing basis. We like the opportunity to close/won ratio, # sales activities per lead, # meetings per lead. The sky is the limit though.
Evaluate and improve your process
Based on the metrics established, tweak the process to get the desired sales outcome.
Don't leave marketing out of the loop
Ensure your marketing team understands what deals are closing and why. The most successful sales and marketing teams we run across have aligned teams.
Pulling It All Together
As the market changes, ensuring your sales and marketing processes are executing efficiently and effectively will become even more important. With businesses scrutinizing budgets, sales cycles will predictably extend. Organizations that implement and follow a standardized marketing and sales process will discover that they can determine what is and is not working quickly. Revenue growth results from having the data available to make critical decisions to improve your funnel.
Call for Back Up!
Orange Marketing has your back if you are confused about where to start! We help B2B software and technology companies develop their sales and marketing processes. We have a particular focus on startups and an excellent command of HubSpot, with more than 120 HubSpot Certifications and over 65 five-star reviews in HubSpot's Partner Directory. Reach out!