B2B Customer Acquisition: The role of human engagement in a world of digital-first enterprise marketing
It starts with sales getting clarity on who their ideal customer is and developing a profile for each one by researching and documenting key information.
What does digital-first sales look like in today’s B2B sales and marketing landscape and how is it changing the way that we engage with customers?
The optimum approach is the combination of account-based marketing and account-based selling, also known as ABX. It starts with sales getting clarity on who their ideal customer is and developing a profile for each one by researching and documenting key information. Then they hyper-focus on this small group of highly qualified prospects who have effectively been blueprinted.
From there, marketing sets up what is referred to as ‘cadences’, which is a communication path, or touch points, that includes a series of calls, emails and gifting to connect and stay in touch with prospects on their buyer journey. Sales also connects with these prospects at live events and through thought leadership workshops. There’s no one way, but what’s important is there is a set methodology and a sync between sales and marketing about how and when to reach out to those highly qualified, prospective buyers.
It is really important to know the customer’s business, their successes, their pain points, and how they have been performing – before you reach out to them.
Sellers are more likely than buyers to think face to face contact is important during sales, does this mean B2B sales teams should be investing more in virtual sales techniques?
The key to successful virtual engagements with potential customers is hyper-personalisation. Marketing writes ‘cadences’ that sales teams can use, but they are expected to personalise each cadence before reaching out to a prospect. This doesn’t mean just adding someone’s name or inviting them for coffee. It’s getting to know them as well as you can and connecting on a personal level. Perhaps you know they’re big fans of a particular sports team, and their team just won a big game; this is a great way to facilitate a connection on a more personal level.
It is really important to know the customer’s business, their successes, their pain points, and how they have been performing – before you reach out to them. A customer or prospect should never have to feel they need to educate you about their business.
What role do live events play in a post-pandemic B2B sales environment?
Workshops are a highly effective strategy for bringing industry leaders into the conversation. They’re useful to participants because it is a forum to share success and industry knowledge. In my experience, industry leaders want to reveal their authentic sides and connect with people.
The most successful events involve those where participants have strong industry experience and established credibility. That, combined with the online digital model, is the dream.