B2B Customer Acquisition: The role of human engagement in a world of digital-first enterprise marketing
As a marketer, if you don't have a very good grasp of what your typical buyer looks like and how to reach them, then you can be sure that a significant amount of resource wastage in your efforts.
How can marketers reach new generations of decision makers?
In the coming years, businesses need to be more intentional with their marketing if they want new generations of decision makers to purchase from them. Over the past ten years there has been a significant increase in the number of marketing tools and automations available. Instead of making marketers smarter, these tools have actually had the opposite effect. Marketers have used them to cast their net as wide as possible, leveraging technology to reach incredible numbers of people, in the hope that a few will get ‘caught’ in the net as customers. But we are seeing budgets starting to tighten and as a result, marketers need to identify and prioritize channels and programs that provide the most return on investment. A healthy marketing efficiency benchmark is 10x, i.e. for every marketing dollar spent, we should generate $10 in sales accepted pipeline.
So for marketers, it’s time to unlearn the habits of the last ten years and effectively start from the ground up. As a marketer, if you don't have a very good grasp of what your typical buyer looks like and how to reach them, then you can be sure that a significant amount of resource wastage in your efforts. Identify the companies that are a good fit for your offering first, establish who their decision makers and buying groups are, what top of mind right now for them, and where they naturally spend their time. This might be very different from the previous generation of decision-makers. For example: in some industries, more B2B professionals are spending time weekly on LinkedIn to network and learn about new best practices. In other industries or segments, trade shows and conferences are the place of choice. If businesses can follow these fundamental steps, then they have a good chance of converting new generations of decision-makers into customers.
If a prospect is confident that you understand the challenges they are facing, then they are far more likely to engage with your marketing and ultimately consider your offering.
What can marketing teams do to help their sales team get smarter with social selling efforts?
Everyday decision makers in businesses receive multiplied LinkedIn requests that are followed by an immediate sales pitch, along with dozens of cold emails and other forms of lazy pitching. Sellers assume that the individual knows they need a solution and dive straight into their offering. In the early awareness stages, Marketers should equip their sales teams with an understanding of the challenges the buyers are facing. Sellers should also aim to give first, e.g. providing value, and thoughtfully engaging with the buyer's content on LinkedIn, before asking for a meeting. If a prospect is confident that you understand the challenges they are facing, then they are far more likely to engage with your marketing and ultimately consider your offering.
Marketing teams also need to make sure that their sales colleagues understand and embrace the messaging approach so that target customers have a consistent sales experience. If the two departments are not aligned in their efforts then prospects can become confused and even start to distract the brand. To create a cohesive sales and marketing team, then both departments need to be measured by the same goal - revenue. Once both teams are pulling in the same direction together, the sharing of information and tasks becomes far more meaningful.
Your buyers are professionals who are, most likely, always looking for opportunities to enhance their personal brand. If you can help them to build their personal brand, then there is a huge amount of trust and favour that you can win from them as a result.
Vice President of Marketing
What value does helping to build the personal brand of your buyers bring?
Social media makes it easier than ever to build a personal brand and establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry. Your buyers are professionals who are, most likely, always looking for opportunities to enhance their personal brand. If you can help them to build their personal brand, then there is a huge amount of trust and favour that you can win from them as a result. In the first instance, simply comment on their LinkedIn posts to help build their engagement and reach. Make sure it’s not a generic comment though or they may just view it as spammy! This approach is great for both prospecting new customers AND keeping in touch with your existing customers. The added bonus of engaging socially with existing customers is that when they move jobs, they become buyers again. So if you’ve been able to help them build their brand, it’s highly likely that your business will be one of the very first they contact in their new roles.
UserGems is a pipeline generation software that helps revenue teams generate and protect revenue efficiently. With UserGems, companies can track and automate outreach when their champions change their jobs, and capture the buying groups to find the warmest path into every account.
Companies like Mimecast, Greenhouse, Medallia use UserGems to reach their revenue goals, quickly and efficiently.
UserGems is a private company headquartered in San Francisco but has a distributed team across the world.