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Sales and Marketing: Share the Funnel to Move the Funnel

By December 19, 2016August 13th, 2017Inbound Marketing

This blog post is part of “The Ultimate Guide to Lead Generation” blog series.

Digital marketing recognizes how the way people buy products has changed. Search engines have become so useful in helping people find information and solutions on their own, that the vast majority of B2B and B2C buyers research companies, products, and solutions before deciding to contact of a supplier.

According to Google, B2B buyers make an average of 12 searches before contacting a company. Digital marketing is all about engaging buyers in this process–creating web pages and offers that will help buyers find the right solution. With good digital marketing, companies can better control the conversation as buyers seek solutions.

alanizSource: Google

The Right Offer for the Right Person

Engaging buyers online as they search for a solution is as much a part of the sales process as it is the marketing process. Yes, you’re trying to build awareness about your company, product, and brand, but this is also where a potential customer will enter the top of the sales funnel. It is important to tune the content you produce and place online to attract multiple target audiences–investors, media, the general public, and customers.

It is important for sales and marketing to work together in this engagement process when it comes to targeting customers. Sales teams understand the questions customers ask, the pain points that they experience, the language they use to look for solutions, and they benefits that they will respond to. All of this information is critical in creating content and offers that will attract potential customers to your website and convert them to qualified leads.

Shared the Funnel

The sales/marketing engagement process allows companies to present the right offer to the right person at the right time. It is important to have offers for people that are just beginning to look for solutions, for people that are comparing available solutions, and for people that are ready to select a solution. It is also important to know the signals that indicate when someone is in each of these phases for the buying journey.

Marketing and sales will both be most effective if they work together in the customer engagement process. Agreeing on target audiences, buyer needs and desires, buying cycle stages and indicators, and sales qualification criteria will help marketing create content, offers, and automated workflows that help the company get found by people looking for the solutions your company offers and engage these people with the information that they are looking for. This in-turn will increase the quality and quantity of your web traffic, convert traffic into leads and convert leads into customers.

Move the Funnel

As sales and marketing collaborate on the customer engagement process, it will become more and more efficient. By creating content and offers aimed at different types of customers–different industries, for example, or even specific accounts–you will learn what people like and don’t like, what types of content and channels are most effective. You might find that in some cases people respond to video, while in other markets people respond to product reviews.

Make it Easy

In the end, your goal is to make it is as easy as possible for the people that are looking for solutions like yours to find you, and to present them with the information that they are looking for in the way that they are comfortable accessing it and consuming it. Ideally, you’ll find that the people that find your company is glad that they did, and are happy to contact you because they have found a solution to a pressing business problem.

This blog post is part of “The Ultimate Guide to Lead Generation” blog series.