Get In Front Of Your Customers
In the past when a business leader said they needed to get in front of their customers they meant they needed to drop in and visit them. Now there is an entirely new meaning to this phrase: Leading clients through the sales cycle with a comprehensive marketing program that will appeal to them at each stage in the journey. Behavioral modeling and inbound marketing make it possible to get in front of your buyers’ needs and anticipate questions to create an ongoing conversation with them before they make their purchase decisions.
Organizations that are using behavioral modeling and inbound marketing methods are finding increased sales success by meeting prospects wherever they are in the buying process and starting a relevant conversation that facilitates development of the Know, Like and Trust trinity. Sounds great, right? But how do you accomplish this and get in front of prospects and customers?
The first step in the process is to create a buyer behavior model called The Buyer’s Journey. Determine what data you have about your clients to predict the buying cycle and compare that to the data you need to know to create a model that represents the buyer’s decision tree. If you already have sufficient data to build the model, you’re ahead of the game. If not, you will need to augment the data you have. This could be done using customer surveys, industry specific market behavior statistics, or with an automated inbound marketing program.
Once you have identified the buyer behavior model, you can establish a stage specific marketing plan and use it to determine where each prospect is in the buying cycle. This process requires a well-designed and measurable plan. The format and platform for the contacts could vary by audience, but by using targeted messages specific to each phase in the cycle, you can advance the buyer’s decision through each phase and improve your sales.
Collecting and analyzing buyer behavior data is not new. What is new is the use of the analysis to predict buying behavior and get in front of the buying decision cycle. Another new development is that, with available technology, we can more easily anticipate a prospect’s position in the buying cycle and personalize the messages we send to them to enhance conversion rates even when our only contact is through a website or Social Media. Google offers some tools, but you will need to customize the tools and dashboards to get the most from them.
There are a variety of inbound marketing automation tools available. These tools make it faster and easier to identify trends, track and analyze prospect behavior, and make an accurate determination of where each prospect is within that process. Which tool(s) you should use will depend on your strategy, goals, and budget. A marketing analyst/strategist, working with inbound marketing professionals, can help you choose and customize the best technology for your goals and budget.
If you want better sales and greater growth, think about getting out in front of your customers’ decisions.