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Are Identity and Access Management Vendors Being Found Early Enough?

The internet has monumentally changed the way the consumer Are Identity and Access Management Vendors Being Found Early Enough?buying process works today. Decision makers looking for identity and access management software use search engines and social media to thoroughly research service packages, compare pricing, and check for reviews. They also look to trusted advisors who post information and advice on social media.

Access to this depth and variety of information has allowed buyers to make up their minds long before they approach a vendor. A Consumer Executive Board (CEB) survey estimated consumers are typically anywhere from 57% to 70% through the decision-making process before sending inquiries to vendors. Consequently, businesses must seriously reevaluate how they are approaching consumers.

Inbound Marketing

The old marketing playbook consisted of cold calls, direct mail campaigns, and advertising emails. Buyers today resent unsolicited demands for their attention and block them using caller ID, ad blockers, spam filters and, for direct mail, the garbage can. They prefer to search online and make their decisions based on credible information, peer reviews, and advice from a trusted authority.

Vendors who want to remain relevant in their industry must allow themselves to be approachable early on in the purchase cycle. The best way to do this is via inbound marketing, which uses blogs, whitepapers, social media, an optimized website, and similar tools to allow customers to come to them.

Content is Key

The easiest way to get found is by showing up on the first page of a Google search. SEO(search engine optimization) requires vendors to develop excellent content target audiences will want to read, act on, and share. The content must also be fresh to incentivize potential customers to keep coming back. The best solution is a regularly updated blog whose entries are easy to remark on and share via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social media platforms. The more exposure, the higher the content may appear on search engine results pages.

Go Social

First-rate service and useful content are only a portion of the battle when it comes to being found early. It is imperative vendors find ways to drive more traffic to their content.

Social media is a powerful tool for this type of exposure. Businesses are strongly encouraged to sign up the ‘Big Three’—Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn—, to participate in conversations. Once the interests, needs, and goals of potential customers are recognized, the company can draw them in by content to address those categories. It is important to avoid ‘sales-speak’; instead, focus on what the client needs and share information that will help or interest them.

Become a Trusted Advisor

Every area of business has trusted advisors that share their area of expertise and cultivate an online following who respect their recommendations and advice. It is widely recognized many consumers base their purchasing decisions on their perceptions of and/or relationship with the salesperson/vendor.

Businesses must come across as wanting to help their clients to earn the reputation of trusted advisors, instead of simply wanting to make a sale. They also must demonstrate credibility, competence, and a willingness to assist others in making the right choice for their particular needs.

Bottom Line

The changes ways people purchase goods and services make it especially important for vendors to be on their customer’s radar in the early buying process. Search engine visibility, valuable content, and recognized expertise will earn vendors a competitive advantage.

Has being discovered early in the buying process benefited your business? Let us know in the Comments below.

To learn more about how identity and access management vendors can be found early enough in the buying cycle, be sure to watch the free, on-demand “Identity Management Revenue Growth Acceleration Q&A Webinar”


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