Is your sales team targeting buyers in the spotlight or buyers in the shadows?
The optimal choice is to target buyers who are engaging with your company and who are a good fit. Both types of salespeople, legacy and inbound, understand how to find their ideal buyers. However, the next step in analyzing if those particular ideal buyers are a good fit is where legacy salespeople fail and inbound salespeople thrive.
The first stage of the Inbound Sales Methodology is the Identify stage, where salespeople start to pinpoint leads from a large selection of strangers.
Unfortunately, legacy salespeople skip this step altogether. Instead of identifying active leads, they decide to connect with any leads that they feel are their ideal buyers. They use traditional marketing tactics like cold calling and buying mailing lists to generate leads.
On the other hand, inbound sales teams approach the Identify stage in a modern way. They analyze the market to see which leads are active within the buyer's journey. Additionally, inbound sales teams use technology to their advantage. With the proper software, they can determine:
- Who is visiting their website
- Who is opening their emails
- Who is converting from visitors to leads on their website
Of course, there are many metrics that inbound sales associates monitor to identify leads and determine fit for their company.
Inbound sales teams prioritize active buyers. If they approach passive buyers, they start the Identify stage before moving to the connect stage.
Let’s look further at active buyers versus passive buyers.
Active buyers are also known as inbound leads -- buyers who visit your website and submit forms to gain access to content. With inbound leads, it’s best to connect with them immediately, or you risk losing the opportunity.
There are a number of ways inbound sales teams identify leads -- but the secret to their success is the use of a CRM.
- Inbound sales teams integrate their website with their CRM, allowing them to receive lead data in real time.
- They can configure the CRM to alert them when a new lead is generated.
- If sales recognize that an inbound lead is not a good fit, they can transfer the lead to an “unqualified status.”
Not only does inbound sales track inbound leads, but they also track company engagement. Today, CRM systems allow you to see the company where an unnamed visitor works.
This information helps you to decide whether the company would be a good fit for your offerings. If they are a good fit, you could:
- Search for the decision maker at that company
- Create a contact within your CRM with the decision maker’s contact and company information
- Move the contact through the enrichment stage, and the connect stage of the Inbound Sales Methodology
Another way inbound salespeople reach out to their ideal market is through trigger events. A trigger event resembles the occurrence of one event that sparks another.
A trigger event could include noticing your ideal buyer published an article in a major publication -- prompting you to reach out to them by phone or by email. “Hey Bob, I saw your article in XYZ. That’s fantastic!”
The internet has made a tremendous difference in the power of buyers, but it has also strengthened the ability of salespeople to gather more information and reach out to buyers through increased trigger events.
Passive buyers are not as engaged as active buyers. They may be interested in your product and service offering. However, it’s very unlikely a passive buyer will exert a lot of effort toward the sales process.
The best way to reach out to passive buyers is through common connections, which include:
- Professional contacts
- Personal friends
- Family members with connections matching your ideal buyers.
Does your sales team use inbound methods to target active buyers? Let us know in the Comments below.
Are you interested in learning more about the Inbound Sales Methodology? If so, enroll now in our free 7-day eCourse: Go-to-Market Strategy 101 for B2B SaaS Startups and Scaleups.
Topics:- B2B Sales Strategy