The Buyer’s Journey. It is the classic sales map on how to take the customer through the process from awareness and consideration to deal negotiation and close. Looking at Al Morgan’s blog entitled Improving the Buyer’s Journey (and winning the deal), I wanted to applaud his thinking regarding the use of content in selling complex solutions today in a market where ubiquitous digital information has made the Buyer’s Journey significantly more convoluted. Al is an expert at business development and sales. He has been at the sharp end of the stick for 20+ years, so he knows what he is talking about.
The evolving Buyer’s Journey
For years, organizations have used the Buyer’s Journey to help sales representatives supply their customers with the information needed to move deals down the pipeline and, hopefully, to closure. This model helps businesses plan their marketing budgets and is the primary interaction point between sales and marketing. But, as Al points out in his blog, today’s ease of information access has greatly altered the Buyer’s Journey. Sales reps are engaged much later in the process by customers who feel they already have most of the information required to make their decision. The situation is further complicated by misinformation that is just as easily disseminated, resulting in sales reps having to work harder to counter misperceptions created in the market.
How can YOU be the first to add value in a noisy, disruptive environment?
It’s been noted that 74% of buyers choose to purchase from the sales rep that was the first to add value and insight. Customers need vendors to solve their business problem, not to just provide a bunch of products with new features. Digital assets, generally non-specific in nature, often fall short in supplying the content required that guides customers through the complete thinking process on how to solve their issues. Digital assets also suffer from the added disadvantage of limited customer interaction, being slightly more anonymous than a sales rep walking into the building and leaving some deliverables behind.
Businesses selling IT solutions are looking to understand how to best interact with customers in this new digital marketplace. They are adapting, adjusting, and augmenting their marketing assets, placing a heavier emphasis on digital content in response to the need to get there first. But they are grappling with whether to hire someone to specifically focus on social media or to bring on a solution-savvy sales rep. Should this additional marketing be outsourced? What can be outsourced? What works and what doesn’t, and what skill sets are really required? Determining all this takes time and resources away from the vendor’s ability to get there first. Is it possible that technology can help?
At Porter, unlike other Digital Marketing companies, we know that there isn’t just one answer to these questions. Instead, a combination of experience, knowing what questions to ask, and the ability to create the right deliverables at the right time – whitepapers, webinar, or many other types of assets – may be needed. Al Morgan, in his blog of September 6 on Medium, explores this evolution of the Buyer’s Journey and new methods that can help companies engaged in B2B sales adjust to it. He examines if specific marketing strategies such as email, web content, and social media marketing are successful. Most importantly, Al offers up some ideas around new technologies that can help, like Coservit.com’s LeadSeed, and tools and services from GetDisruptiv.
With such technology leadership expertise, our consultants at Porter Consulting can help you navigate the changes in this disrupted environment. If you’d like to explore opportunities working with Porter Consulting to achieve greater business success, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Brad is a 30 year veteran of marketing who understands the value of content that helps close business. You can find more blogs and content from Brad atwww.porterconsulting.net.