As we become more and more digitally connected, it is easier for people to forget the importance of human connection. But when it comes to deploying effective demand generation solutions and campaigns, human touch is as important as it ever was!
SiriusDecisions recently debunked the myth that 67% of the buyer’s journey occurs digitally before talking with a sales rep. According to Jennifer Ross, Senior Research Director, CMO Strategies at SiriusDecisions, “B2B buyers interact with providers in a variety of ways throughout every phase of the decision-making process,” (Demand Gen Report). In addition to that, it was found that human-to-human interactions are more frequent in higher cost scenarios.
At Televerde, we know digital is incredibly important in raising brand awareness and expanding online reach. You want to provide prospects with a consistent diet of your brand’s name and messages, so digital can act as a supplement to the human conversation. However, blending digital and human touch is easier said than done.
It isn’t a secret that B2B buyers are some of the most complex to sell to. Due to the power of digital, buyers often have a working knowledge of the products or services you are offering, making it vital that you pair them with a sales rep that has equal knowledge. Incorrect pairings happen more often than you would think.
According to a 2015 SAP study, 75% of B2B buyers said they felt they were ahead of the salesperson who was supposed to be helping them. In this fast-paced digital world, we know these buyers don’t want to feel like their time is wasted.
Then how can you create an effective combination of the two? Check out three strategies we use to create the perfect marriage digital and human touch.
Marketing automation can be used to enhance your b2b lead generation services by improving lead management and streamlining the marketing and sales process. If you effectively use your marketing automation platform to collect accurate data of your current and prospective customers in order to deploy personalized campaigns, you will be able to move a larger volume of higher quality buyers through the pipeline faster. At Televerde, we maximize marketing automation platforms by setting up effective lead scoring, segmentation and nurturing programs to do just that.
While marketing automation platforms are active evolving tools to increase engagement and communications with your customer, they do not eliminate the need for human contact. Utilizing marketing automation to notify a sales rep to reach out to a lead at the right time with the right message is just one example of its power in shortening the sales cycle and increasing ROI.
In order to enable your sales teams with the best quality leads, you need to ensure you have lead qualification teams in place to truly marry digital campaigns and human interactions. You need to determine the stage which a marketing-qualified lead is passed on to sales and successfully use phone-based qualification resources to ask those qualifying questions during the interim.
With 88% of B2B buyers saying they want to feel good about their purchase decision based on guidance and trust they have with their vendor, it is important these conversations are present and go well (2015 SAP study). During this process, lead qualification teams can discover a buyer’s needs, establish a relationship, and most importantly, build trust. This will increase the number of “sales-ready” leads that are passed on to sales teams for advancement to prevent clogging your pipeline with unqualified leads and an overinflated sales forecast.
The last part of this perfect marriage is lead nurturing. We love lead nurturing at Televerde and understand the vital role it should play during the buyer’s journey. According to MarketingSherpa, 79% of marketing leads never convert into sales. This makes us sad because lack of lead nurturing tends to be common in this poor performance!
When combining marketing automation and human-to-human interactions, you can create powerful lead nurturing campaigns that effectively guide your customer through each stage of the buyer’s journey to close. From personalized emails to perfectly-timed sales calls, lead nurturing allows you to stay present and ahead of competition in this digitally-connected world.
The more digitally interconnected we become, don’t make the mistake of forgetting about the importance of real human connection. The digital side of marketing is undeniably important, but no matter how sophisticated technology becomes, nothing beats genuine human contact.