The end of the calendar year is drawing to a close and for many businesses, a new fiscal year is quickly approaching. We’ve seen a lot of companies trying to do more with fewer resources, whether that be a reduced budget or lower headcount. With a potential recession looming, businesses have started to tighten their belts. And for sales and marketing teams, a strong performance in Q4 is vital.
It’s common for B2B businesses to experience decreasing conversions towards the end of the year. As sales and marketing leaders become laser-focused on closing the year strong, unspent budget is not top of mind. At least, not unless it can be used to produce immediate results. However, it’s imperative to use it before you lose it. And by using remaining budget on the right things now, you’ll be setting your team up for a better, less stressful FY23. You don’t have to lose focus on closing open opportunities this year to better plan for next year. And in the face of a recession, spending wisely and proactively will likely increase your chances of that budget being reissued.
According to a LinkedIn B2B Institute Study, only 20% of B2B buyers are in the market for new goods or services in a given year and only 5% are in the market in a given quarter. The other 95% are not in the market at all. As businesses look to reduce spending, the number of buyers in-market is likely to shrink. That means sales and marketing teams need to do everything they can to reach all of those buyers with relevant, impactful information if they want to be considered. To meet revenue goals, more proactive strategies are needed. Let’s look at some of the high-impact things you can do now that will provide ROI into the next fiscal year and beyond.
Conduct Market Research
With companies pulling back on new spending, it’s vital to ensure that your marketing content and sales outreach are being seen by the right prospects at exactly the right time. One of the best ways to improve your targeting is by conducting market research.
Market research provides important information about your overall market and business landscape. You will have the unique opportunity to understand the buyers within your space, what key items they consider when purchasing a solution such as yours, and how and where they look for information when evauating. You can also learn how your company is perceived by the customers and prospects you want to reach. It can also help you understand how best to connect with them, show you how you stack up compared to your competitors and most importantly, inform how you plan your next steps.
Market research is a key component in developing strong marketing strategies and execution plans, and provides a fact-based foundation for estimating sales and profitability. Few organizations have the ability internally to directly connect with the volumes of prospects or customers that it takes to get an appropriate sample of data required to draw these insights, which is why outsourcing your market research can be a valuable part of your end of year planning. A good outsourcing partner will be able to provide you with high-quality data that you can use to inform your strategy for next year while allowing your in-house team to focus on closing the year strong.
Invest in Automation Tools
Take a moment to think about how your demand generation and lead nurture campaigns are executed. Have you noticed any gaps or pain points? Did you have a problem keeping track of multiple projects or issues targeting the right customer with the right messages across multiple platforms? Has your sales team been bogged down by administrative work when they could be spending more time nurturing relationships with customers and prospects?
Consider adding a sales and/or marketing automation platform when deciding how to spend your remaining budget. According to Hubspot, 61% of businesses leveraging automation reported exceeding revenue targets in 2020. And a study conducted by Hinge Research indicates that companies that incorporate high-level automation into their sales process generate around 16% more leads compared to those that incorporate low-level or no automation.
You’ll be amazed by what sales and marketing automation can do for your business by automatically managing key processes and multifunctional campaigns, across multiple channels. And you already use a sales marketing automation platform, now is a great time to refresh.
Train and Upskill Your Teams
Keeping up with constantly shifting market conditions and customer needs can be tough for any business. It becomes even harder when sales and marketing teams are behind the curve and lack the latest skills and information. Beyond that, professional development opportunities are fulfilling, especially for younger employees. A recent LinkedIn Workforce Learning Report indicates that over a quarter of young workers shared that they consider learning to be one of the biggest drivers of workplace satisfaction.
Training and upskilling opportunities, like certification courses, networking opportunities, and development conferences for your sales and marketing teams are a valuable way to use your remaining budget before you lose it. It can help your organization put your best foot forward and build your competitive advantage.
An Option You May Not Have Considered – Outsourcing
What if we told you that you could gain all of the advantages and benefits of the above options all at once. Too good to be true? Not really, when you choose the right outsourcing partner.
The end of the year is stressful enough as sales and marketing teams work hard to ensure all their goals are met. Whether you need an end of year boost or want a strong start in the new year, outsourcing key sales and marketing processes can be one of the most effective ways to deploy your sales or marketing budget. When you partner with an outsourced sales and marketing services provider like Televerde, you get high-quality market research data, the latest marketing and sales automation tools and a dedicated, tenured team of expert agents with the skills and training needed to drive pipeline and revenue growth for your business.
What’s more, outsourcing allows you to supplement your internal sales and marketing teams and provides a valuable buffer when dealing with employee turnover and staffing issues. It also allows your business to move away from large capital expenditures in staffing, infrastructure, equipment, and real estate. An outsourcing partner assumes those risks for you, and as an operational expense, it makes it easier to scale while mitigating risk and circumventing issues such as hiring freezes.
An outsourced team of sales development representatives (SDRs) or business development representatives (BDRs) can help grow your current pipeline, nurture existing leads, support your channel partners, and build greater alignment between your sales and marketing teams. Investing individually in market research, automation tools and professional development can provide incredible value to your business. However, spending your “use it before you lose it” budget to bring in an outsourcing partner that can provide all of that and more likely represents the best “bang for your buck.”