Hundreds of articles tell you that you need to establish relationships with your customers or they tell you about how the buyer has changed.  How many provide you with a comprehensive overview of exactly how to do it?

sales_ladderIf you have been paying attention at all, you know that today’s buyers are not responding to the pushy sales methods from the past.  You know that prospective buyers want to “discover” your product or service – because they don’t trust anything you tell them about why they should purchase.  These skeptical buyers are consuming as much as ever, but they may not be buying from your company if you have not discovered a way to market in this digital age.

Internet Leads Can Be a Waste of Time and Money

Some will tell you to use the internet to attract potential buyers to your company.  That sounds well and good, but no amount of SEO can replace the old ways of advertising.  In fact, with many internet marketing strategies, it is still “push” advertising.  The only difference is that it takes place on the internet.

Instead, successful marketers have discovered ways to embrace technology in a way that turns the old marketing monologue into an ongoing customer-engaged dialogue.

You must give the buyer all the power to choose.  Sure, they have the power to choose already.  If you have not implemented a plan for being visible to buyers – without pushing your company – they are very likely to choose someone else.  This is a very brief overview of what we know works.  You can find out more by checking out the webinars and eBooks that are available free in the Sales Growth Series.

  1. Describe your best customers.  Outline in detail their age bracket, location, income level, industry, size of company, level within the organization and anything else you can find common among your most loyal and profitable current clients.  That description becomes the “persona” of your best buyers.
  2. Use an online database to find people who meet the description you outlined above and make sure the records include an email address.  The best company we have found is Lead Ferret.  They have more than 10 million records that you can access free.  Go check it out.  SalesNexus subscribers get 500 free contacts each month.
  3. Download new prospects into your CRM (Customer Relationship Manager).  If you use a company like SalesNexus, the integrated email along the client records make everything happen much smoother.
  4. Send an email that addresses the customer’s pain.  Your product or service resolves something for your customers.  Your best prospects are currently experiencing that pain.  In a very simple, brief email, show the prospect that you understand their pain – but don’t try to solve it in the email.  Let the email guide the prospect to your solution by giving them a link to a content piece that clearly explains what you have to offer.  Still, don’t try to sell to them.  Buyers are more likely to trust you if you just give them information and avoid the sales pitch.
  5. Communicate with clicks and opens.  Sorry for using internet lingo here.  You want a salesperson to contact each person who has “raised their hand” by clicking on the contact piece.  They will inquire about whether the information helped and also qualify the prospect as a buyer.  Remain helpful and not salesy.  Even the ones who only opened the email are worth calling.  The purpose of the call is to learn which prospects need an appointment to discuss what you have to over.
  6. Nurture the ones who aren’t ready yet.  Buyers have a right to be skeptical and cautious.  Earn their trust over time by continuing to send useful information.  What you send should be valuable even if they never decide to purchase from you.  At the very least, you have gained the trust of someone who has at least a little interest in what you offer.  That is not a bad thing.
  7. Build lots of business benefits.  This would be a great result of automation if increased sales were the only result.  But there is more.  You will also gain information about your best customers, comprehensive reports that help you forecast sales and an efficient sales process that keeps the sales professionals on your team.

See a step by step process to follow in our recent webinar and ebook – “The Magic 5 of Content Based Email Campaigns that Drive Sales”.