Shortening the sales cycle, increasing order size, and bettering company practices can be daunting tasks. All of this could be managed with ease though if B2B companies harnessed and broke down Big Data. These five steps will help you get the most out of your data.
To start off, you must understand which data sources you are currently using to target and inform sales and marketing efforts. Most companies have a marketing automation platform, sales platform, CRM system, and firmographic data for their customers and prospects.
Identify data that you could use for targeting your sales and marketing efforts. Check with IT, sales, and marketing to develop the full inventory of data that is captured and stored. Sometimes you’ll find a valuable data source isn’t being used simply because nobody has asked for it.
Allow your imagination to run wild and create a data wish list to help meet all your objectives. This may consist of data that is hard to capture and digitize, third-party sources, or primary research. Everything comes with costs and challenges (otherwise it’d have already be done) but you should always know what options are out there and their cost/benefit analysis.
Once all the data sources have been evaluated and collected, you’ll need to make it real by creating a vision and action plan. How will this Big Data deliver more relevant marketing and advertising? Will your sales representatives have more insightful conversations? Decide upon this and show senior leadership that the benefit will outweigh the cost by improving practices, enabling new strategies, and delivering a strong ROI.
This is the most crucial yet difficult step. To effectively use Big Data, you’ll need to steam multiple data sources into one customer/prospect view. This involves navigating corporate politics (and data fiefdoms), making your case, and having a way to leverage the data to sell more effectively.
Leveraging Big Data is not easy, but if done effectively it can be a competitive advantage and help you meet and exceed your business objectives.
The sales process has changed dramatically in the past 5 years and customers now have detailed information on all your products, services, and those of your competitors. Many times, customers won’t engage until they need specific information about how your company can solve their most burning problems.
Ideally marketing efforts turn “seekers” into prospects and sales converts prospects into customers. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always come together the way it’s designed. Though the sales team may get the leads, few insights come along with them which produces low conversion rates. This leaves sales and marketing wondering how they can improve the process. The answer – analytics!
Analytics for B2B organizations uses the available data, across all departments, to understand who the prospect is, what they want, and the amount of effort sales needs to pursue them. Analytics can predict what prospects and customers will do, when they will do it, and how to tip the scales in your favor.
Here are 3 examples of how analytics could help you.
Not all customers are created equal. Putting it as clear as possible: your company (and your sales reps) can make more money from some than from others. So, it makes sense for your time, energy, and budget investments to target customers and prospects with the highest CLV potential. Organizations can develop prediction models by analyzing what is being purchased, margins, frequencies, firmographics, sales interactions, and service costs.
After working hard to find and win new customers, seeing them spend less or leave altogether is tough to deal with. Knowing who you should be concerned about and developing strategies to keep them satisfied, is key to retaining customers. By integrating data from multiple data sources such as product sales, customer service issues, trends in buying behavior, and more, you can implement trigger strategies and build predictive models to retain at-risk customers.
Nobody likes being sold something they don’t need or want. However, even though we may not want to admit it, having a sales rep offer you a product that you are ready to buy is refreshing (and makes your life easier).
Of course, it’s not easy to read minds and know what people want but using data analytics is close. By integrating data and knowing customers’ behavior, a skilled analyst can build a predictive model identifying which products they are most likely to buy. This enables Sales and Marketing to direct the right product offers to the right people at the right time.
Customers do business with vendors who deliver value. By leveraging analytics throughout sales and marketing, your team brings knowledge and insights to every call that customers appreciate. Cogensia takes a data-driven approach to sales automation that brings together Sales and Marketing while shortening the sales cycle. Learn how we can increase your sales and marketing productivity to shorten the sales cycle and drive higher conversions rates.
During the first week of December, Cogensia joined 150 marketing leaders at the 2016 Engagement & Experience Expo hosted by Loyalty 360. The conference featured speakers from a variety of industries talking about what they are doing to focus not only marketing, but their entire business model on their customers.
What is working – While I wasn’t able to attend all of the sessions (many hard choices on which breakouts to attend is the sign of a great conference!) those I did attend had a common thread to success – data. Ulta spoke on the value of data integration and what they call the “Golden Customer Record”. Goodwill Industries and Driven Brands discussed how customer segmentation was key to the success they are seeing within their brands. Fanatics stressed how important it is to use your data to know your customers, and based on the results they are seeing it is hard to argue with that advice.
Best Session – For those of us who attended the final session of the conference we were treated to an outstanding workshop on Innovation. Anyone looking for an energetic speaker on business process and Innovation – Jose Pires from Black & Veatch is your answer. Everyone in the room was quickly engaged with Jose’s message on how innovations can come from anywhere in an organization, many times resulting from novice curiosities that challenge existing ways of thinking and unlock value previously unattainable. And the golf ball exercise was excellent!
Congratulations – Congratulations to all of the CX Awards finalists! I had the privilege of moderating 3 award categories where finalists presented their submission in categories of Employee Engagement, Customer Insights, and Business Transformation. I was so impressed with the work these finalists have done for their respective companies and how they are changing the ways their brands interact with their customers. We all benefit from the work you are doing! A full list of categories and winners can be found on http://www.engagementexpo.com/
Overall, I would say that we have reached the point where customers expect brands to use the data they have (preferences, behaviors, purchase history) to enhance the customer experience, and this conference highlight several brands who are doing just that. For those of you looking to grow your customer experience knowledge I recommend you add this conference to your list of “must attend”.
CIOReview has recognized Cogensia as one of the 20 most promising data integration solution providers of 2016! In the article below, learn more about Cogensia’s Customer Management Platform and their award-winning data integration, analytics, and deployment capabilities. Read the full article here.