Maximizing sales revenue is the ultimate goal behind any organizational partnership with a growth marketing agency. Selecting the right strategies and technology is the first step; once your growth marketing agency has put together a custom marketing stack, your leads need to be carefully managed in an ongoing process. And the longer your sales cycle, the more careful attention and data analysis is required to ensure that all qualified leads avoid falling through the gaps.
When marketing qualified leads slip through the cracks, deals stall causing damaging (and avoidable) loss for any sized organization. By managing the sales funnel and your pipeline, all prospects get the opportunity to be qualified as leads thus enabling internal growth marketing teams to meet their quotas and even redefine sales goals that once seemed out of reach.
How Growth Marketing Agencies Manage Leads
It is almost always the case that companies save time and money by partnering with top growth marketing agencies. They have years of proven experience and access to technology tools such as marketing automation and advanced CRMs that make the process more workable. As a growth marketing HubSpot partner in Los Angeles with more than 10 years of experience, our agency has been able to compile the most effective sales pipeline management tactics that oversee custom messaging and content automated to reach target buyers.
Here are three tips from our sales enablement playbook that will help your company reach its growth goals.
1. Ensure the Buyer’s Journey Aligns with the Pipeline
The buyer’s journey is going to be central to your pipeline management ability. This consists of the following:
Awareness Stage – This is when buyers identify a pain point or opportunity to pursue. At this phase they are still determining how committed they will be to finding a solution. Be sure to refer to your buyer personas to determine how target customers in this stage describe their pain points, how they educate themselves regarding these challenges, and what their misconceptions might be.
Consideration Stage – Buyers have defined their goal associated with the pain point or need and are committed to addressing it. Here, they review the various approaches to pursue the goal. Be sure to uncover data pertaining to what solution categories buyers research, what resources buyers use to educate themselves at this stage, and what pros and cons are perceived by buyers. You want to determine how the buyer ultimately decides which category is right for them.
Decision Stage – Here, buyers have decided on the solution to solve their problem. Be sure to understand the criteria buyers used to evaluate their options. You also want to nail down why buyers chose your brand and its products as opposed to a competitor. Finally, what are the buyer’s expectations?
You will be tempted to view the buyer’s journey stages from the sales organization side of things. Don’t make this mistake; instead look at the buyer’s journey from the customer’s point of view. No buyer ever thinks about their positioning in a pipeline; they are focused on resolving a problem. You may want to work with a growth marketing agency so they can train your marketing and sales teams on how to work together to move leads through to conversion. Growth marketing agencies also train internal teams on how to generate leads and create sales with a number of top-of funnel strategies.
2. Determine Data Analysis Metrics in Every Growth Marketing Strategy
Without advanced data analysis inbound sales would be impossible and your growth marketing strategy would fall flat. This means your organization must determine the best metrics to monitor and study engagement. Prioritize your sales pipeline KPIs so you have the ability to evaluate opportunities at a glance that will save your team valuable time so they don’t have to comb through deals on a case-by-case basis.
When deciding if the lead presents a good opportunity, look at the dollar amount VS. past sales. You may be tempted to chase a big one, but be realistic in gauging your likelihood of closing the deal and what resources would be necessary to try to pursue the lead. All too often egos get inflated and big game is chased, but there needs to be logic behind the move.
You will also want to see how old the opportunity is in order to determine if it is worth pursuing. If the lead has been aging like a cheese in the pipeline for considerable time, your likeliness of closing it will be slim. But don’t just toss this lead in the trash; determine where it came from and what lead up to it fermenting in the pipeline for such a long time so that these mistakes can be corrected and avoided.
You will also want to pay attention to the win rate. This can be determined by dividing the number of closed deals by all opportunities in that timeframe.
3. Optimize Your Pipeline with “Smarketing”
Once you have defined your data analysis metrics, you will want to adjust other specific pipeline components. Bringing sales and marketing teams together to address the details through careful collaboration is known as smarketing. Most sales and marketing teams clash, and if your organization hasn’t tried to correct this, you are wasting time and money. In fact, the best growth-driven marketing agencies offering inbound strategies should be able to come in to train and align these departments.
Here are some of the areas best suited for sales and marketing to work together in improving pipeline management:
Stage Progression Duration – Sales provides buyer data points and with the aid of marketing web content for that product or service is reviewed. This includes the CTAs. It should be determined whether or not sales if following up, and tools must be identified to salvage any lost leads so long as their shelf life is still good.
Skipping Stages – Sometimes customers find their way outside of the desired path you’ve set for them to follow. This typically happens when the content is not meeting their needs. When you have leaping lead stages it is challenging to guide them back and still keep them engaged. Sales and marketing can work together to ensure audience-targeting is spot-on in regards to the content meeting buyer needs.
Sales Qualifications – Not properly qualifying a sales lead can lead to potential customers throwing up valid excuses for not engaging or making a purchase. This is one of the most common reasons for non-conversion, and it causes a waste of valuable time and lost revenue. Sales and marketing can work together to create a robust sales qualification framework.
When sales and marketing come together to make these optimizations, a boost in revenue and productivity will result.
Moving a lead towards a deal requires a number of parts and people. This is why the process and the potential for complications can overwhelm a company, regardless of size. Growth marketing agencies like WEBITMD have a CRM that will make your life easier by streamlining your sales pipeline with little room for error. Marketing automation helps sales and marketing teams stay on top of their responsibilities while allowing for time to work together to set the foundation for a powerful sales pipeline and smooth management.
Want to Learn More?
Spending time to optimize your sales pipeline will continue to add value to your company. Be sure to use these tips, and if you need help improving your overall growth marketing efforts, download our FREE growth marketing stack guide below. Finally, if you have questions afterwards, give us a call and let’s shoot the breeze.