Does Your B2B Buyer Journey Work for Marketing AND Sales?
by Aden Andrus • July 31, 2020
Marketing is just part of the B2B customer journey. Once you’re on a potential customer’s radar, you have to make a smooth transition from marketing to sales.
Unfortunately, this can be a real hurdle for many B2B businesses.
Many of the clients that we’ve worked with have struggled to make their marketing work because they didn’t understand their customer journey. They didn’t know how to smoothly move prospects from the consideration phase into the decision phase and on to the testing phase.
How Marketing and Sales Fit Into Your Customer Journey
To run profitable marketing campaigns, your marketing team and sales team need to understand their position in your customer journey and how they relate to each other. Too often, marketing and sales operate in their own silos.
Marketing does their best to send good leads to the sales team. The sales team does their best to turn those leads into sales.
For your customers, however, their customer journey is one continuous process. They don’t fill out a form on your website and think, “I have entered the decision phase, so I’m going to forget everything I’ve seen, done or heard up to this point and start over from scratch.”
To your sales team, each new lead is a fresh start and a new opportunity. To your leads, this is just the latest step in an ongoing journey. If marketing and sales don’t work together to make that journey a seamless and enjoyable experience, your potential customers will get frustrated and back out.
Remember, leads typically convert because they believe your company can solve their problem. Your sales team’s job is to meet that expectation.
If sales tries instead to sell them something different than what your marketing promised, they’ll feel betrayed and lose interest. However, if the sales team’s response matches the marketing message, the lead will feel like reaching out was the right move.
To achieve this level of messaging consistency, sales needs to understand the expectations of their leads. This will take some extra work on your part, but it will make your sales team more effective…which makes your campaigns more profitable.
On the flip side, your sales team knows what messaging works best in the sales process and which leads are most receptive to your offer, so talking to sales can improve the effectiveness of your marketing efforts as well.
The more aligned your marketing and sales messaging is, the easier it will be to keep prospects moving through your customer journey.
One of the points of creating a buyer journey is to understand how your customers interact with your business at every stage in their journey. With that in mind, your journey should provide a smooth, continuous experience from beginning to end.
Each marketing campaign addresses customers in specific stages of their journey. By understanding that stage and your customers’ needs and expectations in that stage, you can become an integral part of their journey.
Your marketing and sales teams need to be well-aligned. The better they understand each other and how they fit into the customer journey, the easier it will be for them to provide a great experience for your customers, close deals and grow your business.
Marketing and sales should set your fulfillment team or process up for success. It costs a lot of money to close a new sale, so if your marketing and sales teams are setting the wrong expectations, you could be spending a lot of money away on the wrong deals.
Of course, this is just the tip of the iceberg. To learn more about B2B buyer journeys and how to put them to work for your B2B business, reach out to us here to get specific tips and advice for your business. Talk to you soon!