sales team

All posts tagged sales team

Why your Buyer Personas Need the Sales Team’s Customer Insight

by Joanne Dolezal on 29th March 2018

Are your customers just a blur of names and data? In the latest blog on how your sales team can support your content marketing, we look at the importance of buyer personas and the valuable customer insights your customer facing teams have as the first line of contact with them.

So, what exactly goes into developing your Buyer Personas?

Selecting the right dimensions or shared characteristics to include can be hard for the marketing team. In many organisations, the marketing team never gets to meet the customer and has very little sense of who they are.

Customer insight + relevance = customer value + £sales.

This is where the sales and customer facing teams come in. They may have better information, insight, because they’re in contact with your customers daily and hear what they say:

  • What is your target customer’s desired experience?
  • What do they want the outcome to be: a relief from some kind of irritation or the holiday of a lifetime?
  • Are you trying to solve a problem, or fulfill their dreams and desires?
  • No less important: who are they buying for?

B2C Buyer Personas include…

In consumer marketing (B2C), you may be selling to the purchaser in the household, but not the actual user, e.g. toiletries for younger teens, but bought by mum! You need to know who they’re buying for and why, what they value about their purchase and what the pressures are on them in order to buy.

When you develop personas, you can think about typical challenges or issues the person is facing, or a day in the life of. Think about their information sources: are they mobile users, active on social media or do they prefer print ads?

It can be helpful to get some magazines and pull out pictures of the kind of things this person would like, the brands they would like or even a picture that looks like them.

Then, think of their common objections – what reasons do they give for not doing something?

They may say things like: “I would, but…” or “We haven’t yet, because…”

Sales people are fantastic at surfacing and then dealing with these objections, because that’s what they’re really good at.

B2B Buyer Personas include…

With commercial / enterprise customers (B2B), you may need slightly different information, because largely they’re buying for the organisation. You may be marketing to one of the buying ‘team’ – not always the end-user. Depending on how big and important that purchase is, it may leave them feeling anxious and exposed, particularly if they’re in a project management role. They’ll worry about everything that could go wrong, that colleagues will hate it or find fault once they start using it.

We’ve all been in that position, where we’re project managing something new and championing it, but you may be feeling exposed. Everybody in the organisation who’s using or paying for it will have an opinion.

Either way, developing buyer personas will help you to reach the hearts and minds of customers just like them. This will help you to create content that is personal, relevant, honest and reassuring.

If there is no sales team…

You may not have a sales team. You may be the sales team, along with marketing and every other business function.

You may need to work around the sales team, for whatever reason. Overstretched, poor communication, or needing that extra dimension.

Because if it’s a past customer, you also have the opportunity to go back and ask:

“What problem did we solve for you?

How has it impacted your business?

What are the positive changes you’ve seen?”

We know what is involved in developing buyer personas. They take time, research, testing and repetition before they ‘stand up’ but it’s important for marketing to move away from assumptions, hypotheses, “business as usual”.

What is the reward?

Your customers have never had so much choice, and so much information at their fingertips.

Do they choose you?

Or do they choose a competitor who speaks their language, shares their interests and publishes content that looks and sounds like them?

Our online course, Content Marketing Conquered, takes you through everything you need to know about developing Buyer Personas. We also help you develop your online value proposition. Oh, and there’s a deep audit, content generation framework and guidance on how to build a a ‘proper plan’ around it.

One that reflects you. And your goals.

We’ll be looking at how to involve the sales team more in your content marketing in this series of blogs.

What key insights can marketers learn from the sales team?

It’s not easy to get sales and marketing working in harmony but we share tips and real life examples from the sales and marketing teams we’ve worked with – saving you time, money and heartache.

We hope you’ve enjoyed Why Your Sales Team holds the key to Content Marketing. Why not check out the other blogs in the series:

Or if video is your preferred content type, click here to view the recording.

Our new online programme Content Marketing Conquered is designed with you in mind. Based on our successful workshop programme and latest strategies, we guide you to the top in 6 easy steps.

Don’t leave without grabbing your free eBook.

 

Photo by mauro mora on Unsplash
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Joanne DolezalWhy your Buyer Personas Need the Sales Team’s Customer Insight

Why Your Sales Team Holds the Key to Content Marketing

by Joanne Dolezal on 4th March 2018

Content marketing is becoming ever more important to drive sales. Regardless of the type of company, your marketing team are working harder than ever to understand what this new type of customer wants. It’s time to harness what the sales team knows about your customers and what they really want.

Most often, marketers are not customer-facing and don’t spend time with customers the way the sales team does. Or customer services, account managers, service engineers and so on.

There has never been a better time for sales and marketing to work more closely together. Here’s why:

Content marketing is used for brand awareness, customer acquisition and customer retention.

It’s significantly less expensive than traditional forms of marketing.

And customers are also buying in a different way.

But the marketing team don’t know always what customers want.

Peter Drucker famously said:

“the aim of marketing is to make selling unnecessary.”

This doesn’t mean making the sales team unnecessary! Marketers can sometimes think, wrongly, that if what they do is great, the job is done. But it’s the sales team or other customer-facing colleagues that really build the relationship with customers.

Peter Drucker also said:

“The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well, the product or service fits him and sells itself.”

This is a tall order, especially if the marketing team never speak to customers, they don’t get to hear how they describe themselves or what they really want from us.

This makes it impossible to create marketing that gets inside their hearts and minds. Unless you involve the members of your team who regularly meet with, speak to or listen to objections from… your customers.

Content marketing is a newish form of marketing, which has really developed in the last five or six years; a lot of it is in response to changes in consumer behaviour, their access to the internet and multiple sources of information about products and services, as well as access to other customer reviews. Buyers are influenced by their friends on social media, what other people buy and how they feel about it.

Your customers are now very well-informed.

Increasingly, people want to find this information on your website or within the content you’ve created for them. “Content” is basically the copy that you create, the words that you use, pictures, graphics, audio (podcasts or narration) or video (webinars, animations, how-to guides). Most importantly, it is self-published so you are in control of what is being said or shown by you.

Sometimes, we know customers make a quick purchase and their need is fulfilled in a few minutes. Other times, it may be months or even years before you’re finished and have delivered what they bought from you.

It’s the stuff that people want to know, the tricky questions customers present and the things they’ll ask you face to face. Or your customer-facing colleagues.

We’ll be looking at how to involve the sales team more in your content marketing in this series of blogs.

What key insights can marketers learn from the sales team?

It’s not easy to get sales and marketing working in harmony but we share tips and real life examples from the sales and marketing teams we’ve worked with – saving you time, money and heartache.

We hope you’ve enjoyed Why tour Sales Team holds the key to Content Marketing. Why not check out the other blogs in the series:

Or if video is your preferred content type, click here to view the recording.

Our new online programme Content Marketing Conquered is designed with you in mind. Based on our successful workshop programme and latest strategies, we guide you to the top in 6 easy steps.

Don’t leave without grabbing your free eBook.

 

read more
Joanne DolezalWhy Your Sales Team Holds the Key to Content Marketing

Why your Sales Team holds the key to Content Marketing Video

by Joanne Dolezal on 15th January 2017

Sales and content marketing? What do the sales team have to do with content marketing? Or customer services? Or your service and site engineers, for that matter?

Your marketing team may have the customer data you need to market to the people on your database. But do they have the real customer insights you need to get results?

Content Marketing is most effective when it gets inside your customer’s head, speaks to their wants and needs and nestles closely to their heart. But for sales to occur, content marketing needs to attract and nurture your target customers.

Welcome to your sales team.  Your sales team hold the key to your content marketing.

Your sales team knows what your customers want.

Why?

Because they’re on the front line when it comes to the problems customers face, to the questions they ask – and they know the actual language that’s used when your customers describe their issues.

But how do you get everyone around the table and translate the sales’ teams insight into compelling content marketing?

This video will show you how to tap into this customer expertise and create Content Marketing your customers will love.

We want to be able to help business owners and marketers like you who are looking for a digital marketing consultant or sound advice, anywhere in the world.

In this video we take you through:

Check out the blog series that accompanies this video.

Questions answered included:

  1. our Sales team knows what the customer wants NOW but our Marketing team are working months in advance – how do you bring the two together?
  2. how do you make sure that we are consistent as a brand in all forms of communication so as to avoid confusing the customer?
  3. our marketing team are focused on building our brand, our sales team want leads and enquiries right now. How do we achieve both?
  4. if we can’t our sales and marketing staff to cooperate on other things, how will we ever get them working together on content marketing?
  5. what is the ROI of content marketing?
  6. how long does it take for sales to increase from content marketing?

If you enjoy our video “Why your Sales Team hold the key to Content Marketing” why not download your free guide:

“Top 10 Questions for Your Sales Team”

Look our for our online courses, starting Spring 2018. 

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Photo by Daria Nepriakhina on Unsplash

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Joanne DolezalWhy your Sales Team holds the key to Content Marketing Video