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How to Shorten the B2B Sales Cycle

Great B2B Marketing

If there is one thing that aggravates the modern B2B company, it is the constantly lengthening sales cycle.  Everyone, from CEO to sales VP to sales rep, suffers from this problem and wants to know what to do about it.  What exactly do I mean by the term “sales cycle”? Of course, the sales cycle time is expressed as an average. 

It Just Takes Longer. Your Sales Cycle in 2013?

The ROI Guy

A significant 43% of B2B companies indicate that sales cycles have lengthened over the past three years, this according to a recent survey of 243 solution providers by B2B Magazine. Confirming lengthening B2B sales cycles, SiriusDecisions indicates that durations have increased an average of 22% over a similar period. For more information, click here.

B2B Sales Cycle: 4 steps to avoid the wasteful ‘no decision’

B2B Lead Generation Blog

Tweet CSO Insights , which interviews thousands of chief sales officers to benchmark B2B sales best practices, has tracked an alarming trend. Jim Dickie, CSO Insight’s managing partner, says this should make any sales leader cringe. “It’s not a big deal to lose to a competitor; it happens to everyone,” he explains. No deal = broken sales cycle. He says the escalating number of “no decisions” is a sure sign that sales cycles are broken. CSO Insight’s latest sales performance optimization study reveals that an average of 4.1 Sales

Let’s Make a Deal: Best-in-Class Sales Training Can Shorten Your Sales Cycle

CMO Essentials

Sales training is commonly understood to be a must-have component in managing quota-carriers. Today, no sales leader is foolish enough to deny the value of basic training for their B2B sales team members. above 2013 sales training spend levels. Figure 1: Customize, Coach, Close: Best-in-Class Sales Guidance. Taking Training beyond the Basics.

Segmenting your content marketing

Biznology

B2B marketers need this, but so do B2C marketers that sell high consideration items with long sales cycles. Content Marketing Webinars brand differentiation buyer journey Buyer Profile Content marketing Content strategy market segmentation marketing persona Marketing strategy sales funnel targeted content targeted marketing video Webinar Thanks to all our sponsors!

Do You Qualify?: The Leads Test You Must Pass

IKO-Systems

So let’s get into the nitty gritty and talk about the fine points of what differentiates a qualified lead from an unqualified lead. And how you can fill your sales pipeline with only qualified leads. Are in control of their own buying cycle and are completing self-education research. Have not been nurtured enough to close their sales cycle (uneducated about company).

5 Common Stages of B2B Lead Nurturing

It's All About Revenue

This is an excellent period to start showing off your credentials, provide list of industry reports and accolades you’ve received, cost comparisons, relevant facts and figures that differentiate you from your competitors. It’s important that when sales passes back a lead they provide a reason. Let’s just say it can feel more like an odyssey than a simple business transaction. Welcome.

5 Questions Every Business Website Must Answer

Webbiquity

This is where you differentiate yourself from the pack. Be as direct and factual as possible about your differentiators: service, price, features, capabilities, technology, experience, focus, expertise, acknowledgments, TCO, ROI…tell your prospects what makes your product or service uniquely suited to their needs. 5. Who are you? What do you sell? Who do you sell to?

5 Signs to Qualify Your Demand Generation Play

LEADership

Here are 5 signs that tell you clearly whether your demand generation efforts are headed towards the goldmine or pummeling your sales target down a black hole. 1. In order to differentiate your brand and product/service from the competition, you need to know your competitive landscape as well as you know your own business. Is your content killing your B2B sales ? 5.

Attribution Modeling: Is Multi-Touch For You? [Flowchart]

bizible

The first differentiator that guides the attribution model decision is B2B versus B2C. First, B2B deals often involve several people that act together as an “account” which means more overall touchpoints and, second, B2B sales cycles often take weeks or months from discovery to closed deal. Marketing & Sales Cycle. Multi-touch (e.g. Shaped). Marketing Spend.

Digital Display Advertising in the Data Analytics Age (with Jennifer Davis, VP Marketing and Product Strategy at Planar Systems)

Crimson Marketing

Tracking data, identifying buyers and following leads throughout the entire sales cycle has become a conventional practice, even in areas like digital display signage. marketing is one of the flippers and sales is the other.”. Tools for trust: The key to winning the cooperation of sales partners in go to market strategy is trust, says Jennifer.

Content Is The Key To Social Selling Success

B2B Marketing Insider

The best social selling teams and representatives are journalists and curators; delivering the right content to the right customer on the right channel at the right time of the sales cycle. Many are self-educating early in the sales cycle. This is the secret sauce to beat and differentiate yourself from the competition. Differentiate Yourself From The Competition.

When are Sales Won or Lost?

Your Sales Management Guru

When are Sales Won or Lost? notable function a sales manager must master is understanding why sales are won or lost. This is particularly true for large, complex sales opportunities where there may never be another opportunity or, if so, it may be years in the future. In most cases the sale is won or lost much earlier in the sales cycle. Actions.

The Economic Value of Your Company Brand

Great B2B Marketing

For instance, it can be a boon to the stock price, making the entire company more valuable.  It can be a sales and profit accelerator by helping you sell more products and services at a greater profit margin. It differentiates you from all other competitors. Jerry was right.  A strong and differentiated brand can put you way ahead of the competition. The brand is respected.

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7 Paradoxical Sales Principles

Jill Konrath's Fresh Sales Strategies Blog

Recognizing and acting on these 7 paradoxical sales principles is critical to your long-term success. 1. To win more sales, stop selling. Focus on helping your prospects achieve their business, professional and personal objectives – not making a sale. 2. To speed up your sales cycle, slow down. To differentiate your offering, become the differentiator.

How long should your online business video production be?

Biznology

We watch online videos to get informed and make decisions across every stage of the purchase cycle… and this trend will only increase over the next few years. Some sales cycles are very long, and some, like e-commerce, are very short. As most B2B sales need human interaction, once that prospect is talking to you in person, their research continues. 180 seconds?

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B2B Content Marketing That Drives Results

Great B2B Marketing

Whether your goals are to increase market awareness, drive website traffic, build lead generation, or improve sales funnel conversion, understanding how to create copy that delivers results is fundamental to achieving success. Targets various stages of the buying cycle. Shorter sales cycle. There is a lot of buzz in the air about content marketing. Credibility boost.

Words Decision Makers Love to Hear

Jill Konrath's Fresh Sales Strategies Blog

Increased competitive differentiation. Increased sales per customer. Reduced cycle time. Faster sales cycles. Decision makers don''t care about your porduct''s speed, specifications, or efficiency. They don''t care about the wonderful methodology you use. Your offering is simply a tool. They care only about the results your offering delivers for them.

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Two reasons to invest in online business video production

Biznology

So if the decision-makers that your marketing is trying to attract and your sales teams are trying to reach and build trust with during the sales cycle are NOT busy, then they will have time to read all of your PDFs, white papers, and website. The typical amortization of an evergreen business sales or promotional video on a website is about four years. Like this post?

Four online marketing metrics to obsess about

grow - Practical Marketing Solutions

” This is the digital crossroad, a genuine point of business differentiation today. The sales cycle for my B2B business is very long. This is the digital crossroad, a genuine point of business differentiation today. The sales cycle for my B2B business is very long. Briefly, the Guy-traffic crashed my server and shut down my website. Social shares.

Over-Creating (and Under-Utilizing) Content Is Bad for Business!

CMO Essentials

It’s vital to successful interactions with prospects, customers, and peers, but it’s also a struggle to consistently deliver content that’s valuable, useable, and even discoverable by sales reps. Marketing teams often create content without feedback from sales because, well, their organizations expect them to! Content, for many organizations, is a double-edged sword. Great.

Best Sales Forum - Fresh Sales Strategies LinkedIn Group

Jill Konrath's Fresh Sales Strategies Blog

I created the Fresh Sales Strategies group on LinkedIn so salespeople can get fresh perspectives about how to sell to today's crazy-busy prospects. In this sales forum, we'll talk about challenges like prospecting, selling value, getting into big companies, differentiating and speeding up slow sales cycles. link]. invite you to share your thoughts & expertise.

10 Marketing Trends That Should Influence Your Content Strategy

KoMarketing Associates

Content Curation can be Beneficial during the Sales Process  . However, according to inboundli data , content curation can provide a solution to these challenges, while also assisting the sales process. Mainstream Sales Tactics are Becoming Stale. Numbers behind this trend : Much like the way content marketers need to break away from the crowd, the same can be said for sales.

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Why Product Managers & Salespeople Should be Friends

Your Sales Management Guru

In most companies, the product/service managers have limited interaction with the sale’s team except for the introduction of a new offering or at an annual customer summit. The missed opportunity is the sales team’s immediate understanding of the current market and what prospects are seeking. Typically the sales organization is concerned about the now – what is missing from your company’s offering versus the competition. What the PM may learn through the sales team is for the customer to really benefit, they must purchase another offering as well – and that is a turnoff.

Marketing Continues to Drop the Ball for Sales in online marketing programs, as per Crain’s B2B study market

Fearless Competitor

Survey Shows B2B Sales Cycle Lengthening, Increasing Challenges For Online Marketing Organizations. New data from Crain’s BtoB Magazine underscores need for brand differentiation, better targeting and segmentation strategies, and more visibility into online marketing program performance across the entire marketing funnel. Key conclusions from the survey include: 1. link].

5 Books to Recharge Your Strategy in 2015 and Beyond

It's All About Revenue

With complex sales cycles often extending into years, maintaining long-term relevance requires both strategic planning and dynamic adaptability. Albee outlines clear-cut strategies for developing customer-oriented communications, identifying the distinct value that differentiates your company, and making the shift from singular communications to a continuum approach that aligns outcomes to business objectives. For many this time of year is great for kicking back, celebrating the annual accomplishments of your team, and marking the moment with some downtime. Of course not.

B2B Lead Generation Blog: Customer Referrals and Your Sales and Marketing Department

B2B Lead Generation Blog

« Lead generation and the number | Main | Reaching Decision Makers » Customer Referrals and Your Sales and Marketing Department For the complex sale you need enthusiastic referrals to help you build your reputation, differentiate yourself, demonstrate your value proposition, shorten your sales cycle, and drive revenue. So how do you ask for referrals?

B2B vs. B2C: How Content Marketing Changes by Target Audience

Hubspot

An auto repair shop’s messaging will likely appeal to both value and trust, while a cloud storage provider might market based on price as a way to differentiate itself in a crowded market. According to the Eccolo Media Technology Content Survey , B2B buyers prefer to read blogs and white papers during the pre-sales cycle. Intent. Messaging. Channel. Pretty impressive, right?

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Hey, Salespeople — Welcome to Meme Selling 101!

Modern B2B Marketing

You thought the sale was in the bag, but it’s becoming more and more clear that perhaps that wasn’t the case after all. Meme selling is the rip cord of sales strategies; when all other options have been exhausted, one of the tools at your disposal is to insert a funny meme or image and click send. Benefits of incorporating humor into your sales cycle. 1. Sales b2b

5 Megatrends that Have Redefined Selling - Insights from a Sales Rock Star

Sales Engine

As you may know, Neil is regarded by many as the father of Consultative Selling and the author of many books, including SPIN Selling, the 1988 New York Times Best Seller than many of us B2B “Sales Lifers” grew up with as our template for success. Sales Engine CEO, Paul Rafferty with author Neil Rackham. Sales EnablementCreate value, don’t communicate value. 2. Well…not so fast.

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Pick Up Your Momentum! 5 Ways to Fix a Dwindling Sales Call

Modern B2B Marketing

Author: Nikita Ovtchinikov As salespeople, we know that the discovery call (the initial call between a sales rep and a prospect) can make or break a sales cycle. Forecast more accurately : Thorough questioning will make deals much more predictable and further the reputation for reliability of a sales professional. Sales b2bWhat happens if you do nothing?

3 Essential Ingredients For Your Engaging Sales Presentation

Kaon

Original article published on Sales Initiative. Those opening seconds are critical in holding the attention of your customers; therefore, your sales presentation needs to be compelling and relevant to each unique audience. Frequently, this individual content doesn’t clearly differentiate their products/solutions correctly, making it difficult to create consistency within the brand.

5 Steps to Build an Impressive B2B Account-Based Marketing Framework

bizible

To start, ABM will never work without strong Sales and Marketing alignment. In a recent webinar with Leadspace, Jon Miller, the co-founder of Marketo and Engagio, stated that Marketing talks about people while Sales talks about accounts. ABM is about bridging that gap and aligning Marketing and Sales under the same language and goals. When and how will the Sales team follow up?

The state of the nation on SEO, content strategy and earned media

grow - Practical Marketing Solutions

They don’t ever mention the word customer, nothing about customer insight, nothing about the customer journey buying cycle and so forth. You could really tune in and focus on individuals who were high probability customers or sales leads. Today, We’re nurturing them along a sales cycle. I don’t think that can be a completely automated process by any means.

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The Skinny on Lead Nurturing - 11 Experts Weigh In (part 1 of 2)

ViewPoint

It's a critical component in the sales and marketing process; yet, most companies aren't implementing it effectively—that is, if they are at all. After three months of calling, 40% wanted to continue to be in the IT company’s lead nurturing program, 15% moved further along in the sales cycle and 7% converted into customers. This year I've been talking a lot about Nurturing.

The number one business opportunity in marketing today

grow - Practical Marketing Solutions

believe that just a basic knowledge of measurement tools can go a LONG WAY in helping to propel and differentiate your business … and so does Tom Webster, the co-host on the Marketing Companion podcast. – Content marketing at the end of the sales cycle. Content marketing at the end of the sales cycle. – Getting drunk on growth. Doug Henning.

Why and How to Improve Audience Segmentation for B2B Marketing

Salesfusion

In addition to differentiating people based on more static characteristics like influence level and location, you also need to consider dynamic characteristics like stage in the buyer’s journey, since someone who has just entered the sales cycle will require a different, higher level message than someone who is further down the funnel. The times they are a-changin’. Location.

Your Unique Value: Solution Focused versus Challenge Centric?

The ROI Guy

Many times, when organizations try to articulate the differentiating value of their solutions, they start with a “solutions first approach”, communicating each feature they perceive as a differentiator and the value these features might deliver. What your marketing and sales enablement teams might not fully realize is that: Product / service differentiators are fleeting, especially today where new product launches are faster than ever before and solutions are quickly commoditized. Engage too late and price may be the only differentiator there is.

Generating Leads is a Primary Role of the Savvy Modern Marketer

Marketri

Before Social Media: Before social media exploded onto the scene, the role of marketing was to identify target market segments; differentiate a firm within those markets; and consistently communicate effective marketing messages related to the company and its products and services.The goal was to build brand awareness and to set the sales team up for greater success.

Call To Action: Close Your Buyer Journey Gaps

CMO Essentials

Aberdeen Research shows that mapping your buyer’s journey can increase marketing investment ROI, reduce customer support costs, and shorten your sales cycle.  Prospects interact with our brand as a single entity; from the home page of our website to our hold music to pricing negotiations with sales – it’s all one brand. However, our buyer is not so discerning.

How to Break Free of the Pack? Differentiate for Success

The ROI Guy

Sales cycles are extended, more stakeholders are involved in each decision, and more competitors seem to be invited into every deal. So are the leading characteristics for sales and marketing in 2010. So how can you best differentiate your offerings and break free from the pack? As a sales enablement professional, what tools are you giving to sales people to help them align offerings to deliver results? Competition has never been greater for customer mindshare. The original Forrester study and commentary can be found at: [link].

Craft a Killer Sales Playbook

VisionEdge

The Sales Playbook, Defined. sales playbook is a collection of tactics or methods that characterizes the roles and responsibilities for you (and your sales team), lays out clear objectives, identifies metrics for measurement, and provides a common framework and approach for closing sales. The playbook helps you implement a common sales methodology that leverages the processes used by high performers. Accelerate sales effectiveness and accuracy. The Components of the Sales Playbook, Explained. The outcome? Diagram the engagement experience.

The Real Reason Sales People Struggle to Close Opportunities

ViewPoint

As CEO of UK-based Inflexion-Point Strategy Partners , Bob works with the leadership teams of technology-based B2B-focused companies, enabling them to make the critical connections between their marketing messages, their sales conversations, their true differentiators, and their customer''s priorities. For those of you unfamiliar with the movie, Blake’s philosophy of salepersonship is that, if sales people do nothing else, then they should at least Always Be Closing. That may strike you as a neat acronym—but it’s at the heart of a lot of sales problems.