You know your target industries, the ideal company size and even the titles of those within the organizations responsible for making the purchase decision for your product or service. You’ve been successful acquiring new customers but now it’s time to accelerate that process.
Reaching deeper into understanding your prospect and their buyer journey by identifying psychographic characteristics of your prospect base beyond a simple profile can give you insights that can ultimately refine your message, streamline your sales process and optimize your marketing budget.
Here are five questions that will help you better understand your buyers:
1. What translates to success for your prospect? How are they evaluated?
In a complex sale, there are generally multiple parties involved in the evaluation and decision-making process. Your approach ought to factor in how success is evaluated for each individual on the decision-making team. Is it more efficiency? Lower customer acquisition costs? Or perhaps, your solution is being evaluated as part of a broader effort to reduce costs via automation? Having an understanding of how each member is being evaluated in their jobs will help you create a message matrix that prioritizes the benefits for each individual based on what is important to their career.
2. What is the role of each member of the buyer committee in the decision process?
Engaging just one person or the wrong person on the buying committee rarely leads to success. In addition to knowing each person’s motivations from a career perspective, knowing the role each person serves on the committee and customizing messaging to each of them is key to boosting your chances for sales success. Identifying potential champions, detractors and neutrals early will help you mount a concerted campaign that nurtures the former, neutralizes detractors and convinces neutrals.
3. What are the business conditions driving evaluation and purchase?
If your solution benefits a variety of industries, more effective messaging can be derived from an understanding of the unique quirks inherent to each industry. Regardless if it is changes in the regulatory environment or the industry itself in the form of say consolidation or even changes in consumer behavior for your prospect’s product, these could all be important drivers for or against your solution. Knowing these things can help you better assess your prospect’s risk threshold and challenges and allow you to tailor your sales and marketing communications accordingly.
4. What are information sources do they trust?
If word of mouth is the strongest form of marketing, endorsements from independent sources are a close second. Typically, your prospect keeps up with industry news from a select group of trusted sources both online and in the physical world. Learning the mix of news sources, industry analyst groups, trade journals, social media platforms and industry experts will help you create a syndication plan for your content that will resonate.
5. How does a deal get done?
Finally, an often neglected area is understanding of how your prospect actually buys. Is there seasonality? Does it need to go to the board of directors for a final approval? Is the deal negotiated through the procurement department? When are new solutions budgeted?
Being able to answer these questions will bring structure and clarity to your processes. With deeper insights, you’ll be able to bring marketing into closer alignment with sales for more effective sales enablement.