At the initial stage of the sales funnel, we collect leads using paid ads, search engines, social media, and other channels. The middle of the sales funnel is often neglected, especially if we want to quickly finalise the sale. However, without proper lead management, we may lose the chance to complete the transaction. How to optimise the funnel to achieve the goals?
Lead quality at the initial stage of the sales funnel has a direct effect on conversion rates. Also, a large number of leads delivered to marketers can exceed the capabilities of traders, so that only a small percentage of inquiries will end in sales. This is why lead classification is so important – lead scoring allows marketers to pass on attractive and valuable leads. Only some of them are ready to buy, so it’s worth selecting only the ones that seem to pay off most in the future. A marketing strategy should assume different action scenarios, which requires the use of modern tools to help you organise your audience base by dividing it into individual segments. One of the best solutions is marketing automation – a tool that allows for efficient management of contacts and analysis of their behaviour at every stage of the sales funnel.
The sales funnel is essential for segmenting potential customers and creating relationships with them. Audience segmentation must be based on user behaviour analysis to customise messages and decide whether leads are ready to move on to the next stage of the funnel. If not, the leads need to undergo lead nurturing once again, arousing awareness of the brand and product that the recipient may want to purchase. Remember not to put quantity over quality – sometimes it may be a really good idea to target sales activities at a specific segment of potential customers who are in the middle of the shopping funnel. Data is the main value in the sales process. If we know the needs and expectations of our audience well, we’ll find out what content and solutions we should provide them with. A marketing automation tool will help you throughout the process, enabling access to a huge amount of knowledge on your customers.
Marketing automation also offers modules for audience scoring, i.e. assigning a certain score for each action taken by the user. Owing to this, we are able to determine the level of their engagement and readiness to make a purchase. In other words, the trader receives clear information which recipients are worth being contacted first. The so-called hot leads receive an offer tailored to their individual needs and preferences. With marketing automation, it is possible to send personalised messages to potential customers while building their engagement in the whole process.
When your sales team does not have enough information regarding a lead, there is a risk that potential customers will lose interest in the offer. Content should be as customised as possible, and tailored to the audience interests. For example, when a recipient views a webinar, it’s a good idea to provide them with supporting content, such as an ebook. The sales department should receive the biggest possible amount of data on the actions taken by potential customers, as well as information on marketing activities. All the data should be available in a single system that all employees have access to – it is worth using a marketing automation tool that enables proper management of leads and existing customers.