For B2B Startups: What to Put in Your Lead Scoring Matrix

Knowledge and application about lead scoring are critical when entering the B2B  enterprise. It is a strategy that makes an objective system for ranking B2B leads. That is, potential clients are distinguished by attaching values to them in view of their actions concerning a product or service. Though these values may differ among companies, for the most part, it is featured by the leads’ interest towards the business or their places in the purchasing cycle.

For B2B Startups: What to Put in Your Lead Scoring Matrix

Lead Scoring Matrix is a tool used to facilitate such ranking of B2B leads. It is composed of two categories, explicit and implicit.

1. Explicit – refers to the fundamental information about B2B prospects that determines how significant are they to your business’ target demographic. The following fields should be found in this category:

*Company Name

*Address

*Revenue

*Industry

*Job Title

*No. of Employees

*Products Purchased

*Competitors

*Relationship

*Lead Source

*Partners

*Timeframe

*Environment Technologies (CRM, ERP, etc.)

*Email Type (personal, professional)

2. Implicit – pertains to the behavioral information of your B2B prospects (i.e engagement activities they have done pertinent to your business) that determines how ready are they to begin a conversation with your sales. The following fields should be found in this category:

*Website traffic (Frequency, pages viewed, and the duration)

*Phone calls (No. of phone contacts with reps and length of conversations)

*Press release (No. of views, article type, and article sharing activity)

*Books/eBooks (Publications viewed, ordered or downloaded)

*Requests (White papers, infographics or product manuals viewed or downloaded)

*Subscriptions (Newsletters, updates, news or other progressing content)

*Video (Frequency, tag searches, and duration)

*Webinars (No. of webinars attended, duration of attendance and most recent event attended)

Lead scoring is an essential practice that can enhance your general sales efficiency. It guides other businesses, not just the B2B enterprise in recognizing potential clients, organize leads in view of their suitability and interest level and enables you to assess whether a prospect should be nurtured first or advance through the sales pipeline.

Nail that Apology With These Simple Steps

Clients (whether prospects or existing) are treated as valuable assets. Crossing a line and having them upset or discourage at you and/or your business can do some serious damage. Correspondingly, you need to say you’re sorry and set things right with them. Consider the following steps below.

  • Address them properly and always, always make the tone of your voice apologetic. It will imply that something is off but this may get you on their good side. You have to be cautious on how you begin with your approach. This is one of those times where these clients gauge your level of professionalism, especially if you’re giving an undesirable news.
  • When you have established your approach, go over the details of the problem to them. Double-check all the errors and ensure that the issues at hand involve them significantly. Express these issues clearly and concisely along with how you were able to determine the problem.
  • You will not impress them with that patented “This won’t happen again.” line. If you do say it, mean it. They would want to see that everything you’ve got is exhausted to solve the issues. As what they say, “Action speaks louder than words”. Seeing results from these efforts will also serve as a confirmation of the benefit they will have from your business.
  • In the event that you have settled the issues, you need to apologize for having inconvenienced them and give them a genuine gratification for their understanding, if not, patience in dealing with all of it. Clients need to feel that they are being taken care of and you need to live up to that by showing them how sincere you are.

Mistakes are inevitable in business and there is no such thing as “a quick fix” just by saying you are sorry. However, if you couple that apology with sincerity and actions to make things right then that will certainly make the difference.

Regulations in Telemarketing You Should Know

The idea of calling to sell services or products might be an easy job for some people who does not know the workings behind telemarketing, but to telemarketers, it is not just ‘call all you can’ or ‘call till you drop’ to get leads. They have to be wary of certain restrictions and rules before engaging in a conversation. By being aware of this, both callers and customers can carry out their rights, and a spontaneous contract is automatically produced. This contract is called “Unsolicited Consumer Agreements.”

It is stipulated there that a telemarketing sale is unsolicited if:

  • Caller called consumer without an invitation
  • There is an agreement whose worth is unknown.

In lieu to this unsolicited telemarketing calls, a caller must abide by particular protocols. These protocols which callers should strictly follow revolve on:

The Contact Hours – On weekdays, callers are only allowed to contact customers after 9 am and before 8 pm. While on Saturdays, callers are only allowed to contact customers after 9 am and before 5 pm. Whereas, NO calls shall be made on Sundays and holidays.

The Disclosure – This pertains to what a caller should say. The caller must introduce her or his business name, directly clarify the intention of the call and inform the customer his or her cooling-off rights.

The Contract – In the case of an agreement between a telemarketer and customer, a written copy or a copy sent online must be given to the latter by the former accordingly. The customer should receive it within five business days or (or longer if customer concedes). The contract must be in plain language, legible and clear and must be signed by both parties. Moreover, it should be stipulated in the contract the termination process (cooling-off rights), the full terms of the agreement, the total price payable or how this will be computed, any postal or delivery charges and contact details.

The Cooling-off Period – By the law, a customer has the right to rethink about the contract (Unsolicited Consumer Agreement) in 10 business days. The commencement of these business days is marked at the time the customer received the contract. Within this mentioned period, a customer can cancel without penalty. This cooling-off period can be extended up to 6 months if there is a failure on:

  • The provision of the information about the cooling-off period; or
  • The compliance of requirements for Unsolicited Consumer Agreements (such as failing to issue a copy of the agreement, not including necessary information in the agreement, or providing goods or services during the cooling-off period).

The Feeding of Information – Customer, should be consistently supplied with relevant information regarding the provided services or products.

It does not do good to be lenient in following these regulations. Remember that in any telemarketing industry; those mentioned above must be observed to operate legally.

B2B Lead Scoring System: Bridging the Gap Between Marketing and Sales

Arguments between the marketing and sales team often surface in any given business. Whether it’s B2C or B2B, you can’t have missed that patented complaint of the sales teams not reaching their quotas because of the poor lead quality and the usual counterargument of the marketing team that the sales did not just make a decent attempt on closing the leads. When this frequently happens to your business, you might just roll your eyes out because you’re getting used to it and settle on believing that it will eventually pass. Don’t. According to SiriusDecisions, a leading global B2B research and advisory firm, B2B organizations with tightly aligned marketing and sales achieved 24% faster revenue growth and 27% faster profit growth over a three-year period. You’re far from achieving these benefits if you continuously take this ‘seem to be trivial clash’ between marketing and sales as inevitable.

         One way to start building a good foundation for your marketing and sales team is through your B2B lead scoring system. A B2B lead scoring system allows these two to be on the same page when it comes to lead definition, quality, and quantity. Sales can communicate those leads that actually displays the intention of purchasing. With this, marketing can produce content, programs and efforts mainly focused on those groups. Furthermore, this gives them the chance to closely and constantly work together as meetings should be frequent to discuss the status quo and whether to determine if the B2B lead scores require changes and upgrades.

        When there is a strong, precise B2B lead scoring system and if this is maintained, marketing will be boosted as there will be an in-depth comprehension on what makes a quality lead. Moreover, you’ll be able to identify your top performing marketing channels, campaigns, and content and exploit them to generate hot leads. This will be followed by an increase in sales as those leads who are viable for conversion are generated and prioritized. As initially mentioned, this is only the case if there is an efficient and sustained B2B lead scoring system. Have it the other way around, and the relationship between your marketing and sales bears the brunt.

B2B Telemarketing: What to Do When Your B2B Prospects Do These…

The following are the three common problems, telemarketers experiences from B2B prospects during telemarketing campaigns and here’s how to tackle them.

Ignore your Calls

You’ve been reaching to a B2B prospect for how many times now. But, to no avail. Apparently, your calls are being ignored. The best thing to do in this scenario is to incorporate other method/s. Send your B2B prospect a personalized email or physical mail. These methods might bode well especially for B2B prospects who prefer email or other means of communication than telephone calls. If you still aren’t able to get a respond after doing this, set another follow-up call for a few months out and attempt again.

Hung up on your Calls

Even if it seems like your B2B prospect is just having an awful day or has a serious attitude problem, you should not dismiss the possibility that you might also be the one to blame. How many times would you say are you trying to reach this prospect? Is it accurate to say that you are constantly polite on the telephone? In this case, being assertive may aggravate the situation. You need to lay off this B2B prospect because you were off to a bad start. Go after another person inside that company instead and this time, employ a low-pressure strategy like sending brochures or postcards. Or, you can simply direct your efforts somewhere else.

Badmouths you

Mean prospects are sure to burst your bubble. However, don’t fight fire with fire. Contemplate first. It might have something to do with you than them. Take for example, calling at a bad time. Such times often draws out the bad in people and you’ve just subjected yourself as a person they can vent off of their negativity. With this, you should genuinely apologize and acknowledge that you have been intrusive. This often gets the tension loose. Since it’s clearly not a good time to talk, ask if it’s okay to call when the time is already convenient. If the B2B prospects concede, that’s a good sign. Set up another schedule you can ring them up. If they not and you certainly had gotten on the prospect’s bad side, it’s either you let that prospect go, or you can pass it on to your colleague (because someone might have better luck).

 

B2B Marketing Campaign: Planning It Like a Vacation (Part 2)

Identifying the suitable flight

In most instances, launching a marketing campaign can be as pricey as those flights going to particular destinations. If you’re considering on outsourcing some of your B2B marketing or sales procedures, choose those that can present you the most profitable means.

Also, keep in mind that not each company can have the same, definite marketing technique and turned out fruitful. It’s much the same as how a particular time of flight is favorable for everyone. Make use of your profiles to promptly recognize inadequately qualified B2B prospects and produce quality sales leads within the shortest possible time.

Prepare a variety of activities

Swimming and taking in the refreshing sea breeze seems like an appealing thing to do during vacation lest it occurs to you that you’ve been doing it for the past few days. In case you don’t picture your marketing being repetitious as such, endeavor on treading different activities.

Watch out for fresh and engaging approaches to enhance your B2B marketing efforts. Advance in on new angles by accommodating distinctive types of gauging outcomes and performance. Discover other means to produce leads, plan proposals, devise new call scripts or frequently write blog entries.

Pick up from the experience

You can say that the most wonderful thing about vacations are the memories you have and will make. Providing the significance of learning from previous lessons and lapses, your business methods couldn’t be all the more similar. Industry scenes are continually confronting random interruption. Those ways and practices that may have helped you efficiently in the past aren’t ensured to do the trick until the end of time.

After having a vacation, try not to surmise on falling back to work with a mind completely lacking ideas for your business. The things you do before, during and after a vacation have a ton of amazing manifestation in the workplace.

B2B Marketing Campaign: Planning It Like a Vacation (Part 1)

The holiday season is fast approaching, and it means vacation for most people. And whether you are riding solo or going to tag along with family or friends, planning helps you get the most out of your vacation. The same can be said to B2B marketing campaigns. Those businesses who need to take the word of their brand on a tour past the existing markets layout their plan meticulously and with a considerable investment. They blaze new industries as a goal. They search for the perfect place for their marketing messages along with the medium to take them there.

Plotting the destination

Your destination will say about what you want with your time off. Do you want to relax? Explore? Or both? Also, in marketing, the industry you are focusing on will determine what your sales reps need from your potential clients. Do they like to contact current clients, look into new issues, or put in a different take to established solutions?

Try to separate those into a rundown of objectives. Such objectives should be able to identify your priorities and the marketing and sales activities that mostly consumes your time.

Be strategic

Being strategical also has its manifestation in planning for a vacation. Take for example, knowing who you are going with indicates overseeing time for the places you all wish to go to and what activities to undertake.

Correspondingly, you have to designate the right persons to their appropriate place in the sales procedure. It is not a smart plan to micro-manage. However, it assists in drawing the lines and distributing particular set of duties. Rivalry or ineligible B2B prospects are superfluous and can be a hindrance and a waste of time. Build clients’ profiles so that your marketers and sales reps can determine what tools and strategies to employ.

 

12 B2B Appointment Setting Reminders (Part 3)

Don’t Be Passive-Aggressive in Asking for a Meeting

The simplest yet often forgotten technique in appointment setting; after your pitch, don’t ask your prospects if they’d like an appointment with your sales. Proceed to giving out politely the date and time your sales representative can talk to the prospect and ask whether they’re free on that schedule. Doing this would display that you’re eager to discuss and do business with them as soon as possible. After all, if the prospect isn’t really interested, they will decline or if they aren’t available with the arrangement you’ve given, they’ll say so and might give you a schedule they prefer.

Be Sensible

When giving out the date and time your sales representative can talk to the prospect (as mentioned above), provide sets of it that are likely convenient for the latter. By doing this, you’re giving them options and will eliminate you from sounding like you’re trying to force a schedule that they may not be available. As a matter of fact, whatever will be decided all boils down to the prospects’ preference. Prioritizing them as much as possible is an imperative aspect in appointment setting.

Be Flexible

Though appointment setting typically occurs over the phone, there are other ways to reach your prospects. Exploit emails, live chat, mobile texts, and the social media. Even appointments per se don’t have to be over the phone. It can be a face to face meeting or through online. The bottom line is, be flexible. Tread the places where you can contact them and make sure you make back up arrangements in case a situation arise that requires the use of one (e.g. time conflicts, venue issues, technical problems, etc.)

Remind Without Nagging

Once you have already successfully made an appointment with the prospect. It’s given that you need to remind them afterward so they wouldn’t forget. However, don’t overdo it. Constant reminding might bother them and cancel the appointment. You can try calling or emailing them a day before the appointment. Confirm whether they’re still able to attend. Or, you can ask them after you’ve made an appointment confirmation when is the best time to call them for a reminder.

B2B appointment setting should be deliberate and skilfully done to ensure proper engagement and connection with prospects.

12 B2B Appointment Setting Reminders (Part 2)

Always Ask if It’s a Good Time to Talk

If you’re able to reach the prospect, don’t get too hasty in proceeding to your pitch. You might have called at a bad time. Being interrupted does not bode well for many people particularly those in the field of business. So it’s only polite to ask whether it’s a good time to talk. If the prospect grants you the time, that’s good. You can fire away. If they refuse because they’re not free at the moment, grab this as an opportunity to set another schedule at their convenience.

Don’t Hang Up

We’re bound to get that dreadful “I’m not interested” line from prospects. However, you can use this as another opening. Ask why they’re not interested. You might make something out of their response that can pave the way for you to offer other services from your business.

Know Your Prospect

If you want to do business with another business, it is expected that you are well acquainted with things about them. More than just impressing them with your knowledge, it’s more on aligning your offers to their needs and giving them the impression you’re committed. How humiliating it is to phone a prospect, proudly offer your product or service and go sounding the crickets when you can’t answer their questions about what’s in it for them or how would it be relevant to their business.

Apply Mirroring

In Psychology, Mirroring pertains to the behavior in which a person subconsciously imitates the gesture, speech pattern, or attitude of another. It follows that the individual who is being mirrored can easily establish rapport with the person exhibiting the mirrored behavior, as the similarities in gesture, speech pattern, or attitude allow the former to feel more connected with the latter. This interesting notion has been leveraged and regarded as one of the most proven methods in appointment setting, well, in the business world as a matter of fact. For appointment setters who occasionally meet their prospects face to face, this seem to be a challenge but it’s not impossible. Mirroring can be done via telephone, even in emails. If the prospect is a fast or slow talker, match up to him/her and use words he or she likely understands and would use. Though it is mentioned earlier that Mirroring is subconsciously done, skilled appointment setters can harness it otherwise.

12 B2B Appointment Setting Reminders (Part 1)

Effective B2B appointment setting means generation of qualified leads and scheduled sales opportunities for the sales team. If things get smooth with the prospects and sales representatives, it can certainly turn into conversion. But obviously, we need to go back from where we started. Such benefits are out of reach if you can’t effectively set B2B appointments. Whether you are an established or starting up business, here are great tips to steer you into that path.

Get Hold of Referrals

Prospecting call themselves are a good place to acquire internal referrals. This technique raises the chance of getting your prospects talk to you.

Aim the Top Level Decision Makers

In B2B appointment setting, the most ideal prospects to talk to are those persons in the C-suite. This is because the final say on purchasing a product or service rests on their shoulders. Another thing is that this accelerates the sales procedure as it cuts up your time talking to people from the functional level and repeating your pitch.

Keep Your Tone Pleasing

No one would like to speak to a surly-sounding appointment setter. Definitely not someone you’d want to make a further engagement with. Talk to your B2B prospect as if they were the first prospect you called rather than the 30th. Vivacious and sharp, that’s how should it be. You might say this is pointing the obvious, but this is so inconsistently practiced it’s worth noting.

Prepare for Objections

Objections are inevitable, and while they may frequently surface (much to our dislike) during the conversation with B2B prospects, it should never be a reason for you to be quickly disheartened and let go of your opportunity with them. In fact, you can use this up to turn the tables and get your B2B prospects’ trust. How? Determine the possible objections beforehand and think of logical answers that will have you taking your prospects to a convincing point.