Virtual selling is a whole new
style of sales. This realization is prompting chief revenue officers to reframe
how they define success and how they support today’s seller. To support these
efforts, the role of sales technology must also evolve.
CRM started as a way to capture
information the business needed for continuity and forecasting. When it became
clear that reps found it more burdensome than helpful, the technology evolved and
the mantra emerged that CRM should reduce time spent on administrative tasks so
that sellers could spend more time selling. Now even that thinking is outdated.
Not only has the sales role evolved to adapt to the virtual model, but we now
expect more from our CRM technology. Professional and personal lives are more
intertwined than ever before. Many of today’s sales reps are taking calls while
cooking family dinner instead of closing deals at the steakhouse. Today, a more
accurate virtual selling mantra should be: CRM should help reps spend less time
selling, and more importantly, spend the right amount of time on high-value
revenue generation. This betters their professional and their personal lives.
And importantly, it betters the bottom line of their organization. Win, win,
For sellers to really thrive in
this environment, there is no room for wasted time or wasted effort. Sales
technology must step up to make this a reality and sales leaders need to
embrace the advancements in order to retain their top talent. As we adopt an
increasingly virtual model, I offer the five tenets virtual selling
organizations should follow.
1. One Screen to Rule Them All:
Holistic, Unified Sales Intelligence
Preparation to send a prospect
email or make a simple sales call shouldn’t be a job unto itself but it often
requires toggling between applications and massive time investment.
It’s what so many field reps have
been doing for years, but in the new model of virtual selling it’s not the type of work sellers need to be
wasting time on. It’s the CRM’s job to present everything a rep needs to
succeed in a single, scrollable, searchable and unified screen. Full stop. No
need to bounce around eight different tools. No need for Post-It notes and Word
docs. Instead, everything is housed in one place, one single screen, including
email, videoconferencing, and dialing tools.
Fall is only just starting,
but for anyone running an e-commerce business relying on holiday season sales,
it is time to get 2021’s marketing campaign underway. Some of the big players
in retail have already started. Anyone shopping in-store will probably have
noticed the first few holiday decorations being put up. Online, some leading
e-commerce retailers are already publishing their holiday deals. Cutting
through the noise will take a well-planned strategy.
E-commerce has never been
more competitive. However, the market is also bigger than ever before. While
e-commerce has been growing steadily for years, it has grown exponentially
since the Covid-19 pandemic hit last year. Green Street retail analyst Vince
Tibone told the New York Times that Covid “pulled forward five years of fallout
into an 18-month period” for the retail industry. Leading retailers including
Walmart, Target and Amazon reported staggering growth in their e-commerce
business last year.
While some may have thought
this expansion of online shopping and related services is temporary, a number
of experts believe the shift to e-commerce is permanent. Walmart chief
executive Doug McMillon said the company believes the shift in how customers
shop is largely here to stay.
All things considered, this
is good news for any e-commerce business: Growing markets and more customers
mean businesses will flourish. However, as more retailers are moving online,
marketing campaigns need to work harder to stand out.
Align Your Organic And Paid
Creating a successful
holiday marketing campaign starts with clearly defined goals. Increased sales
are not always the obvious answer. Raising brand awareness or boosting website
traffic is just as valid and maybe better suited to your organization.
Organic and paid-for search
engine marketing work hand in hand. Search engine optimization grows organic
traffic, but it can take time to see results. Adding terms that are pertinent
to holiday shopping can help a business’s rankings but may not be fast enough
for anyone starting now.
“Digital transformation” is the
mantra in many companies these days, as leaders look to leverage technology to
boost productivity and customer happiness, reduce bottlenecks and operating
costs, and upgrade their security posture. Still, while large-scale disruption
may be the desired goal, many new or small businesses must take an incremental
approach when it comes to implementing tech solutions.
Fortunately, there are a number of
simple tech solutions that can help businesses manage their workflows, analyze
data, improve cybersecurity and more, all at a reasonable cost and without the
need for a fully rounded IT team. Below, 14 industry leaders from Forbes
Technology Council share their recommendations for low-cost, high-impact IT
initiatives businesses that need to start their digital transformations on a
smaller scale can leverage.
1. Invest In A Robust CRM
Implement a CRM tool that can
standardize your client lists and workflows, automate communications and more.
There are many amazing tools that are currently available, including HubSpot,
BOOSTR and others. These tools have a low barrier to entry but offer compelling
customization opportunities for each organization’s needs. – Amanda Dorenberg,
2. Implement Multifactor
In this age of remote work,
implementing multifactor authentication should be at the top of every IT team’s
list. Small businesses tend to be laggards in adopting new tech due to the
costs of implementation and training. When it comes to MFA, the costs are low
and the time to implement is minimal, but the impacts on your security posture
are high. Check out Microsoft Authenticator and Google Authenticator, which are
free, as well as Duo. – Mike Murphy, IT GOAT
There are thousands of
potential digital marketing strategies out there. But in the 11 years I’ve
spent running my own marketing agency and consulting for various businesses,
I’ve learned that there are really only four key elements that every digital
marketing strategy needs.
If your strategy
consistently includes these four elements, you already have a leg up on the
competition. And if your digital marketing doesn’t include these, you’re likely
missing out on new leads, sales and growth.
Let’s start with the first:
1. An Ideal Customer
Any great digital marketing
strategy starts with research about your core prospect to make up your ideal
customer profile — your ICP.
At a minimum, this
MORE FOR YOU
Empathy Is The Most
Important Leadership Skill According To Research
Why U.S. Talent Shortages
Are At A 10-Year High
You Probably Need More
Friends—Here’s How To Make Them
• Geographic region
• Core problem they’re
Thanks to a wealth of great
marketing tools today, you can find this data from existing customers pretty
easily. If you don’t have this info already, you can pay for market research
services, perform keyword research or even participate in online forums where
your customers hang out.
Bottom line: You want to
know as much of this demographic data as possible. Knowing this data allows you
to envision your prospect vividly as if you’re talking to them one on one.
As companies continue to
reap the benefits of digital marketing, new research suggests that they are
investing more in this area to improve their overall performance.
The 27th edition of The CMO
Survey was recently published by Deloitte, the Fuqua School of Business at Duke
University, and the American Marketing Association. Statistics showed that over
the last year, most companies (77.4%) invested in the optimization of their
website to improve the performance of their digital marketing activities. This
was followed by digital media and search (69%), data analytics (65.7%) and
direct digital marketing (63.6%).
Interestingly, many intend
on automating some of their efforts in the near future. The majority of
respondents (37.7%) said that they will be increasing their use of artificial
intelligence or machine learning by upwards of 40% over the next three years,
specifically for marketing initiatives.
Automation for Success
Some organizations are
turning to automation to continue benefiting from digital marketing, but
previous research indicates that it will not come without obstacles.
Ascend2 conducted its
“Optimizing Marketing Automation” survey, and data showed that only 46% of
best-in-class marketers claimed they are “very successful” at achieving their
top priorities through marketing automation optimization. Some of the most
common barriers to marketing automation success are achieving data unification
(38%), improving the user experience (37%) and streamlining marketing processes
Marketers are also still
struggling with delivering personalized content (44%), integrating all of their
marketing systems (43%), and creating a successful strategy (41%).
marketing is utilizing internet-based mediums to promote and advertise. Digital
marketing offers several mediums for businesses to benefit from. Digital
marketing also provides an excellent opportunity of expanding businesses
conveniently across borders. However, whether promoting the business locally or
internationally, you have to learn about the preferences and behavior of the
audience. Companies may not be able to market and meet the demands. In such a
scenario, digital marketing agencies can be a beneficial investment.
example, if you are targeting the United States, the first requirement is to
understand geography. Narrowing down your scope can offer better results. In
such a scenario, a local digital agency can be more fruitful. Hence, if you are
targeting San Francisco in the United States, the Digital marketing agency San
Francisco can help you with the right marketing techniques.
analyze the demographics, behavior, and audience demands closely which can be
used for promotions. Their understanding of culture and local nuances can
increase your brand awareness and sales. A Digital marketing agency in San
Francisco can help you derive the best strategy for marketing ensuring
To know if
you are on the right track, let’s understand the five best digital marketing
strategies for boosting your online presence:
Engine Optimization (SEO) is an essential marketing strategy for increasing
your online visibility. It utilizes the search engines algorithm for ranking
your website or blogs on top of the search results.
percent of people search for products and services online today. SEO helps to
bring the audience to you, rather than you going to them. It increases your
business traffic and credibility. As you might require keywords and SEO
knowledge to perform better, a digital marketing agency San Francisco can
empower you to reach your audience locally.
Marketing helps you to reach out to your audience through captivating content
and connecting them to your business. The content isn’t an advertisement but
also a platform for increased awareness.
well-formulated content can fascinate your audience towards your brand. It
helps with increased engagement and audience attention.
media is the craziest and revolutionary platform for marketing in the present
scenario. Starting from Orkut and moving to Clubhouse, it has caused a
remarkable change in human life. Social Media offers a wide reach. The
marketing campaigns help you target your audience without any complication.
It offers the best promotion with the right
targeting metric. To be able to set the metrics right, seek guidance from a
digital marketing agency San Francisco.
pandemic, we saw a huge influx of businesses go digital. Financial
institutions, healthcare systems, apparel, fitness, even grocery stores were
all hastily forced to move online. Massive technology shifts took place without
much planning. Some businesses made the move and found themselves unprepared
for the upkeep and overall management the change required.
the technology, one thing remains constant: a human needs to be engaged in the
work to catch errors and solve the problems automation can’t. Technology might
have allowed companies to adapt to the changing landscape during the pandemic,
but without the proper human oversight, issues are inevitable.
reason many companies aren’t getting the full value out of technology and
software is they haven’t done their homework to know how to best optimize it.
Many businesses are trying to solve fast for digital first and can’t. They end
up investing in software or technology to help, but without a plan or a
strategy in place. This frustrates employees, which has a negative impact on
customer experience, which affects the employee experience… and the cycle
repeats until something gives.
need to invest in data architecture.
time to do the work. Create a solid foundation as you go digital. The number
one priority: Plan and build your company’s data architecture.
Most companies need to start with building a data architecture that is
cross-functional. This means aggregating and mining data across departments and
from all the different platforms being used, such as CRM data, email marketing
data, website analytic data, and customer service data. This data is usually
collected and stored in a data warehouse, a central repository of data that can
be analyzed to make more informed decisions.
includes your tech stack. Identifying key areas of data points that can be
leveraged across functions can help with customer journey mapping across the
business. Figuring out what data points are necessary for products as customers
use them in the first 60 days, 1 year, 2+ years. Those are the data points that
need to be actionable and need to be what drives cohort analysis overtime. The
most important part: Humans using the data to make better business decisions.
landscape is ever-changing. With new products on the market daily, new
platforms being created to market them and new trends always happening,
businesses are constantly having to adjust their digital marketing strategies
to keep up. Considering these things alone, marketing to consumers is a booming
industry. Keeping up with the trends is a job in and of itself, let alone
figuring out ways to use the trends in marketing. Needless to say, there are
several — probably an infinite amount of — marketing strategies businesses can
use. Here are just three of the many notable strategies every business should
consider if they have not already.
analytics is probably one of the most underrated and underutilized marketing
methods. It may be something that is simply overlooked largely because if
compared to keeping up with the competition, it seems less important to be
prioritizing. However, by thoroughly understanding what consumers in your
industry are doing beforehand, you will actually be ahead of the competitors
because you will know how to better market to your consumers.
marketing, based on what you’ve learned about your consumer through analytics,
will go much further than just keeping up with the trends and regurgitating a
basic marketing strategy. There’s a fine line between truly marketing to
consumers and keeping up with competitors. Keep your strategy consumer-focused
by actually learning about what they want through surveys, polls and feedback.
Additionally, analytics can tell you how consumers have responded to your ads
and can even show you which marketing methods on your website, or your brand as
a whole, have gained the most traction with consumers.
your brand is so much more than just a simple ad or a video briefing consumers
on your product. Having unique, high-quality content on your site — and
promoting it — is a great way to build brand credibility with your consumers.
You can promote your content by sharing it on platforms like LinkedIn,
Facebook, Medium, Twitter and many others. Having a business profile on some
kind of social media is not uncommon today. In fact, it’s actually more
uncommon to not have some sort of business social media presence.
industry is swiftly evolving, and businesses must cope up or dwindle. Like
every other industry, digital marketing is a crucial part of the promotional
package. So, if you haven’t considered implementing online marketing strategies
to promote your business, you’re already lagging.
one of the most popular niches of the fitness industry and attracts youngsters
to the sport. If you own a boxing gym or a sports and accessories store, you
need to put your business out there for people to know that you exist. Digital
marketing helps leverage the internet to raise awareness for your business. If
you’d like to generate revenue from an existing business or set up a new shop,
get in touch with a reputed digital marketing agency today.
Promote Your Boxing Business Using Digital Marketing Strategies
own a small gym or a large one, a fitness store, or any other boxing business,
here is everything you must know to promote your brand. While word-of-mouth
promotion is crucial for upholding your reputation, modern marketing practices
cannot be ignored.
is the most crucial element of a modern digital marketing strategy. Your
website is proof that you mean business. Most offline shoppers look for a
brand’s website before opting to invest in what it’s offering. A website is a
trust builder and gets potential clients interested in your business. Build a
website that is informative, easy to access, and gives the viewers a sense of
purpose. You can build a website at home using simple DIY tools or hire a
professional for the best results.
engine optimisation is a key part of digital marketing and one of the most
cost-effective ways to increase organic viewers over time. Invest in local SEO
to rank higher for local search queries. If you own a boxing gym, for instance,
rank for keywords like “gyms near me”, “gyms in [your city]”, “fitness clubs
near me”, etc. Keyword research is an integral part of SEO. Find the most
competitive terms and bid on the terms with the highest ROI. We recommend
hiring a professional for maximum ROI, as it takes years of practice to master
are another key aspect that you cannot ignore. These are references to your
business that don’t necessarily lead back to your website. You must input the
name of your business, address, and phone number to get started. List your
website on Google My Business, and the search engine giant will automatically
start citing your business for related queries. Apart from Google, you can also
cite your business on Yelp, Trip Advisor, Facebook, and Yellow Pages.
In the coming months, businesses are going to become more reliant than ever on their digital strategy. Without wanting to sound too alarmist, in many cases it will be the deciding factor in whether they make it through the tough times ahead.
The unprecedented, almost-total disappearance of all channels related to live events and conferences, and the increasing barriers on face-to-face business, pose an enormous challenge. Key to resilience is the development of ongoing contingencies to mitigate against this loss.
B2B companies in particular rely on the annual circuit of trade shows and exhibitions to network and build customer relations. In industries that are not digital-native, they may also be less sophisticated in their digital growth and customer relations strategies. For smaller businesses especially, used to getting new customers through word-of-mouth referrals or on the strength of a hard-won reputation, their loss is coming as a shock.
Larger companies are also now finding themselves in the position of having potentially lost millions through cancelled events. They won’t claw back the hours of time and expense spent on preparations for this year, but insurance and flexible cancellation policies will leave them with marketing budget to reassign. Digital is likely to be the clear winner here, and companies – including ones that may not so much as had a Facebook page before – will need to move into social marketing, content marketing, SEO and influencer-led campaigns.
Of course, this means there’s opportunities out there for the taking, if you are a B2B supplier in an industry that has been slow to adapt to digital marketing. A key factor in resilience is adaptability. If it’s standard in your industry to go out and meet new customers face-to-face before you do business, adapting may mean opening new channels over web or social media platforms where introductions can be made and relationships fostered. In the coming months, your prospective clients are going to be less open to the idea of letting you walk through the door and shake their hand – and no-one really has any idea how long this will last and whether this will lead to longer-term change.
As Scott Jones, CEO of 123 Internet Group, told me “We are in uncertain times, but with the increase of remote working and a collaborative approach, companies are turning to digital channels and embracing the transformation. We have seen a real spike during the last few weeks from companies wishing to create or update websites, launch new e-commerce channels and create social media campaigns focused on home-workers and a real focus on using influencers and SEO to reach new audiences.”
Being confined to the office – or even the home – rather than on the road on sales visits or at events, means marketers have more time to develop digital strategies. This means researching where your customers can be found online, and how different approaches and tactics might impact your success. If your organization previously put token efforts into digital channels – because like a lot of other businesses, you had built your networks offline and that had always seemed to work – now is the time to revisit them. That could be as simple as giving your website and social pages a refresh, or a more innovative approach.
Ratnesh Singh, head of global business at events technology agency Buzznation told me that he found out quickly that clients did not want to lose the networking opportunities provided by the conference circuit. On top of this, they are looking for new ways to spend their remaining marketing budgets. He said, “With our corporate clients, events often consume 50 to 60 per cent of their marketing budgets. They still want to spend that money and they are open to trying something new.
“There’s a window of opportunity here – when things are back to normal budgets will be going back into live events and that’s what they will be spending their time on.
“But if they see the benefits and opportunities that digital channels can offer, this will become part of their long-term marketing contingency plans.”
As well as offering immersive 3D virtual events, Buzznation has also found that businesses wanting to become more sophisticated in their use of live social platforms. Singh said “Clients are turning to Facebook or LinkedIn Live. Often these are platforms they have dabbled with in the past but never fully integrated into their marketing strategy. Now they see value in partnering with companies like us that know how to help them make the most of these channels, to achieve better production values and more targeted campaigns.”
It’s certainly true that the coming weeks, or months – or however long this situation lasts – will be a challenging time for any company that isn’t ready to think about how they will replace the opportunities that have been lost.
As long as businesses approach the shift to digital marketing strategically, there’s no reason why it should just serve as an emergency fill-in, but could carry on providing long-term value when the world eventually gets back to normal. And of course, it would make companies more resilient to deal with any future pandemics.
With over 20 years of business, sales, and consulting experience SMS is capable of serving many market sectors. We provide the field level support needed to generate results and grow your business. Other companies may provide appointment setting services; whereas SMS will partner with you to grow revenue.
For many businesses, customer data is the lifeblood of their organization. Customer relationship management (CRM) software organizes that information into a single console, making it easy to access an...
It is far from surprising that home builders might have shortcomings in understanding the intricate complexities of modern marketing. After all, you’re busy doing what you do best: building homes. H...