Previous blogs in this series delved into identifying your persona (ideal contacts who may potentially buy from you) and using the right content (information that is important to that persona) to find them. Now that we have successfully FOUND leads (or they’ve found us) we need to CAPTURE all related interactions as they occur. This is a valuable step in Revenue Performance Management!
What do we mean by “interactions?” In our previous blog, we used the cases of Engineer Ernie (looking for technical information) and Buyer Barney (looking to save money) as your potential customers. Your content, including your blog and white paper, attracted Ernie and impressed Barney. As they interacted with your website by downloading or requesting information, they left their name, title, email address and company name. You now know who they are, how/when they came to you, and what content they looked at. Because you CAPTURED their trail of activities, you know where they are in their buying cycle and you can follow up with them with the right information!
Had you NOT captured this information, you might send them the same email twice or send them information on a product that doesn’t interest them. You might call them before they are ready to speak to a live person. You might LOSE them as a customer!
OK - so we must capture information. But where do we start? How do we capture all of this important stuff? There are Marketing Automation and Salesforce Automation tools available to help! A Marketing Automation tool such as HubSpot captures data on all of a prospects' interactions with your content. That's right - if Engineer Ernie visits your website, reads your blogs, signs up for your emails and likes you on social media, it's all CAPTURED in one place! We can then further develop our relationship with Ernie; we have his permission to contact him, and we know when he's ready to engage based on his behavior. Our Marketing Automation tool helped us send out the right information to the right person at the right time, while keeping track of any and all pertinent information. It’s much easier than trying to capture a buyer’s interactions in an old notebook or in a simple spreadsheet.
Another important resource is Salesforce Automation (SFA). We at Acadia have worked with a SFA tool for over 10 years. It is our living, breathing database of personal contacts – people that we have encountered at meetings, trade shows or networking events, or referrals, current customers, and more. Ten years ago, we used this tool as a simple online rolodex. We've since developed it into a real-time sales dashboard that captures all interactions with these contacts and reflects predictable sales activities and results.
No matter which tools you are using, the key to successful data capturing is to PLAN ahead. Start at the beginning of your virtual relationship. Gather data on all digital interactions and you can nurture your contacts into successful clients and trusted buyers. Let’s face it – you don’t walk into a bar thinking you will come out with an engagement ring. You have to develop a relationship – and CAPTURE the heart of an attractive mate. Why don’t we realize this in business?