How to Gather (and Use) Detailed Sales Intelligence

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GDS GroupHelping CxOs thive

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

There’s no doubt about it: these are difficult times in sales. That holds especially true if your team is in the B2B sector, with many purchasers practicing caution as a result of the continued uncertainty around the fallout of COVID-19.

Article 5 Minutes

As sales leaders, you need to keep the money coming in, and the temptation right now might be to get your reps making a tsunami of phone calls to every possible buyer out there. Casting a wide net may produce results, but it’s more likely to waste resources and demotivate your teams by sending them on a wild goose chase with prospects that were never likely to make a deal.

You need to use detailed sales intelligence to drive conversions. This will enable you to identify companies that need your solutions and are planning to buy.

But how do you get this intelligence? Collaborate with your marketing team.

If B2B sales and marketing teams come together around all the content marketing material you’ve got available, you can put together thought leadership and demand generation programs that will nurture high quality leads and arm your sales team with valuable sales intelligence.

This is a win-win for both departments; it’ll deliver a tangible marketing ROI and improve sales conversion. One of the best ways that this collaboration can manifest is in a virtual summit.

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Connecting with your ideal audience on a deeper level    

Imagine having all of your ideal customers around one table…

Virtual events can deliver that dream sales scenario for you. Perhaps even more beneficial is that, with the right event strategy, you can connect with senior decision makers, enterprise buyers and subject matter experts in a setting that generates deep engagement and idea exchange.

This means you can gain a comprehensive understanding of their problems ahead of time, allowing you to develop a follow-up sales approach that directly addresses those pain points, boosting your chances of a higher conversion rate.

Sounds good, right?

If you want to take advantage of the benefits of virtual events, there are a few bits of information you’ll need to gather and analyze correctly in order to help you prioritize leads and identify the best content and information they need to trust and buy from your organization.

These key data points are:

  • Your prospect’s project name
  • Project focus area
  • Project description & challenges
  • Estimated project timeline
  • Current stage for this project
  • Estimated timeframe for completion
  • Total project investment
  • Focus priorities

Knowing these things going into your virtual summit and the sales follow-up will give you everything you need to drive conversions and generate massive ROI on your B2B marketing activities.

Gathering information through data analysis

The depth and quality of that information can be hard to come by and does require some expertise in data analysis. If you don’t have that to spare at your organization, don’t worry. There are several virtual event providers you can partner up with to help identify and gather data on the right companies and guests.

At GDS, we provide executive B2B summits that bring purchaser and provider communities together to find solutions to real-world business challenges. We also focus on customer sales intelligence and research, which you can use to tap into your ideal target market.

Established providers have established audiences, and often come armed with a network of speakers, presenters and hosts who can get involved with your virtual event to add credibility and thought leadership to your brand image.

Virtual events aren’t salesy affairs; the senior-level figures that attend them don’t want to see yet another thinly-veiled sales pitch. They can see through that and will switch off if you bring that sort of content to an event. Instead, senior decision makers attend these events to gain insight, exchange ideas and connect with peer groups around shared problems. According to a Gartner 2020 Benchmark study, hosted events are 2.3x more likely to have a conversion rate of over 40% as compared with more traditional, non-hosted company presentations.

That’s why it’s important for you to also include subject matter experts in your event content and create an interactive and engaging format. You can do this quite easily with the help of a virtual event provider, and they’ll also help gather and analyze the data gained during the event so you can provide this intelligence to your sales team for the follow-up.

With the right information to hand, and an existing connection with highly engaged and pre-qualified leads, you’ll be giving them the best possible chance to close deals and land new customers.

The future of sales

In today’s world of big data, where almost every communication is conducted online, it doesn’t make sense to have an old-fashioned cold call strategy. Your sales reps need good sales intelligence to act on, so they can allocate their efforts where it’s most likely to deliver results.

Obviously, your reps don’t have time to be scouring the internet and doing the research needed to produce that intelligence, so use virtual events to bring your sales and marketing activities closer together. The beauty of virtual events is that they offer all the engagement of live summits with extra data potential, which means you can follow up confidently and use the data to adjust and adapt for your next event.

With a virtual event provider by your side, you can ensure a successful strategy for reaping the benefits that digital summits can offer, with the added convenience of the logistical legwork taken care of by someone else, leaving you free to spend time optimizing your content. Plus, a GDS and IFP survey of over 200 respondents found that 60% saw sponsored virtual events as being instrumental in driving highly qualified leads. What’s not to like?

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Helping CxOs thive

https://gdsgroup.com/

GDS Group hosts experts to help experts. GDS Summits help CxOs thrive: to confidently lead their companies through digital transformation. Enlightening, educating and equipping executives to solve today’s business challenges with tomorrow’s knowledge and solutions. 

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