ATLANTA, Nov. 18, 2009 – Today's B2B prospects can gather vast amounts of information about a company without ever talking to marketing or salespeople. This has created a new opportunity for B2B marketers to become respected members of this larger community, developing give-and-take dialogues so prospects naturally look to their companies as a preferred information source.
"The biggest change in this new buyer-centric environment is that marketing isn't just finding and qualifying prospects, they are building relationships-something that has typically been done by sales," said Silverpop's CEO Bill Nussey. "Marketing must now prove itself by establishing a comprehensive lead-management approach that utilizes each communications channel to react appropriately to each prospect's current situation."
A new Silverpop-sponsored report by Raab Associates Inc., "Lead Management: Get Started with a New Strategy for Buyer-Centric Marketing and Selling," points out that marketing's goal in this new environment is to both build a positive attitude in the mind of the customer and gather information to further interactions. At each stage of the buying process, prospects need different information from marketing, and marketing wants different information from them.
"At the simplest level, you build a relationship by responding appropriately to someone's actions, " said David Raab, principal of Raab Associates Inc. "In practice, there's nothing simple about it." Raab's report outlines the need for new buyer-centric marketing and selling campaigns that perform four broad functions:
- Recognize -identify individuals over time and across channels.
- Record -build a unified profile of prospect information.
- React -select and present treatments appropriate to the prospect's situation.
- Refer -involve human agents when appropriate.
Raab says creating a buyer-centric strategy requires a great deal of trust between marketing and sales to handle prospects properly. Marketing and sales must define the process, agree on specific rules, enable each group to verify the rules are being followed and empower individual salespeople to intervene when appropriate.
"The job of today's business marketers is to build relationships throughout the buying process," Raab said in the report. "This requires a conscious effort to design dialogues that both distribute information about a company and its products as well as gather insights about prospects."
To receive a complimentary copy of the new Silverpop-sponsored report by Raab Associates Inc., "Lead Management: Get Started with a New Strategy for Buyer-Centric Marketing and Selling," visit www.silverpop.com.
Silverpop's Engagement Marketing suite helps turn prospects into customers, and customers into fans. Silverpop's Web-based solutions enable companies worldwide to build relationships with customers and prospects through the creation, automation and delivery of relevant, online messaging. And Silverpop's strategic counsel, service and support helps clients with the precise level of training and advice needed to quickly improve campaign results and ROI. Silverpop makes it easy and affordable for marketers to create, automate and execute campaigns ... from first click to lifetime customer. With offices in the United States, the United Kingdom and Germany, Silverpop's engagement marketing technologies are used by industry-leading brands around the globe. Best practices and white papers are available at www.silverpop.com.
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