Every business needs more customers to help it grow. But even opening that conversation can be next to impossible. Luckily, companies are beginning to understand that cold calls and pop up ads are often the problem, not the solution.
Instead of pushing a message onto the prospective customer, new strategy suggests you should pull customers in by helping first – providing useful content and information. HubSpot calls this ‘Inbound’. You capture leads by engaging customers first and letting them decide the timetable in which they reach out and ask for your product or service.
That’s not to suggest that conventional sales strategy doesn’t work at all, but that it’s a smart idea to think creatively and specifically about how your business attracts customers and what kind of strategy should be in place.
Concepts like ‘inbound’ are exciting – but how do you even begin to go about it? No matter what strategy you decide on, it’s a smart idea to reach out for help in managing leads and making sure that the right people are getting the right message.
There are two distinct ways of doing this:
Off the Shelf:
Like the aforementioned HubSpot, there are companies that specialize in building and managing leads for other businesses. They can be powerful resources and take away a lot of guesswork out of managing your potential customers. In the words of SalesForce: “industries and companies of all sizes can connect to their customers like never before using the latest innovations in mobile, social, and cloud technology.” That’s a comprehensive lineup of services and allows businesses to focus on other things while an outside party captures online leads and manages them.
If you do explore plug-and-go options like SalesForce, it’s important to consider customization needs. Sometimes, going with an off the shelf solution can limit how flexible you can be with your approach. For example, you want to control your branding. You want your lead management to encompass your branding. It’s important that your customers see it as an extension of what you do. Also, you can customize what data you need. Pick and choose which fields you need customers to fill in.