There are a number of valuable touchpoints that need to happen during the cultivation of B2B sales. When I talk about the cultivation of B2B sales, I mean how do you bring prospects down the funnel after they’ve entered effectively and turn them into customers? It’s important to note that cultivation, or rather effective cultivation, has changed since the beginning of the pandemic.
The first way cultivation has changed is the number of touchpoints during a successful sale has effectively doubled since pre-pandemic levels. Second, buyers expect a digital-first experience, not just in selecting would-be vendors, but during the active sales process as well. When you couple these two things together, they give you a new lens to evaluate your own cultivation activities.
Here are some examples of things you could use to enhance (and put some muscle into) your cultivation:
- Cultivation email sequences. Email is the granddaddy of them all. Cultivation emails were marketing’s first significant contribution to the cultivation of active sales deals. These emails could either be plain text or designed out and could include copy, video, links and attachments. These are typically automation sequences that come from a CRM or an automation tool to provide a series of structured touchpoints that address common issues that buyers experience.
- Internal automation. This is geared more towards the support of the internal sales team. The salespeople receive scripts and other high-value assets, including case studies, white papers, and the like, from an automation tool. They would receive notifications in their inbox with these assets at a specified time to remind them to craft a custom message to their prospects based on the scripts and to attach the respective high-value assets.
- Social and online content. This may or may not be the most obvious to you, but a B2B salesperson early in the sales process should make a LinkedIn connection with their buyers. This allows buyers and prospects to see your content – all of the blog posts, LinkedIn articles, posts, reports, etc. that you’re sharing. We should all be sharing online (especially LinkedIn) to serve as a cultivation tool across not only our network but across active sales opportunities as well.
How have you adapted your cultivation activities since the beginning of the pandemic?