Back in 2016, I had a feeling that this marketing automation and inbound marketing stuff was going to cause a stir in the heads of my professional acquaintances.
In most of the conversations I had with business owners, I had a feeling that it was all nebulous to say the least. Intuitively (as is often the case with business leaders) they knew that “it” was going in this direction, but they didn’t really believe it, or rather, they didn’t want to believe it very much.
Take a minute to get back into context.
It’s 2016. I tell you that I’m in digital marketing which immediately puts me in the “highwayman” box. I tell you that it’s time to think about investing in social media prospecting and that you’re two years behind some of your fellow players.
I tease you by saying that the future is in marketing automation, inbound marketing and social selling (the term was not yet known in France) and that telephone prospecting is dying its death.
Those to whom I gave this speech told me that I would go far in life…But not with their money.
How to generate business opportunities in 2018
2016, 2018 or 2020, it doesn’t matter what year it is, the search for new business opportunities is an ongoing activity for you and your employees.
As with all human activities, digital forces us to redesign our work processes, and the way you reach out to your future customers is no exception.
It’s hard to break everything and start from scratch. It’s impossible to stay in the current situation and operate the old way.
The challenge is to be able to cohabit two ways of doing things and to succeed in marrying them over time. There is no magic recipe to unite the old and the new and take advantage of the best of each era. Here are 3 approaches to adapt to your situation to move forward at your own pace.
The “grand luxe” version
I blow everything up and start from scratch. It’s a bit like buying a second home and hiring an architect to redo everything to your liking. The great class. The pleasure of the work without having to spend the weekend at Leroy Merlin.
Your sales team is in place and continues to work without changing anything. Next to them, a small team of volunteers who want to get away from the daily grind.
Plan of attack on short cycles (90 days max). Tight coaching of team members. Technological investment reduced to its simplest expression.
Four cycles later, we stop everything and do the math. The advantage of this approach? You pull the plug on marketing automation, inbound sales, social selling and growth hacking consultants…and stop wearing these buzzwords that weigh down your brain every day.
Your team of experts is now ready to infuse new approaches to marketing and sales to the rest of your company.
La version « on n’est pas assez nombreux »
Are you tempted by the idea of the dream team but your sales team is more volleyball than soccer?
With a small team, it is possible to launch a new commercial war machine by relying on external resources that will pave the way and prepare the tools and methods and then transfer them internally. You can also internalize one of the external resources to accelerate the adoption of the new practices.
However, this must not become a bad habit and end up delegating prospecting ad vitam aeternam.
Don’t forget that delegating your prospecting means taking away a valuable source of information.
The “I wish but I can’t” version
Not much time, not many resources but a real desire to go?
Nothing is lost and you can embark on this project by taking the path that suits you best.
- The seminar: Half a day to understand the key concepts and leave with a roadmap. You can take advantage of this time to share with other leaders in the same situation as you.
- At-home workshop: A day with a professional who will help you define the strategy and give you a roadmap adapted to your challenges and resources. Tailor-made for one day only (please allow extra time to prepare for this day).
- Coaching: You address a specific subject that you wish to deal with in several one-hour sessions for example. Hyper-targeted and efficient if you have little time.
Two years later, marketing automation and my bosses a little lost
Two years have just passed since I wrote the survival kit for slightly lost bosses and we are witnessing in the marketing and sales field an acceleration of acceleration (thank you Fabrice Froissard for that expression). My contacts from 2016 are sending me emails asking if we can have lunch together. They would like me to execute for them the strategy I submitted 24 months earlier with the budget indicated at that time.
Except that the budget is doubled. The market is more mature. Their competitors have gone before and raised the stakes. Producing content is more expensive. Advertising costs on the internet are increasing (long gone are the days of advertising on the internet because it’s cheaper than TV).
You can say to yourself that it can wait until 2020 (we’re not two years away) and make your decision when the costs have doubled or start with a workshop or seminar to define your personalized action plan.
The time for reflection is over; it’s time for action.