Selling business software is no longer a straightforward task, especially since your prospects are more informed than ever. In this new era of buyer behavior, you need a software sales process that adapts to the way your prospects are searching for their next software solution.
When you tap into this new buyer behavior, your sales team is able to influence prospects to convert into new sales leads – and potentially more closed sales. Use the following steps to adapt your sales cycle to the new buyer behavior and start converting more of your prospects into solid sales leads.
1. Harness The Power Of Marketing Automation
Marketing automation software is a powerful tool for tracking and responding to every new prospect in your contact database, and you definitely need to use it in the software sales process. Start by determining who your ideal buyer personas are (and whether or not your prospects match those personas) and then determine where each of your prospects is in the buying cycle for your business software.
Also, use your marketing automation software to create a lead scoring model that fits with the rest of your sales process. A lead scoring model tracks your prospect’s buyer behavior and website activity to judge if he or she has the right level of interest in your software and if he or she matches the desired demographics of your buyer persona(s). If the prospect is a good match, you know you have a solid marketing-qualified lead to send to your sales team.
2. Stay In Touch With Your Prospects
New buyer behavior demands that you offer more customized, helpful offers to your prospects before they are likely to progress in your software sales cycle, so use the insights you’ve gained from your marketing automation software to determine your prospects’ more specific needs and questions.
With this information in mind, stay in touch with your software sales prospects by offering them more content offers or event information they might be interested in. These consistent touch points help develop a long-term relationship with your prospects (and future customers) that ultimately results in higher revenue once you’ve closed the sale.
3. Keep Your Software Sales On Track
Once you’ve established contact with a prospect over the phone, it’s important to remember the linear nature of every business software sale – and to keep your sale moving along that track. The three main components of the software sales track are: dial, pitch and objection management.
The first two components of the sales track (calling the prospect and pitching your software solution to him or her) have been covered elsewhere, but not many thought leaders address objection management. While you listen to and probe your prospect’s objections, it’s critical that you discover your prospect’s key pains as they relate to your software. And, it’s just as important that your prospect discovers how your software solves those pains. One particular tactic that works well is to ask yes-or-no questions that drive directly to the answers you’re looking for.
4. Use Software Trials To Help Prospects
Stop thinking of your business software trial as just another way to lure prospects into a purchase, and instead shift your paradigm to see the software trial as an opportunity to help answer a prospect’s questions. In your sales conversations, allow the prospect to envision his own solution to whatever problems he’s facing. Then, with that vision still in your prospect’s mind, finalize a free software trial for him to test out. If his vision and your software are a good match, the connection becomes obvious to the prospect.
When you confirm the details of the software trial, ask your prospect if he or she would like to receive an immediate follow-up to answer any questions he or she might have. Once you’ve answered those questions or quelled any further objections, it’s the perfect time to send the prospect a quote for the final sale.
When you employ these tactics to help convert your contact from a browsing prospect to a committed sales lead, your software sales process is more responsive to the reality of today’s buyer behavior. And, when your sales cycle adopts this more customer-centric paradigm, you’re certain to close more sales and acquire more delighted customers.
Need ideas on how to adopt your software sales process to the new realities of today’s buyer behavior? Click below to download a free tip sheet from Invenio Solutions® to get started with generating warmer sales leads and more robust software sales cycles.