As companies expand their services portfolio or shift to solutions based offerings, their value propositions, target markets and customers usually change. Yet marketing and sales practices often do not keep up. This hampers revenue growth, foregoes opportunity and increases costs.
In addition, the majority of B2B sales, for both products and services, has shifted to digital platforms, requiring real-time interactions, while increasing customer expectations. Technology is now providing buyers with a significant knowledge advantage, changing behaviors and decision processes. Many more influencers, including senior executives and cross-functional teams, are involved in purchasing processes, exposed to the dynamics of social networks and on-line opinions, often long before a company has had a chance to present its offerings. The conventional sales funnel is losing its potency. Predictable, sequential (from lead generation to order), relationship based sales processes are transforming into complex “customer journeys” with multiple “touchpoints” and feedback loops. Marketing and sales are increasingly fusing.
Companies must therefore shift focus from expending resources to push products and services, to attracting customers through an ever increasing multitude of channels. More investment is required towards understanding what customers need at each stage of the customer journey. This, in turn, helps design and deliver superior, more customized value propositions and launch better targeted, more effective sales initiatives. Without a strong alignment between a company’s engagement and customers’ perception of needs, marketing messages or sales initiatives will not sufficiently impact a buyer’s purchasing process.
We are well positioned to help clients redesign or adjust their go-to-market strategies as they focus on services and, at the same time, come to grips with digitization disruption. Through targeted, analytics based, research we help our clients gain insights into customers needs and buying behaviors throughout the customer journey. We work to develop a far sharper customer segmentation, improving our clients’ ability to assess market potential and scalability of offerings and enables better pricing or investment decisions. Further, we help clients identify decision networks and influencers, develop customized value propositions, sharpen and individualize messages, and design effective customer journeys across multiple communication and interaction platforms. And we help clients manage reallocation of sales and marketing resources to where they can have the most impact and modify structures and processes to bring marketing and sales into tighter alignment and improve collaboration.