A winning approach to grow business with existing clients
Evolution exists in the workplace as much as it does in nature. Evolution is necessary for survival and businesses are no exception to the rule. The respective roles of marketing and sales teams need to evolve to meet the changing behaviour and expectations of customers.
We put our clients on the path to Account Based Marketing (ABM) because it works. When traditional methods of generic messaging to broad audiences inevitably start to decline in efficacy, ABM drives much needed evolution for sales and marketing. Our approach led to the creation of US$3 Million in new business from existing African customers for Mobileum, a silicon valley based leading analytics provider. Here’s how.
Mobileum has thrived in the US and other territories as an analytics provider for telcos but wanted to grow their revenue in Africa. BeBold was approached to help strengthen the sales team, taking on the role of an experienced consultant, with several years of telco experience and an understanding of the African market. Having previously worked with Mobileum on product development, we began the journey with a comprehensive understanding of their products. ABM works best when you have a deep understanding of your products and the customers they target.
The ABM Approach
ABM involves a combination of establishing your brand as a trusted partner, deepening customer relationships, and delivering the right message at the right time (read more here). The approach is circular rather than linear, which makes it an ideal way to grow business with existing customers. For Mobileum, we got the team to start using customer discovery methods, implementing customer canvas and value proposition tools so they could gain the knowledge needed to become more than a transactional supplier. The focus became on selling less and understanding more about the customer’s needs.
To deepen customer relationships, we set up monthly account review meetings which included both customer support and inside sales teams. These meetings enabled the people involved to bring shared value, empathy and therefore room for negotiations.
At the same time, a dedicated marketing manager was included to assist the sales team in Africa to uncover the right opportunities at the right time. This role involved identifying early intent by analysing customer behaviour on Mobileum’s website and event presentations. Working closely with the marketing manager, we would validate the intent and set up an early qualification meeting with the lead when appropriate.
We set up a strict forecasting system to ensure we made contact only with qualifying leads. This included templat'izing technical documentation so leads wouldn’t have to go back and forth to get information, and avoiding the use of technical sales efforts until the lead was fully qualified. Qualifying a lead required very clear buying signals in order to move them from the pipeline to forecast. Buying signals included the client assigning a discreet budget to the project and starting the procurement process.
ABM requires sales and marketing teams to work together more closely than ever before. This sort of change in mind set can be tricky unless you’ve got a team with a positive and willing attitude. Fortunately, that’s what we got from the team! Initially, Mobileum’s sales team were not comfortable with this solution-based approach to sales, but the time we allowed for exploratory questions provided critical opportunities for open conversations and voicing of apprehension. Once the journey began, the sales team and their new marketing manager enjoyed the process and began to take proactive steps to understand each of their clients better.
With our continued consultation over the next 12 months, Mobileum closed a total of US$ 3 Million in new business from existing clients. The team was left with an understanding that deep product expertise in the hands of a sales person is more valuable than the ability for a sales person to manage pricing expectations.
Ready to evolve the way your business grows revenue? Get in touch with the BeBold team today.
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