How to grow your B2B pipeline in challenging times?

19 Mar

How to grow your B2B pipeline in challenging times?

By Marketing Planning, Marketing Strategy, Business continuity

This one is not another article about how hard it is to keep your business on track these days in which COVID-19 takes over a lot of companies and creates panic. I know it seems hard to see the bright side of all of this, but believe me, as a Founder of a Marketing Company that is up and running for more than 14 years, I saw a lot of crises come and go.

In the end, it's just a natural thing. It's how the economy works. You should expect it and be flexible because only the ones that can change rapidly remain in the game for the long term. This one is an article from which you can take some hints about how to be agile and grow after a situation that seems like a dead-end, but it's not. You'll see what I mean below.

First of all, keep in mind that a business is not a business without considering the people that are a part of it and the ones that are in your circle. So, take care of them first. Money comes and goes, but a leader from a connected domain of work, your employees, your customers or chain suppliers and many more, will be there now and in the future, if you know how to communicate effectively and if you create groups of people that are connected and ready to jump in when someone is really in need. In the end, that someone can be you. So, be supportive and even give without asking something in return, it will come back in a form or another. This statement is evergreen, but in these times is something even more important to have in the back of your mind.

With this being said, the NNC team created a series of live sessions to communicate with you and other like-minded people as easily as possible.


What will you notice in the time of crises?

Let's start with the fact that a crisis is not a static thing. It grows and evolves in stages, and you should keep an agile eye on it and adapt as you see that the not so fortunate situation goes to the next stage of its evolution.


Stage 1 - Demand decreases exponentially

In the first stage, you'll see that little by little, your pipeline is decreasing. Your value of orders gets lower and, in general, your services become less expensive. By analyzing your analytics and reports, you will see how your business is going in a direction that you don't like. I know that you know what I mean. Unfortunately, you already passed this stage by now, or you are in the middle of it, and you can see the outcome pretty clear.

What is to do? Adapt to the situation, be flexible, and as agile as possible. Ok, easy to say, hard to do. Can be. It depends on how you choose to look at it. I recommend you to take feedback from your inner circle of clients and collaborators and take immediate action. See what happened, take the feedback, retake action, and so on. This is not a time for never-ending brainstorming team gatherings. No, save them for other times. Now it's time for rapid action.



Stage 2 - Decreased Cash flow than Decreased Turnover

In this stage, salespeople need a lot of discipline and focus. Imagine that, in general, 2% of your campaign contacts transform into converted leads. In this situation, only 0,2% of people will respond to your campaign. So, your sales team has to contact as many people as possible to keep the sales at a rate that keep your company sustainable.

More than that, sales cycles get longer, marketing KPIs, although still valid only work on an X10 basis, ROI of any marketing and sales campaign gets lower.

An important thing to keep in mind is that you have to stop the ongoing marketing campaign and push forward the campaigns that work at a scale. In this scope, your marketing efforts should go in the automation direction. In the martech world, there is a large variety of software that is at a lower price now or even free platforms, which can help you address a large number of people at once.

So, do marketing and sales at scale, mass communications, content distribution, promotions, and freemiums, activates and discounts, cold calling, or any other tactics. Automate as much as possible!

Stage 3 - Keep everything flexible and Update Your Strategy Daily

What do you think will happen if you keep the status quo of your company like nothing happened or even worse than that, get scared, and stop doing everything? Your company will die in a rapid blink of an eye.

So, keep adapting your strategy to the crisis. Decide on quick activities that have a rapid impact, adopt new services and products that are lower cost and profit, and are specifically suited to customer challenges and update your strategy daily.

Use modern marketing and sales tactics: social media networking, building communities, and advocacy platforms. Don't freeze, act!


Together we are stronger

If it's something to remember from this article, take this - keep your clients as close as possible. Touch base with every one of your customers and prospects and learn what their challenge are.

Over Communicate everything - Remember, people's attention these days is hard to chace, so communicate as more and, maybe more important, as clear, as possible. There is too much noise up there. You have to obtain your customer attention.

Significant, as well, is the fact that you should communicate positively. Maintain a positive profile! Show that you are on it, don't make the crises bigger than it already is. Don't take me wrong, the situation is very real, but you don't want to create more panic in your circle, you want to be a factor of reassurance.

Involve all your business ecosystems in supporting you through the crisis with open communications, valuable exchanges, and community support. Seek active contact with any potential client, prospect, or contact in your professional network, partner channels, and even supply chain. Get every employee and outside contact to become your advocate, to mention you, to seek business for you actively. Network as much as possible, use communications and content distribution.


Genuinely help anyone in your network or ecosystem achieve their goals also

I can say from my experience that it helped forge employee and customer relationships, to gain a good brand and a positive word of mouth. In this way, we learned how to be prepared and agile, and to understand there is a way to survive and thrive in any market conditions. We came stronger in the end, and you can do it as well.

Let's grow together from this crisis. Connect with us for Your Marketing and sales continuity! Together we are always stronger.



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