Sales Automation for more selling time

Have you ever been unable to close a potential deal because you lost track of it in time? Do you spend too much time entering leads into your CRM system and maintaining the record over time? And are you just as tired of time-consuming scheduling with customers or prospects that require multiple emails to be sent back and forth? Countless such frustrating trifles in your daily sales routine not only have a negative impact on your mood, but also paralyze your sales process. Because they tie up resources that you should better invest in active sales. The good news: Many of these time-consuming tasks can be easily automated using software and AI. With the help of sensible sales automation, you can get rid of unpleasant tasks, increase your efficiency in sales and often also the satisfaction of your customers. Here are a few examples:

sales representative in Sales Automation

Automate lead management

Your CRM system is the pivotal point of many sales automation solutions. A lot of hard work flows in here manually, which can be significantly reduced with the help of simple automation solutions. For example, instead of regularly searching LinkedIn for new interesting contacts and clicking your way through countless profiles that have been known for a long time, as a premium user you can simply have the new profiles sent to you according to your preset search criteria. Combined with a clever data enhancement solution, for example the Implisense API, your CRM system is automatically filled with all relevant data for your leads – you save yourself the manual input and last but not least the research of this information. On top of that, trigger events for your contacts can be delivered free of charge on a daily basis so that you never miss a promising contact occasion again. And if you want it easy, Implisense Leads will identify the similarities between your best customers and suggest other companies that are likely to have a strong interest in your products. The only thing you still have to do by yourself is make a call.

Sales automation during customer contact

Speaking of calling: Automating customer contact using self dialers or mass mailings is usually not a very promising option. Instead, by cleverly automating the many small time wasters around you, you gain more time to focus on this core aspect of sales. For example the tracking of your contact history with the prospective customer: When you have phoned or emailed with whom, you do not have to note manually anymore. You can also have this done by software. With some services, you can even have the AI create a brief summary of the most important topics from your telephone call.

Even the scheduling with your customers and prospective customers does not need to include diverse mails. Use tools or web services that allow you to share a number of appointment slots in your calendar and allow the person you’re talking to to to simply click into one of them. This gives you more time to prepare for the call. That’s Sales Automation, too.

Automatic reporting reduces management workload

Of course, not only the filling of your CRM system can be automated, but also its interpretation. Automated reporting provides the team leader with important key figures for the efficient control of the sales department. In this way, internal processes can be further optimized on this basis.

Many little elements that will relieve you in your daily work. Create more space for active sales with the help of clever sales automation. In the end, software and AI achieve the feat of leaving your customers with more human resources. The basis for an inspiring customer experience and a genuine relationship of trust.

3 use cases for dark data analysis in marketing & sales

Data is the new currency in marketing and sales. The processes in these departments are becoming more and more data-driven – certainly also in your company. However, the more sales and marketing rely on it, the more important it is that the data on which decisions are based is really the right and relevant data. But this is not always the case. Because most tech platforms are only able to collect and process a small part of the available information. Namely, visible and structured data that almost always refer to the past. A true treasure of data of multiple size lies beneath the surface, which would enable much more precise statements in real time as well as highly probable forecasts – dark data. The problem is that they hide largely unstructured in a large number of scattered sources.

Dark Data - unstructured dataThe great thing is that AI is increasingly capable of detecting, collecting and – above all – interpreting this unstructured data. This gives you much deeper insights into your leads and customers, enables you to react more quickly to changes and provides you with more information on whether you are using the right data points as the basis for segmenting your contacts.

Three typical examples of how you can use Dark Data in your marketing and sales:

Use Case 1: In-depth insights for preparing calls

Technology profile e.g. from Dark DataImagine you could see at a glance which technologies a potential customer is using in his company, you knew in which countries he is going to increase his activities – without official announcement – or in which product groups the company is currently investing more. This and more information is already available on the Companies and Markets platform. And all this in a clear graphic format for quick preparation of meetings. The data for this is collected by an AI from millions of sources on the Deep Web. It interprets signals and mentions that have not been taken into account in conventional data collection – for example, the prerequisite for certain software skills in job ads. This turns a huge amount of unstructured data into meaningful, in-depth company profiles that you can call up with just one click. In a slimmed-down form even free of charge.

Use Case 2: Validation of data sets and trigger event detection

Even the most extensive data set is only valuable if it is up-to-date. AI-supported data enrichment and updating – for example using the Implisense API – also relies on Deep Data. Have records about your leads and customers automatically replenished and kept up to date. Quantity and quality of data in one solution. Another benefit of automatically updating your records: You recognize trigger events as early as possible and can react immediately. By evaluating the unstructured signals on the Deep Web, you know about relevant changes in your contacts even before your competition.

Use Case 3: Automatic segmentation based on relevant data

Data form the informative basis for the creation of positive customer experiences and the interpretation of customer behaviour. But are you sure you’re really looking at the relevant data points? An example: A restaurant wants to get to the bottom of the decline in walk-in customers. To do this, those responsible use customer feedback on food, ambience and service. But what if the main reason is a difficult parking situation in the surrounding area? If your interpretations are based on the wrong data points, you will draw the wrong conclusions and possibly even act counterproductively.

Implisense Pro helps you segment your customers and leads with Dark Data. Because the AI searches among the huge datasets it has created from the unstructured information for commonalities that connect your best customers. And on this basis, it suggests companies that also have these characteristics. The algorithm automatically determines which data points are important for identifying leads with great potential for you. In other words, the segmentation is really based on the relevant data.

Lift the data treasure below the surface by making Dark Data usable in marketing and sales.

White space analyses to identify new sales potential

Remarkable white spots were still visible on our maps well into the 19th century. Unknown areas that could only be systematically opened up by the pioneering spirit of curious explorers. A ” white spot ” symbolizes a lack of knowledge until today.

Now imagine your target market as a map: You have certainly already developed parts of it intensively, but there are guaranteed to be a few large or small white spots on it. Your chance to discover new sales potentials – through systematic development work, as used to be the case with the pioneers. And in your case, with the help of clever white space analyses.

white space analyses

The concept of a white space analyses

White space analyses help you to identify the customer or revenue potential that your company is not yet exploiting. So it’s about market opportunities that you haven’t paid much or no attention to yet, even though you could use them more efficiently and with less impact on resources.

In this sense, white space analyses can on the one hand be directed inwards. By looking at your own strengths and capabilities as well as your products and services and deriving the resulting opportunities and risks, you determine the potential for further developing your portfolio – in line with the needs of your customers. If, on the other hand, you look outwards in your white space analyses, identify previously undersupplied target groups or interesting niches in your market. It certainly makes sense to combine both approaches in order to find the ideal intersection of market potential and the strengths and potentials of your company.

White Space among existing customers

Upselling opportunities with existing customers are a big white spot of untapped potential for many companies. Which products or services does your customer already purchase from you and which could be of interest to him? The latter is your white space. In order to be able to answer this question as accurately as possible, you need to know your customers and their current challenges very well and develop a deep understanding of them. But the effort is worth it. Upselling is many times more efficient than winning new customers.

Moreover, this white space is not only an opportunity for you, but also a risk – if you leave it untapped. Because then it may happen that your customer will sooner or later look to your competitor for a solution to the challenges you have not yet considered. And you will lose it completely in the meantime. To remain in the map metaphor: If you do not put your flag in the undeveloped area, there is a risk that someone else will do it.

White Space of your competitors

Of course, the reverse strategy can also be derived for you from this circumstance: Use the white space that your competitors leave unnoticed by their customers. To do this, you must not only know a lot about the strengths of your own company or product and the customer concerned, but also understand the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors. Find out where you really are better – and use exactly that to close the supply gap of your competitors’ customers. Ask yourself: Which problems of these customers can you solve for which your competitor has no recipe? In this case, this is your white space.

White Space in the market

In addition to supply gaps with your customers and those of your competitors, there are certainly potential customers on the market who have been overlooked or deliberately not served by the two of you. Niche target groups that are not covered by a classic target customer analysis, but nevertheless offer attractive sales potential. Search for such groups and deal with their very specific needs. If you succeed in making such niche target groups a suitable, sharply tailored offer, you will be able to develop this submarket for your company almost without competitive pressure.

White-Space-Analyses need reliable data

Knowledge gaps can logically only be closed by knowledge. Usually, the white spots are not the obvious sales opportunities, but those that only reveal themselves after an intensive engagement with the corresponding target group or the concrete customer. In order to see your white space, you need to understand the specific challenges of your current or potential customers – and for this you need extensive data. If necessary, also about your competitors. Implisense Pro provides you with a huge database that you can use for your white space analyses. In particular, you can identify upselling potentials or cluster niche target groups with Implisense with just a few clicks.

Open up the white spots in your market and in your customer database. This is a very efficient way to recover previously wasted sales potential with little use of resources.

 

What are firmographics?

As the conceptual similarity already suggests, the term firmographics basically describes something like demographic data – only for companies instead of for persons. In Germany, this term is still relatively uncommon, although many of us use firmographic classifications on a daily basis.

firmographics in B2B marketing

The purpose of firmographics

Firmography allows marketers in the B2B context to describe and subdivide their target groups in a similar way as B2C companies do with the help of demographic variables. Instead of age, place of residence and net income, a companyographic categorization uses variables that make sense for grouping and segmenting companies.

Some of the most common firmographic dimensions:

  • branch
  • location
  • turnover
  • number of employees
  • legal form
  • group affiliation / independence
  • growth
  • profit / loss

By grouping them together on the basis of relatively simple characteristics, companies that are similar in certain respects – based on the assumption that they will also tend to be similar in their needs – can be quickly and effectively grouped together. Firmographics therefore allow a quick, rough target group description.

Boundaries of firmographics

Just as demographic data in B2C marketing can only ever describe a small part of a person schematically, company geography as a target group determiner quickly reaches its limits. Because the grouping on the basis few variables remains in each case extremely roughly and stereotyped. The target group can be reduced so very fast to a small part of all existing companies, but still the companies within this group will show substantially more differences than similarities. Firmographics are therefore only suitable for very superficial segmentation.

Only the amount of data adds depth

With each additional variable you use to differentiate your audience from all other companies, you will increase the similarity of the companies in that group. So in order to target your budget and tailor messages precisely to the specific needs of your potential customers, you need a sufficient amount of firmographic data.

You can use the Implisense Pro database to accelerate their research and application. Filter by hundreds of daily updated data points and narrow down your target group with just a few clicks. Based on relevant criteria that match your product or service. You can also simply turn the tables – and learn more about your target group: Enter some of your existing customers and let Implisense Pro determine in which firmographic sizes they are the same or similar. This will tell you which variables are actually relevant to the description of your target group – and you can automatically have other companies that match this profile suggested to you.

Determine the really relevant firmographic variables and use firmographics in a systematic way to segment your target group.

Are you overestimating your target market?

If you misjudge your target market, it is not only difficult to evaluate your sales and marketing success. Above all, this circumstance will lead to you wasting resources on supposed interested parties who in reality are not interested at all. Conversely, a realistic assessment of your target market allows you to use your marketing and sales resources much more efficiently and successfully. Nevertheless, many companies still tend to take the categorization of potential customers too far – partly out of ignorance, partly out of false convenience.

target market

Goal-oriented segmentation of your target market

The most common mistake: These companies do not make the decisive final step in segmentation. The three stages of approaching your target market:

1. Total market

How large is the entire market in which you operate? For example, if you offer cash register software for laundries under German law, your total market includes all laundries in Germany.

2. Adressable market

Limit the share of the market to which your offer really fits. For example, if your POS software is particularly suitable for companies above a certain size, your addressable market could in this case include all laundries in Germany with 20 or more employees.

3. Accessible market

The fact that your offer could basically fit a company of this kind does not mean that you can actually reach it in a specific case. Whether there is a concrete need for an offer like yours depends on many more factors. By selecting potential customers with a specific need for a product or service such as the one you offer, you can narrow down your target market extremely promisingly.

The right answers through the right questions

Obviously, the success of the often neglected step 3 – i.e. the limitation of your actually accessible market – depends on you choosing the right selection criteria. Firmographic data alone is no longer sufficient at this point. After all, you want to know which companies are specifically interested in an offer like yours – and why! You therefore need to identify signals that indicate the level of interest among your potential customers at the current time.

It is in the nature of things that there is no universal scheme for this. The information you need to do this relates to the specific context of your own offer. To select the right data, you need to know and understand the purchasing process of your target customers. However, the following questions may provide initial clues:

  • Who are the relevant decision-makers?
  • Who are the actual users?
  • Does the company have the necessary budget?
  • Is it the right time for our solution?

Evaluating and using data

Implisense Pro helps you to obtain and evaluate the relevant data. The database provides you with hundreds of up-to-date data points on all companies registered in the German Commercial Register. With just a few clicks, you can select your total market based on the specific criteria you have defined – and in this way determine all the companies that form your accessible market.

Remember, however, that this is a dynamic structure. Since your available market should represent companies with a current need, it is a snapshot. Make your marketing plan accordingly flexible in order to be able to react promptly to changes. Implisense Pro’s daily updates keep you up to date in near real time when something relevant changes in one of your leads.

Avoid the mistake of inadequate market segmentation in the future and use Big Data for a targeted use of your marketing and sales resources.