inbound sales

What are the phases of an inbound sales strategy?

Lately we have all been hearing more and more about Inbound Marketing,  the Inbound Sales methodology and what are the phases of an inbound sales strategy.

What is inbound marketing?

To make it simple: Inbound marketing is a technique for drawing customers to products and services via content marketing, social media marketing, SEO and branding. After the lead has left you their contact info, the inbound sales process begins.

What is the inbound sales methodology?

When we talk about inbound sales we are also talking about an inbound sales methodology. An Inbound sales methodology is a sales methodology that gives priority to the needs, challenges, objectives and interests of individual buyers.

Within this sales methodology there are the 4 phases of an inbound sales strategy:

First phase of an inbound sales strategy : Identify

Before you start any sales process you need to identify who is your potential customer. Identifying the right business opportunities from the start can make all the difference at the end of the inbound sales process.

In the first phase of an inbound sales strategy your sales team must know what to look for to create a predictable and scalable inbound sales funnel, otherwise you will be just waisting your resources in leads that possibly won’t become clients.

On this phase you need to get to know your lead and prioritise the active buyers and not the passive buyers. An active buyer/lead is someone that recently visited your website, filled a contact form or responded to your company’s email.

If you happen to come across an active buyer you should do your research about them, ask for an introduction on LinkedIn and set alerts for when these leads try to contact you again or they visit your pricing page.

Second phase of an inbound sales strategy : Connect

On this phase of the inbound sales strategy you already have identified your lead/potential customer and now you have to connect with the him/her.

As part of an inbound sales team, you won’t be sending cold emails like all the companies do, first you need to identify your personas, where they work and what type of work they do in their industry.

When you have done this you can identify who your personas are you can start identifying what is the best medium to contact them. Not everyone is the same and as an inbound sales person you have to know how deliver a tailored message to them and educate them on your product or service instead of trying to sell it directly.

Once your sales team has done this, they have to help that lead to sort out any challenge they may be facing and help them see a path that will make them prioritise their goals. If the lead/potential customer  decides to listen to you sales team, these leads become qualified leads.

Third phase of an inbound sales strategy : Explore

Once your sales team categorised a lead as a qualified lead, they can start to explore all the possibilities they can offer that potential buyer and see if the product they are offering is a fit to the buyer’s need.

On this phase your team needs to start exploring deeper into the buyers challenges and what are their circumstances. Try to match their challenges and their goals while making them feel in control of the whole situation.

After this point start discussing a timeline in which your solution can help the buyer’s challenge and introduce the matter of the budget, taking in consideration all costs involved including financial, time, and human resource investments.

Fourth phase of an inbound sales strategy : Advise

It’s your time to shine, as an inbound salesperson you need to advise you potential buyer on why your solution is the best in the market and what are the competitive advantages your solution has that others don’t .

Don’t stick to script, speak from your experience and let the buyer know how your solution is going to help him/her achieve what he/she wants, this way you will have a better conversation with your buyer.

Once entered this stage you need to make a recap of everything the prospect and you have talked about in the past, reaffirm that your solution is the best one on the market and finally try to set a date to sign the client.

A sales methodology that works

The Inbound Sales Methodology covers every step of the buyer’s journey from the moment they were stranger until they become customers. The Inbound Sales methodology is a process that you do by giving the client something valuable thought the sales process.

If you have any more doubt about the phases of and inbound strategy don’t hesitate to contact us and we will give you a free consultation! You can se more about inbound sales on the link below or just contact us through our contact form.