What is Persona Based Selling and why it Matters in Inside Sales?

 

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High web traffic is encouraging, but does every visitor navigating through your website belong to the group that your business is targeting? Probably not. As per an Hubspot report, only 22% of businesses are satisfied with the conversion rate. One of the major reasons for low conversion rate is our inability to identify the customers or personas that your business is eyeing. This is particularly relevant for B2B enterprises. 

Consider the following example-

Alex Montgomery is the owner of a SaaS company offering agile project management solution to tech start-ups and mobile app development companies. Given the nature of the product, the following users or personas could be interested in the software solution provided by his company-

  • Founders
  • CEO/CTO of the company
  • Project Managers
  • Design Heads
  • Senior Developers
  • IT Executives

Diverting sales effort to the above group is what the persona based selling is all about. The premise is simple. Even before you start selling, you have some information about the potential customer. However, identifying the target group (TG) is only half the battle won. The real challenge is now to leverage that information in the best possible way. Enabling inside sale teams with a scalable and affordable inside sales software is one way of doing it.

What is Inside Sales?

Remote selling is synonymous with inside sales. Unlike the traditional sales route, wherein the seller goes door-to-door to find customers, under the purview of inside sales, seller initiates communication with the potential leads over a phone call or email. It is a very poignant and sophisticated technique involving social selling. Individual working in inside sales department are highly skilled and are experts in conducting product demons and presentations over the web. 

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It is am extremely high touch sales procedure and most cloud solution providers have been adopting this technique to sell their product and service. 

Success in Inside Sales Activity: A Well Defined Sales Cadence

Success in inside sales largely depends upon the following metrics –

  • Who are the personas you need to sell your products to?
  • What is their preferred way of communication?
  • What is the best time to initiate communication with a potential lead?
  • What kind of emails they are most likely to respond?
  • How many time to send the follow-up mails
  • What are their pain points or business challenges?
  • What social platforms the persona audience is using?

Answer to the above questions will help you define a sale cadence. In order to succeed in inside sales, forming a cadence is very important. It is a very scientific approach to formulate inside sales strategy and follow-up with potential leads. Relying on dedicated inside sales software can enable sales teams to develop habits that are result driven, predicative and consistent. Over a significant amount of time, your team will get a hang of workflow that will foster and leverage sales effort. 

Social Selling Integral to Persona Based Selling

In today’s time no marketer or sales personnel will ever undermine the power of social media platforms. Top CEOs, industry influencers, founders, and decision makers are active on social media. In fact, in many cases active social media activity is assumed as a sign of credibility. Recognizing the potential of the platform, social selling has become an integral component of inside sales.

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Social selling essentially involves building a rapport with the lead before pitching your product or service. But this should not be confused with social media marketing. A social marketing strategy is directed towards a large group of people who may or may not be your TG.

On the other hand, social selling is always directed towards a specific persona. For instance, Alex will reach out to CEO or CTO of a small and medium sized organization who offer app development services to their clients. The product could also be used by independent consultants and freelance software developers.

In order to sell the product successfully, Alex or his inside sales team should follow the following principles of inside sales –

  • Follow- Identifying industry leaders and influencers and start following them
  • Distribution- Sharing content or collateral along with a personalized message
  • Research Before outreach- The practice of calling a person without gaining some personal information beforehand is a thing of the past. It is advised to go through the profile of potential lead on Twitter or LinkedIn before approaching them via phone or email. It is estimated that a person is most likely to click open the message than a traditional email.
  • Join Discussion Forums– Getting active on discussion forums specific to your industry is yet another way to get attention of your potential customers. Answering queries or posting an industry analysis, predictions, articles will position you as a thought leader and will also help build credibility.
  • Offer Consultation– It is always advised to offer consultation with respect to the pain point before directly pitching the product. 

Concluding Thoughts

Inside sales is a very structured activity and is scientifically driven. It is often backed by an inclusive inside sales software with features like sales cadence, sales emails and sales dialer. The platform allows end to end lead management along with a set of sales productivity tools that enables person based selling in the most credible way.

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