At the end of April, I spent 2 weeks in Phoenix, Arizona meeting inbound marketing and sales professionals and learning more about why inbound is the winning methodology in today’s business. I was very delighted to have a chat with Dan Tyre, who joined HubSpot as a member of the original team in May 2007, and has led the recruiting, training, and growth of HubSpot’s sales team vigorously. An authority figure on inbound marketing and sales, Dan is a regular speaker, writer, and coach to those who yearn for inbound success.
“In the old days, the buyer tried to determine if their problem fit into the offered solution. Today, the seller tries to determine if their solution fits into the buyer’s problem.” -Dan Tyre
The customer is in charge
Inbound marketing is about attracting people to your website with education, information and knowledge that makes it easier to solve their problems. Inbound sales is just an extension of that type of philosophy, where your sales simply matche how people are buying. Let’s face it, no matter what you are selling today, the customer is in charge.
- Buyers can now find most of the information that they need about a company's products or services before they ever engage a salesperson.
- Buyers have gotten better and better at blocking out cold and interruptive sales techniques (for example, cold calls and irrelevant sales emails).
- Buyers have heightened expectations around the experience of buying. They will control the experience, and they will move through the process largely according to their own timeline.
Tailor your approach
Over the last 30 years, possibly the biggest change in the sales process has had to do with a shift in solution oriented selling, where in the past, many people would show-up to the demonstration and try to find some cursory needs. In the inbound sales process, on the other hand, you focus on specifics, as you are trying to understand where somebody is in the buying process and then tailor your approach accordingly. You need to show the information that would help solve individual problems and thus move the potential customer from the awareness stage to the consideration stage.
You also want to make sure that you are not just pushing the potential customer into a purchasing decision, but instead you are starting to lay the foundation for the growth of an ongoing relationship. With legacy sales the buyer was responsible for picking the right solution, whereas today, in the age of social media and in the age where you have to be a little bit more selective in choosing your clients, you as a sales rep want to make sure it’s a good fit. Because if it’s not, it’s likely that the client will be very vocal about their particular experience.
Learn how to tailor your approach and double your close rate with pre-meeting profiling: