Every company wants a more efficient sales cycle. After all, there is a direct correlation between a company's success and the time it takes to bring leads from "just looking" to purchase. So how can businesses shorten the sales cycle without sacrificing lead quality or leads' experience? The efforts of a sales development representative (SDR).
The role of a sales development representative is to engage and qualify leads. They take marketing-qualified leads (MQLs) and nurture them until they're sales-qualified leads (SQL) who are ready to be handed off to the sales team.
Nearly 90% of marketing and sales leaders think collaboration between the sales and marketing teams enables business growth. An SDR can serve as a link between the two departments, utilizing the marketing team's insights and collateral to nurture leads until they're ready to engage in decision-stage discussions with the sales team.
A key element of an SDR's efforts? Content.
The average B2B buyer consumes of 13 pieces of content before the point of purchase. Modern buyers do a lot of research before even interacting with a company. They want to learn as much as they can in order to make an informed decision. Not only can potential customers stumble upon your content in search results, but once those prospects have provided you with their contact information (most likely by downloading gated content), an SDR can send more targeted content to further educate leads and nudge them closer to the point of purchase.
Content can explain your services and expertise in a way that you can't in a basic email. Not only can it play a role in showcasing your company's expertise, but it can also highlight what your company does, its services, and its processes in a more consumable way.
Here at Influence & Co., I serve as the SDR. It's not always easy to explain our services to folks via email, so content about our services and processes are great to explain how we make creating and executing a content marketing strategy easier for our clients by saving them time and doing the heavy lifting of building the strategy and distribution.
One of the most important types of content I use are case studies. These pieces illustrate how our company has helped clients achieve measurable, tangible results from our services. I customize my approach by choosing a case study that most aligns with the industry or strategy of each individual lead. That's why it's important to have a variety of case studies at your disposal for different service lines, industries, and company sizes.
For example, we wrote a case study on our work with ProSource and how we helped the company implement SEO tactics to increase its organic search traffic. This case study explains how we approach SEO and includes data to showcase tangible results and ROI. Another case study that has been a great resource is our piece on the results Influence & Co. saw after pivoting our focus from events to inbound approaches. This case study explains how companies can switch to a heavy focus on content to save money and increase results. And because this particular case study is based on our own strategy, we were able to share a plethora of results and details to paint a really clear picture that can help leads visualize how this strategy could work for them too.
In addition to case studies, I often send leads relevant blog content and ungated copies of whitepapers. For example, our "The State of Digital Media" report is one of my go-tos to showcase how important it is to have content as part of a marketing strategy, what publication editors are looking for, and how the value and consumption of content is not slowing down.
Not only does content make it easier for SDRs to do their job of getting leads interested, but it's also awesome to be able to have an article or blog post on hand to answer leads' questions because it increases legitimacy and makes leads feel comfortable leaning on your company as the expert.
But what if your marketing team doesn't have the content available that you need to nurture leads?
Influence & Co. can help your marketing team create content that answers the most common questions salespeople and SDRs receive from leads. We can also help you create content that shows leads what makes your company or services stand out among competitors.
I'm a VP at Influence & Co. I love the St. Louis Cardinals, Mr. Pibb, and Reese's. My favorite things to do are spend time with my family, play outside, and wrestle with my Great Dane.