We already blogged about the four major buyer roles in a complex sale, so today's post is about gauging your buyer's interest level. Digital body language (aka what you do online) can tell you a lot about how interested your prospect is. Of course, this is expected to change over time, depending on what goes on internally where said prospect works.
In his book, Digital Body Language, Steven Woods outlines the 3 main dimensions that help quantify level of interest:
How recently did the prospect engage with your site?
Timing is everything in the buyer's journey; in fact, the same landing page download or page view can mean very different things at different times in the sales cycle. For example, a top of funnel data download after several months of interest might mean that a new buyer has joined the evaluation team.
You need to be able to respond to prospects in real-time. If you ring them up based on a whitepaper they downloaded 3 months ago, it's much less relevant than if you had done it 3 days after their download.
How often do they engage with your marketing message?
Do they download and view your content regularly?
It's important to monitor patterns of engagement over time. For example, a sudden spike in activity as opposed to a very steady, low level interest are two very different situations.
How deeply do they interact with your assets and resources?
Depth will vary, all the way from the "tire kicker" to the commited buyer. For example, someone who just skims a page is obviously not deeply engaged compared to someone who stays on the page for 15 minutes, watches a video, and leaves a comment.
The deeper they engage with you (ie. the more content they consume off you), the more open they are to being engaged by a sales team.
A prospect's depth level is also a good way to see what they're interested in (sales call conversation opener!), based on which area they download the most content from.
The Importance of Recycling Tactics
All funnels leak; you can't force people to buy when it's just not the right time. The tire kickers of today could be the committed buyers of tomorrow. You must have a way of keeping in touch with your potential buyers so you are top of mind:
- Don't be pushy and salesy. Wouldn't it be great if people actually looked forward to hearing from you because you offered something they wanted, instead of pushing your product onto them?
- Seek to engage with social media. That includes trying to entertain them and keep them updated with industry news. This is so that they actually talk about you and mention you to peers in the industry because you have something share-worthy to say.
- Seek to educate. Thought leadership is viral! But it's important not to reveal too much when it comes to your valuable business process secrets. When it comes to tricks of the trade, interest them just enough to click through, and give them enough information on your landing page to convince them it's worth trading their basic contact details for (first name, last name, email).
For our environment, we find that blogging is the most common (and we think effective) recycling tactic by far. If you would like to learn more about the buyer's journey, please download our free eBook on the subject:
What metrics do you use to gauge buyer interest levels? Let us know in the comments section below.