To begin, we’d like to thank you for continuing this journey with the Sales Lead Automation team and congratulate you on taking the time to boost your knowledge regarding b2b lead generation best practices.
Today will be just as helpful in equipping yourself as we explore content marketing strategies starting with market research.
Before we start, let’s review what we’ve covered so far –
First, we looked at the Sales Calculator and helped you determine how many marketing touches you need to generate the number of inquiries and sales-qualified leads needed to reach your revenue goals.
Then, we went in-depth on developing an Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) for your unique product or service. We covered who you should target, what those targets look like, their unique challenges, and their role in the buying process.
After that, we explored Advanced Database Strategies to help discover companies more likely to be “In-Market” for our product services, using tools like:
- SIC Classifications
- NAICS Classifications
- Job Boards
- Funding Announcements
- Intent Data
At last, it’s time to fine-tune your content marketing efforts.
Any good content marketing strategy aims to establish yourself or your company as helpful thought leaders in your industry. Your mindset should be how do I create demand for my products or services vs. how do I generate leads. You might ask what’s the difference between demand generation vs. lead generation, and the answer is quite simple. Demand generation is less about you or your company’s products and services and more about the industry and the people who make up that industry.
Market Research is a perfect strategy for collecting information from relevant contacts who work in similar industries and share unique challenges.
Like b2b sales best practices, where it’s best to start a sales process by asking prospects questions (Consultative approach), market research works the same way.
Where do you begin?
You start by developing a list of survey questions to ask your target market for information regarding their job role, seniority, industry, company size, number of employees, the challenges they face every day, and even their buying authority and media preferences.
Similar to how an ideal customer profile can help onboard new sales reps, market research can help educate the entire company on the pains and challenges your market faces impacting everything from your go-to-market strategy and product development to customer support.
Creating the Survey
Begin your survey by collecting the basic information on the prospect (Person taking the survey), i.e., job title, department, seniority, etc., and then the company’s firmographic information, i.e., industry, company size, revenue, etc.
Ask questions about your ideal prospects’ job role, pain points, and challenges. Here is a short list of survey questions you might want to include:
- What is your primary job role and responsibility?
- What keeps you up at night?
- What are your biggest challenges?
- How are you measured for success?
- Who do you report to?
- Who reports to you?
- How much buying authority do you have?
- Where do you go for information related to your business? (Associations, publications, consultants, vendor websites, social media sites, etc.
To name a few questions.
Next, we like to ask questions related to the buying process. So often, companies focus their market research on how companies buy their product and services vs. what puts a prospect into an active buying process in the first place.
So you might want to include questions like:
- What puts you or your company into an active buying process?
- Industry Regulations
- Poor Quality from Existing Vendor
- Outgrew Existing Vendor Capabilities
- Company Merger or Acquisition
- Company Consolidation
- New Company Initiative
- New Leadership
Again to name a few questions.
Collecting Survey Responses
Once the survey questions have been finalized, we start to collect responses from ideal prospects only. To ensure we have the responses from the right candidates, we add a qualification question or two at the very beginning of our survey.
You must ensure your responses are coming from people who are actively involved in the buying process of your product or service. Typically that means we collect responses from researchers, end-users, decision-makers, or financial authorities.
How Many Survey Responses Do You Need?
You want to make sure you have at least 300 responses to be statistically relevant across your industry (If possible)
Note that we use panel services to fulfill the minimum survey responses needed and supplement those responses using our mass email capabilities. Our database has over 100 million b2b contact records to target and collect additional responses from your ideal prospects. Even with 100 million contact records in our database, we often find it necessary to incentivize prospects to take the time to answer the survey. So we recommend giving away something of value, i.e., an Apple device or a $250 Amazon gift card for taking the survey.
Analyze the Results
Next, you analyze the results and start writing the research study based on the findings.
After a few rounds of edits, the final piece of content is formatted by our design team in how many variations you like, i.e., downloadable pdf, webpages, print, etc.
One of the advantages of Market Research is that it can usually be broken down into several smaller guides and blog posts, all pointing or linked to the master research document, which supports your search engine optimization efforts.
Examples of Market Research Studies we have produced for our clients.
Contact Shawn Elledge at Selledge@SalesLeadAutomation.com for any questions about our market research capabilities.