Why did we get stuck with sales to big American customers,and how we solved it with the help of LINX
We sell a complex and expensive technology product (hundreds of thousands of dollars worth) to high-end customers, giant US companies.
In the last five years, we have been investing in the production of content marketing: ongoing articles, videos, monthly magazines, webinars, etc. In this way, the company achieves prominence in the digital space, far beyond its true size and achieves many top-of-funnel leads. Those of you who are engaged in creating marketing content are aware of the great effort required to create quality content over time. The problem was that despite the high exposure and interest from many customers, not enough deals have been secured.
The problem was that despite the high exposure and interest from many customers, not enough deals have been secured.
The company holds a sales manager in the Boston area, where there is a concentration of prospects. The sales manager is constantly meeting with prospects who have approached the company mainly due to the marketing content activity and trying to start a sales process.
We tried to reflect on the situation from the point of view of the decision-makers in the customer organizations and agreed that in their view, the level of risk in choosing an Israeli supplier is higher than that of American or Japanese competitors. We analyzed together what circumstances a decision-maker in a giant company will choose the product of a small Israeli company.
We have marked the following variables as those that can lower the customers' perception of risk:
Present a working solution at a customer similar and familiar, if possible, to the potential customer;
Obtaining recommendations from expert opinion leaders and from relevant laboratories that produce comparative reports;
Data that demonstrates superior performance over the competitors and a commitment to meet performance targets.
We wanted to validate our assumptions that improving these issues will lower risk perception and increase deals closing rates with U.S. customers. To do this, we have contacted LINX Market Intelligence, who we knew employs a team in North America that has developed a methodology to interview senior U.S. executives uniquely and gain insights from competitors, customers, distributors, and more.
To do this, we have contacted LINX Market Intelligence, who we knew employs a team in North America that has developed a methodology to interview senior U.S. executives uniquely and gain insights from competitors, customers, distributors, and more.
The research conducted by LINX for us validated our work assumptions and also provided the following additional information:
Marking the companies from among our customers and the executives' names in these companies who are more influential in the industry, which will be a strong reference.
A list of opinion leaders (analysts and consultants) and relevant laboratories, whose feedback is valuable and reduces the perception of risk in the eyes of clients.
In a second round of interviews, we were also able to identify what data variables are most important to clients. Those that will allow accurate, relevant, and impactful performance reports to be presented to customers.
As a result of LINX findings, the company's marketing plan has changed completely: Less content creation and shifting the focus to building relationships with a strong base of committed reference customers and industry-leading opinion leaders.
As a result of LINX findings, the company's marketing plan has changed completely.
At the end of February, we were able to host four expert opinion leaders and a senior manager from a company that is a reference client in our offices in Israel. Two experts immediately agreed to cooperate with us for a retainer and fees, and the other two stated that they were very impressed, would definitely recommend the company, but they do not usually do so for a fee for reasons of professional integrity.
During the Covid-19 shutdown, a first deal was closed with the involvement and assistance of some of the above factors.
For additional information, please see original post here (Hebrew)