What is a Sales Pipeline?
Your CRM system monitors and keeps track of prospects – this is similar to your sales pipeline. However, a sales pipeline has the ability to show you what is important to convert your prospects into paying customers.
So, how do you convert your prospects while fulfilling your current customer needs effectively? With a workable and efficient sales pipeline. A sales pipeline is essential for knowing which prospects to target so you are invested in the right leads.
Your sales pipeline is an important measure of your business health. So what determines if it’s sustainable or not? Your pipeline is in operation when:
1) You are serving your current customers
2) You are gaining new customers
The question is, how do we make this process sustainable? Having a discrepancy between the two factors can damage your sales pipeline. Basically, you can’t focus your efforts on gaining new customers at the cost of serving your current customers. A proper balance needs to be maintained so that there can be growth and constant sales. There are many ways to achieve sustainability can be achieved by the following means if you are looking to achieve long-term objectives:
- Inbound Marketing
- Generating Leads
- Customer retention strategies
You probably have heard of all of these factors before, one to many times as well. You can although, find utility in learning how these factors are key to making your sales pipeline sustainable. After you read this blog the takeaway will be that you will know why you need to re-emphasize on these points in your business. This advice is universal; it works with all kinds of businesses.
Referrals are a free source of sales that can multiply depending on your attitude, level of demand and quality of service, therefore, making it sustainable.
There are two kinds of referrals;
1) Referral instigation
2) Referral influx
In order to drive towards sustainability, you need to focus on the second one. You can focus on this kind of referral by pushing your public relations, write about helping people and companies, this can also include integrating social entrepreneurial objectives within your business.
The agenda behind referral influx is that it calls people to you, which is more organic. Believe me, this is where you want to be.
Inbound marketing is an old concept but you can upgrade your tactics to make them sustainable.
For example, You can write a blog that links to flexible and long-term things rather than writing about specific and current events. The same blog you write about these two things has a lot more penetration and can definitely help in making your sales pipeline more sustainable.
In other words, writing about topics like “How 360 Degree Cameras Is An Essential Cornerstone For Your Business” may not yield long-term results but a topic like “How technology Will Evolve the photographic industry” will because it talks about future potential.
It also contains inquisitiveness which compels people to see your content. It takes more research and effort but the results are long-lasting. Similarly, you can apply this to your videos, micro-sites and many other inbound marketing ideas.
Leads are important for refilling your sales pipeline, which is key to sustainability and growth. If your salespeople are not focusing on new prospects it could lead to saturation.
As a leader or top executive, thinking about the long-term approach is essential. Today getting leads is not difficult but tedious and what is even more complex is getting validated and authentic sales data.
Customer Retention Strategies
To make this sustainable you need to focus on anticipatory services. An unwritten rule is that those customers who have been with you for some time should be eligible for some special treatment.
It is important not to lose sight of those who are already with you as well. Trust is the ultimate aim to ensure sustainability in your sales pipeline.
So the takeaway is simple here; however, to achieve the mentioned objectives consistency is key.
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Co-founder & Marketing Professional at Cloudlead, a B2B data company aiming to make outbound predictable and smarter. Moaaz is a certified Content Marketeer, Graduate in Marketing and Management, completed an enterprise sales course for SaaS at Stanford. He also has a keen interest in analytics and data-driven marketing.