The sales funnel described by HubSpot is “a metaphor for a traditional sales process from beginning to end.”, essentially it represents the journey your customer goes through when purchasing a product or service from your business.
We work with a range of businesses in the built environment, and the commonality amongst their challenges is that many don’t know how to align both marketing and sales teams to create synergy for business growth. This could be down to a lack of knowledge behind each process or simply not knowing which team works behind each stage.
In this blog, we’ll break down the Insynth funnel and define its structure, to inspire you to do the same for yours!
Insynth’s Sales Funnel
Our own sales funnel is divided into six sections; subscriber, lead, MQL, SQL, opportunity and customer. While businesses have separate funnels for sales and marketing, each section of our funnel is handled by both teams, and there will sometimes be an overlap.
Aligning your marketing and sales teams not only creates a smoother process to follow but also minimises the number of mistakes made. For example, at Insynth, our marketing team communicates with sales to pass on qualified leads; essentially, the sales team won’t be going in blind, as marketing will have gathered the information about the lead, for example, how to approach them and what services to provide. This makes for a much smoother process for our team and prospects going through the buying process.
This completely eliminates, the need for cold calls; instead, when we contact prospects, we know can help them. This creates a positive customer experience where we aren’t wasting our prospects time or ours.
What Is A Subscriber?
A subscriber is the first point of contact from any prospective customer; the subscriber will either look for a quick solution to a problem or research a new product they want to buy. At the subscriber stage, the prospect will read your blogs, look at FAQs, and possibly subscribe to your newsletter and /or follow your social media.
To ensure your subscriber comes back to your website, make sure your content is helpful but not too technical as you don’t want to overwhelm them; leave this for content for your leads and MQLs.
What Is A Lead?
A subscriber moves down to a lead when they start to download more resources, content, has increased engagement on the website or makes an enquiry via live chat or email. The lead is still in the awareness stage but is more open to providing contact details to obtain more advanced resources.
This is now when your marketing team starts to work behind the scenes.
After entering their email address and contact details, you can organise your leads into your CRM system to retain details for further contact, and then you can begin nurturing them with email campaigns and lead specific content. Lead nurturing is vital to maintain a good relationship with your prospects to gain them as a customer when they are ready for your business.
The key here is understanding that not all subscribers recognise that they have a challenge, and jumping the gun with sales outreach will leave a bad taste in their mouths. A lead is more qualified and therefore warrants more technical content.
It’s then up to your marketing team to set your lead as an MQL based on the amount of content access, engagement and other activity on your website.
MQL (Marketing Qualified Lead)
Leads move to MQLs after your marketing team assess your lead and qualifies them as a good fit for your business based on factors such as job role, location, the size of your business and challenges. MQLs are then passed onto your sales team to begin the sales process.
Whilst we know not every lead will turn into an MQL, your marketing team must be able to determine who has more potential than others before sending them to sales. Your sales team doesn’t have time to contact every person who reads a blog or downloads your content, that’s why sorting leads into MQLs are crucial.
Tip: Have a defined procedure for doing this, that way sales can hold marketing accountable for the quality of lead they qualify as an MQL.
In some cases, you may find a lead that doesn’t necessarily fit your business but still shows signs of needing help with their specific problems, you and your sales team can work together and decide what’s the best way to approach this. In addition, it may give your business a good brand reputation by going out of your way to help even if that is just giving some free advice via email or a recommendation.
SQL (Sales Qualified Lead)
It’s time for your sales team to take action. After communicating with your marketing team your sales rep should have a good idea of how to approach the prospect based on signals showing they are in the market such as increased website engagement, email enquiries, high intent content downloaded and live chat messages. In addition, you should be able to get an idea of what your prospect is looking for based on their activity.
The next step is to contact your lead, send an enquiry email or short video introducing yourself, or perhaps enrol them into a sales sequence. You will probably be the first human point of contact for your prospects so be as positive and authentic as you can, if you come across as too pushy you might just lose a customer. Find out what your prospects pain points are and discuss with them how you can help them, you also want to be honest with your clients. If you cant provide the services your lead requires, it’s best for you to tell them straight rather than suffer and break trust in the future!
After the initial contact, you want to make a BANT assessment to ensure the prospect is the right fit for your business and provide the right services to achieve their goals.
What Is An Opportunity?
Some businesses see leads as opportunities, but we believe the opportunity comes when the prospect is open to a solution from your business.
At this stage, a deal is created and more complex conversations can begin around how your business can help them with their needs, this could just be a project or a long-term partnership. Every customer has a different need so you need to tailor your guidance to suit them, personalisation will show them that you really want to help and make you stand out against any competition you may have. Again honesty and communication are key and always keep a case study close!
what Is A Customer?
[Service Team Responsibility]
In the last stage of your funnel, your lead is finally a customer. Your sales and marketing team must communicate with services so the handoff is smooth, remember the customer will be meeting most of the services team for the first time. You MUST make them feel like you understand their challenges as good as sales and marketing did. This will still be confidence within the customer.
At this stage, you want to be consistent in your work and strive to achieve an exceptional customer experience. So keep your work consistent, manage their experections and continue to communicate with your customer so you’ll both be on the same page for any projects you work on.
If you found this blog helpful, you can check out our new guide the ‘7 Pillars of Lead Generation’ which goes into more detail about the sales funnel along with detailing 7 of the most powerful methods to generate leads, you can find out more here.
Whilst the sales funnel initially looks intimidating, once broken down it clearly defines how your marketing ad sales team should work and collaborate to bring in a new surge of leads to nurture into customers for your business. The key to a successful process is aligning your sales and marketing together, making the overall process smoother for yourself and your customer throughout their buying journey.
If you found the information in this post insightful, we recommend you look into some of the most popular articles in the Insynth Blog regarding sales! Our favourites are:
- 7 Reasons Content Marketing Helps Your Sales Team Succeed
- How To Turn Your Building Product Website Into A Sales Lead Machine
- A Complete Guide to Sales and Marketing Alignment In Construction
- Digital Marketing Tips To Improve Your Construction Sales Leads
At Insynth we deliver a predictable flow of leads, customers, and specifications for building product brands through our inbound marketing approach, proven to reach a technically demanding audience.
We use the latest marketing techniques such as construction inbound marketing, to equip building product companies to grow sustainability in this era of digital transformation.
As the only HubSpot certified agency to major in construction marketing. We have a proven formula of bringing a variety of functionalities together including CRM Implementation, Web Design, Sales Automation, SEO, and Email Marketing to achieve your ultimate aim: Growing your business and gaining new specifiers and customers.