Spring cleaning for your B2B marketing and sales funnel

Spring is here. In New York we’re finally coming out of hibernation to enjoy the longer days and more time spent outdoors. We’re also rolling up our sleeves for some spring cleaning.

Just as you might declutter and freshen up your home or office at this time of year, your B2B marketing and sales funnel could benefit from a little TLC as we approach the end of Q2. Maybe it’s time to clear out the cobwebs and close some leads who have moved on to different companies, fix some UX bugs on your website, or perfect your handoff process.

Even if your marketing and sales funnel is running smoothly (and you think it’s doing a great job), you should keep working on it and optimizing it. This is especially important now, with the economy shaky and buyers a bit more reluctant. You don’t want to lose out on an opportunity because of something silly like an unanswered demo request or a poorly placed button on your website.

What if you don’t have a funnel yet? Maybe your startup is at an early stage and you’re still figuring it out. If that’s your situation, this article from Startup Hacks is a super useful guide to get you started. 

Now that we’re ready to make your B2B funnel shine this spring, keep reading for our spring cleaning tips (with links to more resources)…

1. Do an audit of your content through a buyer enablement lens 

Look at your product page, your blog, and any longform content like whitepapers or webinar videos through the eyes of a prospective buyer. Does it answer questions they might have and help guide them towards a good purchase decision? Is there a clear nudge inviting them to take the next step? 

For example, case studies can be so much more than just social proof. They can include relevant details to help buyers understand the process more holistically. Some examples of these details might be: the specific steps of deployment, who is involved, the timing and milestones, and the speed of ROI. Weaving these things into your case studies can answer questions and eliminate the doubts your prospects might have, saving you time and resources in the long run. Check out our primer on writing strong B2B case studies for more tips.

2. Re-engage with inactive leads

Don’t forget about inactive leads that may have fallen through the cracks. Even if you didn’t close the deal last time, maybe now is the right time for your product to benefit their business. You can see if there’s any potential to bring them back into your sales funnel through personalized email campaigns or phone calls. 

When it comes to emails, a good way to break the ice and stand out from the sea of HTML-heavy templates in their inbox is a format we call “The Reader”—a plain-text email from an actual person. The Reader is filled with links to relevant content and commentary that will stick with your prospects and inspire some enthusiastic replies. Here’s a step-by-step guide to create your own.

3. Look for (and eliminate) small UX bugs on your website 

These might seem minor, but they can add up to a lot of friction and impede prospects as they move through your funnel. One example is unnecessarily long forms (no, you don’t need their street address, DOB, or blood type to schedule a call with them). Another example is a ‘book demo’ button that doesn’t redirect to a calendar where prospects can request specific times (leading to games of ‘calendar tag’ and lost momentum). Another is a landing page that’s a dead end with no clear path to your product page or homepage (ugh). 

If your sales process is a race, each of these UX bugs is like a hurdle that your prospects might stumble on and not recover from. Always be on the lookout and be ruthless at eliminating them. If you have a design department, have them look things over. If not, consider hiring a freelancer (we’re big fans of using Upwork for this).

The bottom line

In this post, we’ve shared a few examples of ways you can freshen up your B2B marketing and sales funnel to meet your growth goals this spring (and beyond). Whether it’s auditing your content, re-engaging with inactive leads, or fixing small UX bugs on your website, perfecting the details can go a long way. These optimizations will help boost conversions and prevent missed opportunities, especially during uncertain economic times when buyers may be more hesitant.

Marie is a Senior Content Marketing Manager at Blue Seedling. She’s also a runner, a painter, and a grad student.

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