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Unless you are a big brand or a well-known leader in your industry, it’s hard to compete. And it's even harder to convert leads into customers. You need the right marketing tools to influence conversions for your business to succeed.
I’m sure you've experienced it countless times. A lead reaches out for help and the first thing they ask is, “Can you send me some pricing?”. This usually leads to a long exhausting exercise of trying to convince the potential customer why they should pay you that large amount of cash to purchase a product or deliver a service.
Big brands can afford to let these potential clients go to the next cheaper option. Small businesses, on the other hand, are left chasing, discounting, convincing and pleading to make the sale. It's tough out there.
What I prefer to hear from enquiries is, “Can we get together and talk more about your services?”. In my experience, this often leads to a deeper conversation into their own business. There is rarely a need to discount or continuously try to convince a lead that we are the real deal.
Marketing can play a major role in influencing a conversion of a more aligned customer. By considering and implementing these 3 things, you’ll spend less time trying to “convince” in a sales conversation.
Some consumers will do their due diligence before deciding to purchase from you. But a vast majority will simply look at your brand, message, products or services and judge you based on what they have seen at a glance. This is why many consumers will automatically divert to purchasing from big brands. Despite the perception of these brands being faceless and untrustworthy based on mass market feedback. But more on this later.
Positioning plays a broader role than just “positioning to attract leads”. It will be a deciding factor for leads to either enquire about your products and services. Or move on to a competitor.
You need to ask yourself if you've positioned your brand and your people as the experts at every touchpoint with a lead? And do you have proof to support this? Many small businesses make claims to be experts in their field with little evidence to back it up. They then spend more time and effort during the sales conversations on trying to convince leads why they should choose them over competitors.
You want more leads who are convinced you are right for them. They need to hold a high level of trust in a brand. And trust in themselves they are making the right decisions. Customer trust is not only essential, but it's also a brand differentiator that makes or breaks a business.
Trust can be built in 2 ways.
Firstly, sit back and take a look at your brand assets. Ask yourself, “Does my brand convey confidence?”. Unfortunately for a small business, they can fall victim to “small business trust bias” where consumers will feel more comfortable going to a large enterprise over a small business.
It’s often said that a majority of the market doesn’t have a high level of trust for these larger, faceless brands. We always hear of bad or inconsistent service. Long wait times. And high prices. But despite the sometimes-poor customer experience, people feel safer knowing that these bigger brands are the experts. They have successfully positioned themselves this way. They will handle whatever problem the consumer has... at a higher cost, of course!
As I mentioned above, a vast majority of consumers won’t look deep enough into your brand to be confident you are the experts. Or see whether you are trustworthy. Your brand needs to convey that confidence at a glance. It has to be enough to entice someone to look a little deeper and make a decision.
We’ve all gone looking online for a business to help with a problem we need solving. And we've all landed on a website that appears as if it was designed and built circa 2005. What happens next? A majority of you would leave that website and move onto the next one. This website has not given us enough at a glance to entice us to look deeper. Or inspired us to start building that trusting relationship.
Another way to build trust to influence conversions is through education and information. 90% of leads in your database are not ready to buy from you. That means 10% of your audience is at a transactional stage. That 10% are more likely to convert into aligned customers if they see value in the relationship. This value comes in many forms and at different stages of the buyer’s journey.
If a business spends more time nurturing their leads. And serves up entertaining and educational information over a period of time. The 10% of “ready to buy” leads would feel more trusting in the relationship. They’d feel more confident that the people in the business are the experts. This is a slightly longer approach to building trust and confidence in your buyers. But it's effective in establishing aligned buyers and developing long-term relationships.
It’s one of the first places people will go to enquire about a product or service. Unfortunately, for a lot of small businesses, a website doesn’t get the attention it needs to effectively increase conversion rates. I’ve seen some shocking websites in my time. I’m still flabbergasted when I see bad websites in 2019.
As I mentioned before, your brand and assets say a lot about the confidence you convey to the market. If your website isn’t to the standard a tech-savvy consumer would expect in this day and age, they will move onto a competitor.
Phone numbers, email addresses, call to actions, addresses and contact forms all should be elements of a website that are easy to find for visitors should they wish to contact you.
Step back from the day to day operations of your business for a moment. Look at your brand and how you position the brand. Work on building trust in your prospective customers before they become hand raisers and ask, “How much do you charge?”. Sales can be hard. But with the right marketing in place you can influence easier and more aligned customer conversions.