How well do businesses know their clientele? Even though every organization has its version of a perfect customer, it is not enough to skim through the surface of their personalities. You have to gain an in-depth knowledge of prospects, tailor offerings accordingly, and reach out to them on their terms. While this may sound overwhelming, it is achievable by investing resources into unearthing their pain points and need gaps.

If your solution appeals to a pre-existent problem or an issue the client does not realize they have, they will welcome you into their fold instantly. While drafting an astute pitch, your customer research needs to answer three questions. They are –

  • Who is actively looking for a product or service solution like yours?
  • How urgent is their need?
  • What triggered said need?

You can answer these questions by building a 360-degree buyer approach. By creating a 360-degree buyer understanding, you will sink into your client base’s skin and start seeing purchase scenarios through their eyes. This approach can also unfurl what your customers are genuinely interested in, who they answer to, who answers to them, and what roadblocks are standing in their way. Valuable information such as this will provide you and your team the ammunition to –

  • Eliminate friction
  • Craft hyper-personalized messages
  • Prevent missed opportunities
  • Shorten sales cycles
  • Improve customer’s buying journey and
  • Increase deal sizes

What Is a 360-Degree Buyer View and Why Do I need it?

Consider the following example – you go to a nutritionist for diet planning. Rather than looking at your specific chart for insights, they hand you a well-etched monthly meal plan that features foods you are highly allergic to. While the nutritionist did make an exhaustive business email list of healthy foods, it is still useless because they ignored needs specific to you.

As the nutritionist’s customer, you feel misunderstood and will find it difficult to trust them in the future. Had the nutritionist tried the 360-degree approach, they would have known which food items to take off the list and would have retained you as a happy and loyal customer for life. Therefore, no one-size-fits-all when it comes to every prospective client, and this is the very essence of building a 360-degree buyer connection.

In a nutshell, a 360-degree view is all your customer information in one place. Higher the number of parameters under which info is collected, better the richness of data. Think of a 360-degree approach as a relationship cycle which consists of information on a variety of touchpoints where customers meet a brand. These channels may include interacting with a business over social media, email marketing, point-of-sale purchase, etc. But this is not it!

When we say a 360-degree view, it also includes excellent customer service. Having a fantastic product today is inadequate if you are not aiding your customers with exceptional after-sales service. A customer also meets a brand when registering complaints, placing requests, or inquiries. Therefore, tapping into these markers, along with other parameters, can help you achieve a 360-degree buyer connection.

If your organization has proactively formalized methods to collect client information at every touchpoint, you are ready to leverage the 360-degree buyer approach to build long-lasting and loyal connections. Even though creating a complete picture of every client account can keep you ahead of your competitors, less than 10% of companies have a 360-degree view of their customers (Gartner). What’s worse is that out of this 10%, only 5% are able to use this approach to systemically grow their organization (Gartner).

How to Develop a 360-Degree Buyer Connection?

This approach is hugely beneficial for account-based marketing and rests on three primary points. They are –

  • Identifying the right fit of clients or accounts for your product and services.
  • Knowing the latest purchasing intentions within the selected number of accounts. Spotting intent helps prioritize clients with the highest propensity to buy.
  • Once you have figured the two things listed above, you must create immersive content to engage the right clients at the correct time.

Before you develop a 360-degree buyer connection, ICPs (Ideal Customer Profiles), or which clients fit the bill, must be defined. after which, you must work on figuring out the following pointers –

  1. Prospect Intentions

Sure, you have a list of leads (ICP) that perfectly fit the bill of becoming your loyal clients. But how do you find out whether they are interested in explicitly buying what you are selling? For this, you must scout products and services similar to yours that your target audience are looking for. Additionally, you can find information on third-party websites about the issues faced by your prospects that your offering can potentially solve.

For instance, say you sell a CRM application for hospital administrators. Based on your ICP and client history, you know that potential customers are looking for hiring, training, and payroll modules specifically. This piece of information shows you the intent with which they will approach a CRM software. Therefore, if your CRM application can focus on tailoring these areas according to customer stipulation, you will bag a slew of deals.

  1. Stage of Engagement

While identifying and catching the demands of your prospects and loyal customers early helps inform the innovation and marketing team; insights on how they engage with your brand speaks volumes on the best way to reach them. Engagement insights reveal which clients are presently interacting with your business and how.

Figuring out the engagement statistics can tell you which accounts are visiting your website or other landing pages, attending your online/ offline events, opening your email communication, and downloading gated content. All these markers are proof of high-level engagement. Information from such parameters adds to 360-view of a prospect and tells an organization what they are interested in and when. The onus of reaching out and reeling in the client then falls on your sales and marketing teams.

Over to You

In summation, the best way to develop a 360-degree buyer connection is by defining your ICPs, figuring out their intent, and deriving engagement insights. With the information extracted from these markers, you can hyper-personalize your pitch, tweak your strategy in real-time, and significantly improve your customer’s buying experience, thus leading to a higher conversion rate.

Author - Mukundan A P
Mukundan A P Author at Span Global Services With having spent over 18 years with the Champions group leading the APAC territories in the data domain, Mukundan has a reputation of helming some of the most formidable projects in the B2B sector. He is known for his ability to build relationships and make headway for his clients using his expertise in data driven solutions. Having worn a plethora of caps in his vast career he is not an individual of singular talents. Mukundans ability to handle multiple roles and his immense success makes him one of the finest leaders that this industry has seen.

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