Artificial Intelligence is B2B Sales Hack
You: Gather data, start analyzing and procure more B2B sales qualified leads.
You: I have gathered all information but everything needs to be pieced together.
Me: Let AI handle it!
In recent years, B2B sales and marketing teams are turning to artificial intelligence (AI) to improve the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and accelerate business growth.
Research shows that 80% of B2B sales and marketing executives believe that AI will revolutionize the field in the next five years. However, only 10% report using AI applications today.
Yes, that’s right! There is a HUGE gap and an equivalently huge opportunity there.
AI’s power to predict customer behavior, automate buyer’s journey and much more (discussed below) is helping B2B marketers make smart decisions and improve quality leads.
It wouldn’t be wrong to say that improved lead generation is the focus of AI revolutionizing marketing today.
Let’s discuss how AI can boost B2B sales, lead generation and take marketing campaigns to the next level.
I. Predictive modeling for customers
It is true that predictive modeling has been the hallmark of bigger companies like eBay and Amazon, but it is increasingly becoming accessible to small businesses as well.
But, what is predictive modeling or analysis?
As the name suggests, predictive modeling and analysis use data mining, artificial intelligence and machine learning to analyze information and predict outcomes.
So, how does it help you?
In varied ways. To start with –
First, this information can supplement customer segmentation based on varied variables like customer behavior.
Second, it helps in recommending the right product/service to the customer thereby increasing B2B sales
Thirdly, it helps in recommending ads based on past customer behavior and other variables that affect decision making. Smart marketers have also started utilizing this business intelligence for upsells, cross-sells and next sells.
Fourth, AI enabled technology behind predictive analysis also helps qualify and prospect quality leads.
Besides this, you can also
- take advantage of data visualization that can help you bring right product/services to the market.
- Target the right customer with right content
- Personalize the entire buyer’s journey. Traditionally B2B marketers looked at job title, industry, location and such to target prospects. But, with AI, you can go beyond it and know the preferences and behavior of the lead. This information can be used to personalize the entire buyer journey and we all know that personalization has a higher conversion rate. Isn’t it?
The predictive analysis provides you with the abundance of business intelligence which can be used in several ways to prospect, qualify leads and increase B2B sales.
II. Enhance lead scoring
As a B2B sales rep or a marketer, you understand the importance of having a clear lead scoring model. With AI (as we discussed above), you have the abundance of relevant data on customer’s past behavior and existing leads/prospects.
According to Demand Gen Report, machine learning algorithms can harness that information to predict the best leads and most important accounts. These insights can help marketers and sales representatives prioritize the most promising accounts and identify hot prospects not yet in the pipeline. Predictive lead scoring helps sales reps hit their numbers and close more deals, particularly for teams that focus on account-based marketing. And, when hot leads are mapped to the right accounts in their CRM, both marketing and sales win.
Let’s take a simple example to understand how this works. You are in the manufacturing sector and have a variety of customer profiles. It can be difficult to identify decision makers and target the right accounts in the lead information. AI enabled lead scoring helps you determine which job title has been the decision maker (or other prominent variables) in a particular industry and makes it easier for you to score leads accordingly.
III. AI can help in increasing effectiveness of each campaign
B2B marketers have relied on analytics (sometimes vanity analytics) and take educated “guesses” for future campaigns.
This is history with AI.
AI allows you to draw insights rapidly from the data (whether or not centralized) and make predictions for the future. Such insights can help you decide which strategy, segmentation and campaign to implement next time to increase the conversion rate for B2B sales.
It can also help you boost the effectiveness of present campaigns by highlighting what is working (or not working, for example, any underperforming content) which can help you make decisions on better alternatives.
IV. Freed up the time to focus on sales
With AI, you can automate parts of sales team work. Yes, we are talking about a sales assistant. It does not mean replacing human resources but freeing up their time from administrative tasks.
AI sales assistant is capable of reaching out to initiate a personal conversation and analyze interest. According to digitalera, the sales assistant engages leads to start a real conversation, a task that can be done at scale only with an intelligent machine. The AI emails are context-sensitive, generated in real time and individualized from the start, so they look and sound like they are coming from a real person, yet they are continually optimized to generate a response.
According to a Harvard Business Review, Epson implemented an AI sales assistant recently and their lead response rate increased by 240%.
AI also assist sales associates with administrative tasks like paperwork, initial contact searching, scheduling etc. Did you know that an employee spends 40% of the working time doing admin tasks?
With help of such AI enabled products/services, the sales team can spend time doing what they are best at – qualify prospects and sell. They need not be bogged down with rigorously searching customer information, dialing phone numbers or sending emails.
Ultimately, AI will give you the maximum possible ROI at minimum costs if utilized correctly.
Remember, only 10% marketers have adopted AI? B2B marketers hesitate to adopt AI solutions citing challenges to integrate with present technologies and understanding results.
But, we are sure you now understand that investing in AI is worth the effort!