Monthly Archives: May 2012

Don’t Waste Time When Setting Up Software Appointments!

Software Appoitments

Business intelligence software appeals only to people who are really high up. And if there’s one thing they all have in common, it’s how they value their time. With that in mind, it’s important to make sure that your marketing and B2B lead generation methods take up as little amount of that time as possible. In the following, you will find several methods that need to be tailored or avoided altogether because they take too much of that time otherwise:

 

  • Web pages – This is not necessarily a bad idea. A good web page that is well-optimized with keywords can attract those who are searching for a software solution. This in turn already establishes a need or else they wouldn’t be searching in the first place. However, the danger is having too much text and listing too many technical features that would surely eat up their time. In fact, you’re lucky they managed to spare a few minutes just to search. Make sure your website doesn’t bombard them with too many details and give them an option to learn more at their own pace.
  • Banner advertisements – Even in B2C businesses, the value of banner ads is still suspect because the conversion rate seems poor. On the other hand, there are plenty of really creative banners out there. The thing is though, you’re better off not trying this at all. The best banner ads are those that really appeal to people who spend a lot of time on the internet. These banners usually contain quirky little features, marketing stunts, and mini-games. A CEO hardly has the time to play around with these things.
  • Telemarketing – While you may have heard or read enough about it from people who say it’s fast, that depends on how fast your own people can use it. Professional telemarketers aren’t as easy to hire as you think. It takes years of experience to become one, learn the right mix of words, timing, and there’s also the additional investment in terms of equipment as well as information.
  • Email marketing – You can consider this the online version of telemarketing. But at the same time though, the rules stated regarding web pages also apply. Your subject line should not signal any red flags but at the same time, it has to signal the needs and interests of the reader.

 

The above methods are just the first step. You still have to keep the amount of time you spend while engaging the prospect. Chances are, they might not like talking too long even more than you. That’s where the appointments come in. Meanwhile, those same appointments must be carefully qualified before hand and scheduled at the appropriate date so that your prospect doesn’t waste too much time then either.

 

These people are very critical and very sharp when it comes to measuring the amount of time any activity would use. Just one look and they’ll either stick with you or start walking away. This scrutiny doesn’t end even after the appointment is set and the deal is made. They’ll be keeping an eye on the clock every step of the way so don’t do anything that will spend too much of that time!

Medical Leads – A Brief Recap On The Importance Of Data

Medical Leads

It’s common sense really. The more knowledge and information you have, there is less uncertainty, and with less uncertainty, you have lesser risks. Unfortunately, there will always be some people who treat risks a bit too much of a good thing.

 

They might have a different opinion though with regards to healthcare. In this field, risks can be hazardous to your health, literally. Hence, data is critical so that knowledge and information is used to minimize those risks. However, what about other types of data regarding the healthcare institutions themselves? Are these of any value to anyone within the healthcare industry?

They do you if you’re a supplier of medical software and technology.

 

See, the services and products that you provide all center around the task of handling information; information that needs to be recorded accurately and quickly. Hence, this is why you should never forget how important information is. The things your systems and tools deliver could save lives or end them. It all depends on how your data can minimize risks and improve the quality of services.

 

Another important role that data plays however is in the process of software lead generation. As you’re well aware, you’re not the type to hawk your product like an infomercial salesman would hawk a new appliance. You need to learn about not just how your software takes in patient data and other forms of clinical information, you also need to know about the institution that’s accommodating them.

 

Here are severals reasons why data is needed and the risks that they minimize:

 

  • Budget – Not all institutions can afford but it helps to at least know so both you and the prospect can find ways to make things affordable.
  • Schedule – Life in a hospital is always busy and never without emergency. Implementing the system needs to be strategically planned so as to not disrupt daily functions.
  • Needs – You can’t just approach every potential client with the same list of features. You have to find out specific needs and offer specific solutions.
  • Contact information – There are actually laws that inflict severe penalties upon those who dial the wrong number when contacting a hospital. Emergency numbers are just one of them.
  • Pesons-in-charge – It always pays to make sure to know who runs the place and is in charge making decisions that involve software implementation.

 

 

As stated before, you can see it’s not just patient information that you need to concern yourself with handling. It’s also information about the people taking care of them and knowing how your software can help speed up certain processes and cut down on the risks. Speaking of risks, the above types of information also minimizes the risk of making bad calls and pursuing dead leads. Such things are a precious waste of time after all. There is also the ever present issue of security. You’ll be handling very sensitive information so you’ll need to know what they’ll do to make sure your system keeps it safe.

 

Finally, what’s fortunate is that you don’t necessarily have to expend so much in gathering data on institutions as your software would have gather on patients. The former can simply be outsourced to lead generation companies with the information they deliver ready for you to act upon and close.

SCM Leads Should Inform You Of Expectations

Software Appointment Setting

Of the many qualities to look out for in a decent lead, knowledge of a company’s needs is definitely the most client-centered. However, there are some companies who list needs that are not only for themselves but are actually demanded by federal law. Thomas J. Trappler of Computerworld has this to say on the matter:

 

“If you move a function to the cloud that’s governed by legal or regulatory requirements and later your company falls out of compliance due to an error on the cloud vendor’s part, the law won’t go after the vendor – it will come after you. So you need to ensure that the cloud vendor can fully comply on your behalf.”

 

If someone out there thinks that this means providers are off the hook, they might want to think again. With trend of B2B software heading to the cloud, it’s more important than ever to constantly engage prospects and find out their expectations. These include compliance and Trappler’s article goes on to say that you might have contracts to fulfill.

 

Your software sales leads need to have this sort of information. If not, you might end up setting up your client for a nasty shock and even if they’ll be held responsible for whatever resulting mess, expect a bad referral at the very least. You’ll only be kidding yourself if you think you don’t need to know what legal responsibilities they want your services to live up to. It doesn’t matter what kind of communication medium you use or outsource (e.g. email, telemarketing services, direct mail, mobile marketing), the information you get out of it all should come with anything to do about compliance with the law.

CRM Leads – Defining The R

Cold Calling

CRM, as popularly understood, is short for Customer Relationship Management. However, with the rise of social media, there has been a growing emphasis on the R (Relationship). This is due to a common emphasis of social media marketers on the social relationship between business and customer.

 

Now the Harvard Business Review has published a blog that heavily contests these views.

 

In Three Myths about What Customers Want, Karen Freeman and co. list three misconceptions all centered around this view. In summary, the R in CRM is actually defined by the following things:

 

  • Then nature of the ‘relationship’. – Is it really a ‘relationship’ or is it just a buyer coming over to check something?
  • Shared values – It’s what you have in common and not how much time you spend talking.
  • More interaction isn’t always good – You’re more likely to commit the crime of information overload.

 

So what does this mean for CRM software firms and will this affect the way you engage your own market? Or if you’re outsourcing, does this change the standards you may have for how companies engage prospects for you? Well if there’s anything you want to take from the statistics, it’s the fact that you really need to define what is connecting you with them. How do they view your product? Does your interaction gear towards finding something in common or do you just yak? And speaking of yakking, is it at the very least helpful to the other end?

 

Remember, that your sales leads stand for information and that information should be more about what they divulge to you with what you only giving in turn when they ask for it.

B2B Leads From Social Media Need To Be Social

B2B Lead Generation

The recent wave of doubts regarding Facebook’s advertising platform isn’t actually new. A couple of months before talk of its IPO, Matthew Ingram of GigaOm wrote a blog about struggle of social media sites to please advertising prospects.

 

How is this connected to B2B leads? Isn’t there are world of difference between marketing B2B and B2C? While this may be so, plenty of B2B groups are already delving into social media as part of their overall online marketing plan. With regards to Facebook though, Ingram implies that the value of social media doesn’t lie in putting ads but actually making use of the social experience between company and customer:

 

“And if you don’t want to just inject ads into a stream or onto a Facebook page, then you might have to develop an actual conversation with your users in order to get your message across, and that can be a lot of work — so much so that some advertisers might not see the payoff as being worth it.”

 

But unlike advertisers, lead generators aren’t shy of putting that much work seeing as how the entire process is about finding out needs and establishing a relationship even before the sale. It’s one reason why most B2B companies use more direct means of communication (e.g. targeted email, telemarketing) in order to establish contact instead of the usual route of advertising deployed by B2C companies. Social media shouldn’t be different. In fact, the name of the medium itself should already tell you that much. If you want to make good use of it, you should be social!

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