Written by Stephen Moegling
One of the biggest challenges we see with our health care clients engaged in B2B sales opportunities is breaking into new markets or categories: for example, entering a new territory or launching products and services in new business categories.
There are several common reasons why breaking into new markets and categories is challenging, like:
- No (or limited) brand recognition
- Lack of (or limited) street credibility—the coveted “like and trust” factor
- Lack of (or limited) real-world experience to know which trade shows and associations to participate in
- “Cold” leads and prospects that take time to “warm up” for sales opportunities
We also know the challenge of cracking new categories and markets when physician referrals are important to growing the business. Having worked with physicians for over 40 years, we know building strong referral relationships with physicians is key to many health care business strategies.
We developed our Powering the Pipeline platform to give our clients the marketing strategy, technology, and the infrastructure to effectively “warm up” B2B sales and referral opportunities.
In this post, I’ll share several best practices that we leverage to help our clients to:
- Enter new markets and categories successfully
- Grow share of the market
- Build strong referral patterns with providers
Virtual “Street Teams”
To promote an upcoming concert or the launch of a new album, the music industry employs people to canvas cities with posters promoting the event—aka, “Street Teams.”
We do something similar for clients who seek to enter new markets or categories. At Hailey Sault, we disperse digital marketing campaigns that canvas the sites and media platforms where our clients’ audiences spend the most time, both personally and professionally. This virtual street team strategy enables our clients to have a profound presence during key periods of entering new markets, product and service releases and other times when our clients want to be top-of-mind with prospects. We also supplement our clients’ organic search strategies with paid search efforts, helping to rank higher for keyword terms that prospective clients are using to find solutions.
Thanks to digital media’s ability to micro-target audiences and Hailey Sault’s proprietary strategies, we magnify our clients’ footprint and sphere of reach, helping them overshadow often bigger, more established competitor brands.
Sales Insights Tracking
Though much has changed in business since the rise of digital marketing during the past decade, one thing hasn’t changed: business is still done person to person. Our Powering the Pipeline platform helps our clients to connect with key prospects so that sales teams can do what they do best: engage prospects in meaningful conversations that lead to meaningful business relationships.
That’s why our marketing platform is designed to give sales teams real-time information on how key prospects are engaging with our clients’ content and digital marketing efforts. When we integrate with our clients’ CRM platforms, we are able to provide our clients with lead scores that indicate overall engagement and interest with the products and offers. This real-time information is helpful to sales teams who want to know when a prospect is highly engaged with marketing efforts. These insights also allow us to identify what new sales and marketing tools to create that provide the sales teams with more tools to use in nurturing sales opportunities.
Messaging for the 5.4
According to the game-changing book on modern B2B sales, The Challenger Customer, there are 5.4 stakeholders involved in every B2B buying decision. That’s why sales teams today need materials and resources to appeal to the 4.4 OTHER stakeholders beyond the original point of contact. Having developed sales and communications resources for physician referral marketing and communications for two decades, we see evidence that physicians also have key stakeholders involved in deciding referral patterns along with purchasing business products and services.
As part of our Powering the Pipeline platform, we develop sales and marketing materials that appeal to all decision makers involved in the buying decision. Though sales teams would always prefer to be in the boardroom when stakeholders meet, they can’t always be there. So the sales and marketing tools must be advocates for the organization and its offerings. And to get to a yes, the tools must appeal to the unique perspectives, biases and wants of all stakeholders.
Our approach to marketing B2B health brands is no different than our approach to marketing B2C health brands like leading hospitals and health systems—with one exception.
In the B2C sale, we help our clients tell their story in unique and engaging ways by identifying the key audience personas, drivers of brand distinction and hand-selected media channels that our audiences spend time and engage with. The audience engages with our campaigns and engages the brand directly. In the case of our work with hospitals, this often means scheduling an appointment with a physician.
But the B2B marketing strategies we create help to guide our clients’ prospective clients to a different call-to-action: an invitation to a sales opportunity. We see our work with our Powering the Pipeline platform as a strategy for warming up prospects to become aware and engaged with our clients’ products and services. We then share the data and insights with sales teams so they can do what they do so well: ask for a conversation and close the sale.