recession proofing your smb

SaaS small businesses are facing challenging macroeconomic conditions once again. As the specter of a recession nears, small business owners must take steps to ensure they engage with their customers and future-proof their companies.

Achieving this goal is easier said than done. However, technology has improved to the point where SMB owners can leverage tools once reserved solely for enterprises. Here are 5 tools that will ensure your company is recession-proof.

Create interactive product demos

Customers have grown accustomed to experiencing free trials before buying a product. However, offering customers a free trial can be tricky. What if your product is experiencing rapid development? Or what if your product’s features are still under testing, leading to unstable demo environments?

Product demos are tough to execute because they rely on live data and potentially unstable environments. If your product breaks during a demo, you can rest assured you won’t receive a callback. The solution is to create a sandbox that highlights the best features of your product. The benefits of such a solution are immense.

Your sales team can rely on a product demo that never breaks or stresses existing infrastructure. The result is faster prospect uptake. They can even invite prospects in presentations to explore the platform and provide feedback. The result is faster development and customer-centricity.

Your marketing team can create an interactive product demo on your website, giving prospects the chance to explore features at their own pace. Since the demo lives separately from the existing infrastructure, updating the demo does not stress your resources.

You can boost customer experience by creating tutorials and explainer videos, giving customers an easy way to troubleshoot problems and have their questions answered. These demos are also handy when training new employees and customer service reps. The result is a secure and memorable customer experience that will keep prospects returning for more.

Walnut allows sales teams to quickly create personalized demos that convert. By allowing such customization, sales teams can tailor the experiences to each individual lead. This platform provides sales teams with all the tools they need, without the need for help from back-end teams. These demos can also be embedded onto business websites, and their click monitoring technology will track important statistics for sales team to monitor.

Invest in Account-Based Marketing (ABM)

If you’re operating in the B2B space, you’ve probably encountered lengthy sales cycles and complex marketing journeys. What if there was a way to boost marketing ROI by targeting the most profitable prospects for your product?

Account-based marketing or ABM is a great way to isolate your most profitable prospects and target them with highly insightful sales pitches. The problem is that getting to know your prospect is tough. You must mine a lot of data and figure out how to target a prospect.

Technology has simplified ABM campaign execution significantly. Most modern platforms help you leverage ML and AI algorithms to spot trends in customer behavior. They help you use existing customer data to identify similar prospects who are a great fit for your product, for instance.

You must also take website visitor data into account, such as demographic data, job roles, and industry. Integrate this information with your ABM platform to present prospects with a personalized landing page, boosting engagement and generating more sales.

A good ABM platform also offers you a database of key contacts within your industry. Your sales team will spend less time chasing the wrong accounts. Your marketing team can run highly profitable cross-channel campaigns that target your ideal customers. Make sure your reports tie marketing spend to business goals. This way, you can justify spending and measure ROI.

RollWorks is simplifying B2B ABM campaigns by aligning sales and marketing efforts. The platform uses ML algorithms to identify prospect trends that your sales and marketing team can quickly leverage to create memorable campaigns.

Simplify product development

Product owners face significant challenges when managing small teams. Not only are team members working on several tasks at once, but product owners themselves have to jump in and wear different hats. Small business product owners need all the help they can get, and automating product roadmaps and feedback is the best way to reduce their workload.

One of the issues is creating views across different work philosophies. For instance, a Kanban board looks different from a Scrum sprint schedule. Choose a platform that helps you switch between these views easily.

Make sure you gather feedback from your developers regarding product development paths. This will align the team towards a common goal. The most important factor when deciding development goals is customer needs. Gather data regarding customer usage and the issues they’re facing with your product.

Communicate these goals to your team and prioritize solving those problems. Use tree maps to organize these goals.

Chisel simplifies these tasks thanks to a highly-intuitive platform that gives product owners all the information they need.  Your product owners can quickly incorporate market feedback or trends by creating a goal and connecting upcoming features to address the need. Release management is also simple with Chisel, removing much of the manual work product owners experience during those times.

Aim for faster sales outreach

Sales outreach is essential to building a robust business. If you collect data about your customers, then you must leverage that knowledge to connect with them better. Sales outreach platforms these days go beyond hosting huge databases of contacts. Choose a platform that helps you align sales with marketing.

For instance, you must have the ability to run demand-gen campaigns from the platform and tie all contact information together seamlessly. A good sales outreach platform must also integrate seamlessly with your CRM, to give an end-to-end picture of prospects.

Integrating customizable web forms that gather different information depending on your prospects is also a good idea. Link these datasets to your outreach platform and CRM to give you a holistic view of your prospects and customers. As you gather more data, you’ll have the chance to build customer loyalty that will help your business during tough times.

ZoomInfo is a well-known tool that many B2B companies have regularly used. It boasts one of the most comprehensive contact databases out there. However, the platform boasts more functionality beyond a contact database. Integrating ZoomInfo with your CRM is seamless, giving you a platform that automates most of the tedious work associated with sales and marketing outreach.

You can import interactions into Salesforce to keep track of your pipeline, helping you create relevant conversations with prospects and boost sales.

Capture real-time chat insights

Chatbots are a great way of boosting interactions with your prospects and customers. Thanks to the degree of customization most solutions offer, you can create memorable journeys and automate customer interaction. The result is less stress on your customer service teams, leading to more time spent solving high-priority customer queries.

You can also close sales faster, thanks to automating most workflows. Create multi-level workflows with your sales reps and reduce their workload seamlessly. Most chatbots come equipped with inbuilt analytics and data tracking to give you insights into prospect needs. You can integrate these insights into customer service workflows to quickly address customer needs.

ProProfs‘ chatbot solution offers your business a means of interacting with existing customers and gathering highly-relevant prospect data.

Many solutions for a recession

SaaS SMBs face challenging times ahead. However, technology is improving by leaps and bounds, giving you many solutions to develop an engaged customer base and build your pipeline.

Image: Depositphotos

This article, “5 Tips for Recession-Proofing Your Sales Process” was first published on Small Business Trends

Source: Small Business Trends

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