Why Background Research is Important in Sales

Conducting background research will make an enormous difference in your sales success.  It’s a no-brainer that researching your client will be beneficial in fostering a more meaningful, relevant conversation. Each prospect will have unique problems, so you need to take the time to gather information before providing a more tailored solution. In saying that, here’s a brief overview of why background research is crucial for sales. 

  1. Get Deeper Business Insights & Opportunities 

Before you chase up a prospect, background research into the client will help you navigate the conversation much more effectively. In doing so, you can further develop rapport and familiarity with your client’s desires, leading to a more enriched professional relationship. If you can truly understand the prospect, then you can identify how your solutions can help achieve its vision or resolve its key problems, and hence, capture more sales opportunities. This could include forming a potential business partnership, expanding into a new market segment, and offering profitable upsells or cross-selling product / service bundles. The crucial information gleaned before reaching out will turn you from a salesperson to a consultant who is already involved in the problem-solving process. 

  1. Lead Generation – Target Your Desired Audience 

When conducting your background check, it’s extremely important that you not only reach out to the right company, but also the right person. This will really depend on the nature of the client and your objectives. For example, if you’re a company which sells CRM software, then you would most likely target prospects who are involved with marketing, rather than the R&D department. If you don’t properly research your ideal, most qualified prospect, then there will either be no connection during your sales call, or the sales process would take much longer. 

Some basic information you should gauge includes: company size, industry, number of employees, product or service offerings, typical sale volume, industry and market size. You can also visit the company website (e.g. its “About” and “Contact Us” pages) and note down its mission, brand values and vision. Additionally, LinkedIn will be your best friend – find out the employees involved in your company of interest, such as recent job changes, role / title, education and how long they’ve worked there. By building your persona, you can properly prepare your sales pitch if you were to meet them face to face. 

  1. Establish Stronger Objectives 

Background research is imperative for helping you to set clear objectives before your sales pitch. This detailed research and knowledge of your prospect will be the bedrock for why you’re even contacting them in the first place. You should first pinpoint where exactly your prospect lies in the sales funnel, and determine how you can ease them into the next stage. This gradual transition over the sales cycle will ensure that you move one step closer to closing the deal while also maintaining a strong customer relationship. It will also be helpful to determine more specific long-term metrics for success, such as projected sales volume. To create stronger objectives, you should formulate goals based on the customer’s degree of commitment that moves the sales cycle forward. Some key examples include: a subsequent meeting with the client, an appointment with a more senior executive or upper management, an opportunity to present your solution to the board of directors (sales pitch), or encourage the client to implement a demo / trial of your proposed solution. 

  1. Reduce Business Risk 

The sales process is constantly filled with many risks and challenges, particularly when contacting a prospect. By doing your background research before this dreaded sales pitch or call, you’ll develop a stronger understanding of your client, which will help you provide more relevant and useful solutions that are tailored to the client’s problems. Even noticing the smaller details of your clients’ personal life or any past shared experiences with your warmer leads will help you create instant conversation starters during the call. This “small talk” helps to humanise yourself and establish greater rapport with the prospect. It also allows you to anticipate any difficult questions or objections raised by the prospect, and adapt accordingly. That way, you’ll seem much more professional and organised, which makes a good impression. 

Background research also lowers risks by ensuring that your product or service actually fulfils the needs of your targeted clients. In a way, your sales contacts and pitches allow you to test the feasibility and appeal of your solutions / offerings. Drawn from background research into the most qualified leads for sales, you can choose to contact a smaller subset or your audience to see if the product meets their desires or fills a gaping demand in the market.  Not only that, you can determine if your actual messages (especially via LinkedIn), sales calls or any other communication mechanism is actually effective in reaching your audience. This all can be achieved by sales automation software. Even if your customer doesn’t reply, you can further research why there’s a lack of customer engagement (or even trace it back to the flaws of the product offering itself), and use this evaluation to improve your sales technique or refine the product quality.

  1. Gain Competitive Advantage 

There’s nothing more important than persuading your customer that you are the right person to solve their concerns and meet their intrinsic needs. However, the marketplace will always be saturated with other competitors, so you need to thoroughly research how you can beat them and provide the most tailored, relevant solutions to your targeted client. This will distinguish yourself from any potential rivals who may steal away your customer or impede the sales process, allowing you to gain a competitive advantage. 

To outsell your competitors, you need to firstly target any dissatisfied customers and ask them about their frustrations with your competitor’s products. Even researching online product / service or company reviews can help you improve your own offerings, and market them effectively to an audience who is ready to switch brands or move onto another sales rep. Background research will also help you find a frequently overlooked or neglected customer segment. During this information gathering, you might discover some interesting pain points, motivations or desires that aren’t addressed in your competitor’s offerings. Try mentioning this to your prospect and see if any sales opportunities arise.  

Capture Higher Sales with Leado 

Before the nerve-wracking sales call, you’ll need to first target the most qualified prospects through background research. Sales automation and lead generation is incredibly crucial for many businesses to acquire more sales opportunities. With our advanced cloud-based software, Leado, you can add immense value to your pipeline and acquire new customers outside of your network within days. 

Interested? Get in touch with OMDIGI Group now and we’ll work together with your business to maximise results with our versatile catalogue of digital marketing services!