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Enterprise businesses, it’s time to leverage sales engagement to unlock revenue

By: Andrew Hamburger, Strategic Account Executive


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Big growth targets are driving enterprise businesses back down to small and midsize businesses (SMBs), where there are hundreds of millions of dollars in incremental revenue available for the taking.

According to small business statistics from the SBA, small businesses comprise 99.9% of US businesses. That’s a massive TAM — 32.5 million to be exact. 

Even more interesting is that most of those small businesses, 81%, have no employees, making them exclusively one-person shops. These 25.7 million people are wearing all the hats and are hard to get a hold of. Yet, they likely need a solution like yours in order for their companies to thrive. 

So how do you sell to someone who literally is their business? 

And how do you do that in a cost effective way? You can’t hire a thousand new sellers to call into accounts with low revenue potential, but not calling into them leaves that money on the table.

What do SMB buyers want from you?

This creates a great testing ground for a revenue orchestration platform like Salesloft, where you can use a blend of automation and personalization to drive awareness, flag interested leads, and prescribe the right seller intervention or e-commerce purchase.

In fact, timely, targeted seller engagements and frictionless buying experiences are becoming the expectation for buyers. 

Take McKinsey Omnichannel Sales data for example:

  • 2/3 of buyers prefer remote human interactions or digital self-service
  • Only 20-30% of B2B buyers want to interact with reps in person
  • Over 90% of B2B decision makers think remote/self-serve models are here to stay
  • 3 in 4 of those decision makers (existing customers and prospects) believe the new model is as effective or more so than previous models
  • 99% of B2B buyers say they will make a purchase in an end-to-end self-serve model (where they're willing to spend $50k+ online)

9 effective ways to unlock revenue from SMB customers

It’s clear the market is changing. Be ready to change with it. With the right resources and infrastructure to support more SMBs in your customer base, sales engagement can help your enterprise business unlock your next $100 million in revenue growth — this year.

Here are some effective strategies to start engaging the SMB audience:

1. Segment your SMB customers 

By industry. By potential value. By geography. However you segment, the key is to be able to isolate your SMB customers so you can take them on an automated, self-serve journey relevant to their needs.

2. Find your omnichannel cadence

Our data shows that customers require 10-14 steps across 3-5 channels. This is especially true given the fact many SMBs are businesses-of-one, so it can be difficult to reach the sole decision maker. Phone and email are not enough. You need to be on SMS, video, social media, and other channels, too. Technology like Salesloft can easily help you build out the right communication cadences.

3. Use one-to-many communication

You can send customers through a journey that comes from your sales reps, just use automation so your reps can reach a lot more SMB customers. Your team’s messaging should include relevant hypotheses, value props, and offers. Add dynamic tags to increase personalization, and keep subject lines and email copy short. This shouldn’t feel like marketing automation, it should feel like a personal touch. But, successful sales engagement captures attention. So keep written messages within 100 words or less.

4. Be available

Make it easy for potential customers to reach you, whether that’s replying to email, driving them to an e-commerce site, or including a dynamic calendar link that allows them to book a meeting.

5. Send the almighty bump email!

This email happens midway through the cadence. Try sending them in thread automated replies with a tried and true message like “any thoughts on my previous note?” or “any merit in this idea?” The bump pays off.

For one Fortune 50 Enterprise, they saw 1,100% increase in replies in the bump email compared to the initial offer email.

6. Follow customer behaviors

Actions speak louder than words, and that goes for your SMB customers, too. Even if they haven’t told you that they’re interested, they will often show you Score customer interactions by intent such as email open rates, click through rates, and website visits. Salesloft lets you set a scoring threshold for hot leads, so once an SMB lead shows the right intent score, you can automatically put those leads in a cadence for a sales rep to call.

7. Extend the reach of your current reps

In a recent dataset we conducted, Salesloft allowed 1,640% more unique customers to be reached in the same time frame with the same number of sellers. Hot leads were identified and received extra treatment, which led to even higher conversion. And if formulas are more your thing, think of it like this: Increased Leverage + Hot Lead Focus = More Opportunities with Less Manpower

8. Stay relevant to the SMB audience

Create meaningful content for your SMB audience. Nurturing closed, lost, or uninterested leads via a monthly piece of automated thought leadership will continue to keep you top of mind when the timing is right.

9. Review and analyze the data

Go through the remote human and self-serve messaging your team developed and learned what worked, which channels were most effective, and why. Also ask yourself how long an ideal SMB journey is for your enterprise business, and see if you can take steps to reach it.

Grab the lion’s share before your competitors do

There are a lot of small businesses out there waiting to be engaged. So engage them! Tap into 32 million potential customers with omnichannel self-serve and automation. 

Your buyers already want and expect to learn about your enterprise business without directly talking to a rep at first. Use this new model to your advantage and allow these smaller leads to warm up at their own pace. 

It might take some getting used to, but once you’ve found what works to engage small businesses, the potential growth is exponential — and you can take your SMB engagement tactics up market, too.

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