Inbound Marketing + Sales Blog

October 16, 2014

The Truth Behind Being an Inbound Sales Professional

Written by: Korey MacPherson  |  Share:

Sales_Professional_Truth_blog_(3)So you want the truth about being an Inbound Sales Professional?

Truth is, you might think we're a little creepy.

Probably not what you expected to hear, but hey, you wanted the truth.

Here’s the thing: We’re not personally creepy, actually we’re generally quite nice, but the job we’re tasked to do can seem a little out of the ordinary. Much of it entails digging around the profiles of our prospects in the pipeline. But not to worry, all of the information we gather is through our inbound marketing efforts and actually helps us have more informed and relevant conversations. It's just like we're taking a little extra time up front to learn more about you so that we can be sure the solution we share will work for your business.

The real truth lies in the work we do on a day-to-day basis. Whether it’s tracking leads, writing proposals, reading articles & blog posts, or crunching numbers and notes, there is always planning to do and information to retain.

Massive Information Retention

With Inbound Sales, there is tons of information to remember. Thankfully, due to inbound marketing, your prospects are more educated than ever before. To put it into perspective, most B2B buyers complete 90% of the buying process before they contact a potential supplier.

It's essential for you to understand just how educated your prospects really are before you get them on the phone. This means, you need to pay attention to their digital body language on your website.   

What is digital body language you ask?

  • The pages they have viewed
  • The blog posts they have read
  • The content they have downloaded
  • The emails they have opened
  • The social messages they have engaged with

Essentially, it's all the information that you can gather about how they have interacted with your company.

These bits of information give you a basic understanding of the pain-points they are experiencing and make you that much more prepared for a phone conversation (it could be your only shot at a deal). If you understand your audience, recognize their level of education and experience with your business & content, you’ll save yourself a lifetime of headaches - or at least that week’s.

Trust me, nobody wants to be lectured on matters in which they are already knowledgeable. Know your buyer personas!

Introducing Sidekick

Now, as much as I’d like to take all the credit for keeping my eyes on hundreds of leads, I can’t. The single most effective way to pay attention to how prospects are interacting with your company is with HubSpot’s Sidekick.

Sidekick is Hubspot’s sales acceleration solution. You may have heard of Signals - well, Sidekick is a rebrand and relaunch of the incredible tool. It is a browser extension that makes prospecting, connecting and engaging with potential leads easy and intuitive.

Here’s a breakdown of how it works:

  • Receive real-time notifications of when, where and how prospects are engaging with you by opening or clicking your emails or visiting your website
  • Obtain company insights by navigating to a company’s website to immediately see company size, industry, key employees and even mail
  • Get to know your Contacts instantly by getting instant information on those in your contact database. This includes: title, company, social media accounts and recent social media activity.

This way you can build and maintain powerful relationships with your prospects.

Preparation Required

Anytime you’re engaged in a conversation with a prospect, it’s essential to have a good idea of how much they know about your company. With that, your company is most likely producing a great deal of content at the disposal of your buyer personas. They are reading your most recent blog posts, downloading eBooks and whitepapers, utilizing toolkits and templates, attending your webinars and possibly receiving emails.  

At any point in conversation they could bring up questions and comments in relation to a piece of content. As an Inbound Sales professional, you need to stay up-to-date with your company’s available content and marketing efforts.

Picture this: You’re in the middle of a conversation that is going extremely well with a prospect in your company’s ‘sweet spot.’ They suddenly ask a question pertaining to a piece of content they read the other day. It’s a new premium content offer on email marketing your team published in conjunction with a blog post. You have NO idea how to answer the question. Just like that, the call is over.

Avoid this situation and others alike by checking your prospect’s profile in HubSpot. By doing this, you can see what content they’ve engaged with and in turn, you know exactly what content offer they’re referencing when you speak with them. Not only that, you can educate yourself by reading those content offers (or maybe your marketing team is awesome and creates cheat sheets for each offer) and enter the conversation prepared to answer any questions.

Staying on top of the current available content can go a long way in the sales process and proving your credibility.

Frankly, it’s Fun

I don’t know anybody who enjoys cold calls. 

Luckily for me, as an Inbound Sales Professional, cold calls are something I am rarely pressed to do. In reality, cold calls are dying in relevancy and are plain no fun to carry out.

On the other hand, inbound sales is quite fun! It’s a bit like being a detective and psychic rolled into one. You have to dig up information on a prospect and company but discreetly and seamlessly while paying attention to their every move so you can anticipate conversation between you two.

Having the capability to see what your prospects are reading and downloading before you ever get them on the phone is a huge advantage. In that moment, you already have a potential blueprint for the solution they need and the questions they may ask. Did I mention your role also includes engineer (of solutions)?

Jealous yet?

The Truth Revealed

There you have it, the truth about being an Inbound Sales Professional. We have a lot of hats to wear but taking charge of the sales process is our favorite. With the abundance of information we have on prospects, taking control of the process can be fun and rewarding.

Although our consumers are more educated than ever, for the Inbound Sales Professional, it all comes down to being prepared. If you perform due diligence for a prospects – research, analyze and understand their education and pain-points  - you will always be ready to take control of the sale.


Topics: Inbound Sales, Sales Conversion

About The Author

Korey is a former New Breeder

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