538: Creating a Demand Generation Strategy for a Skeptical Buyer w/ Bethany Walsh

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode we talk to Bethany Walsh, VP Marketing at Abacus.

Wouldn't it be nice to have several thought leaders in your industry know and Love Your brand? Start a podcast, invite your industries thought leaders to be guests on your show and start reaping the benefits of having a network full of industry influencers? Learn more at sweet fish Mediacom. You're listening to the be tob growth show, a podcast dedicated to helping be to be executives achieve explosive growth. What you're looking for techniques and strategies or tools and resources? You've come to the right place. I'm Jonathan Green and I'm James Carberry. Let's get into the show. Welcome back to the BB growth show. We are here today with Bethany Walsh. She's the VP of marketing at Avacus. Bethany, how you doing today? Great, great, thanks, Janks, for having me. I'm excited to chat with you today, Bethany. We're going to be talking about creating a demand generation strategy for a skeptical buyer. This is...

...definitely a topic that we have not covered before, so I really appreciate the granularity as you were, you know, thinking through the the topic that we should cover. I think this is going to be super valuable. But before we get into that, you've got kind of a three part approach for creating this demandgin strategy. Before we get to that, tell us a little bit about Avacus and what you and your team are up to over there. Yeah, so avacast is really the first real time expense reporting platform. So basically what that means is we remove the traditional expense report from the process of submitting expenses and instead the platform relies on data points and integrations to help employes submit expenses as they occur and then a sort of automatically sorts and organizes them into what we call live reports, which makes it really easy for finance teams to review and approve them. So we're really you know, my team is focused on selling into the finance department at, you know, midsize companies, and so this is really a topic that is something we've had to think long and...

...hard about and really sort of try to find different ways to, you know, build relationships with this buyer. Know that that makes perfect sense. I think finance and it I would imagine, are probably some of the most skeptical buyers just by the nature of, you know, the type of products are needing to buy. In the impact that they know this great significance that those products have on the organization as a whole from a security standpoint. Obviously, finance is huge. So to dive right in, Bethany understanding? Now a little bit of context as to why this this is something that you're particularly skilled in. You guys have done a lot of thinking around this idea. Let's start by talking about what do you think makes the buyer skeptical? Yeah, I mean it's so the first thing I would say is skeptical isn't necessarily bad, right. You know, like you said, it finance, legal departments, you know these teams. They carry a lot of responsibility and sort of...

...the you know, the way of the business on their shoulders, and so their job is to be really diligent. You know, if they're going to buy a piece of software or, you know, some sort of service that goes into their process and it's going to, you know, touch these really important pieces of data, they want to make sure that it's stable, that it's going to be around for a while, and so they're going to you know, they're really going to do their homework and by that nature, in order to be really biased and do your diligence. You have to you have to be a little skeptical and you have to ask a lot of questions, you know. So I think that they can't afford to sort of miss step or fail because they have these big consequences that would come out of that. So I think the first thing you know, as a marketer, to realize is, you know, just because they're skeptical, it doesn't it doesn't mean that it's it's bad or, you know, hurtful to the buying process.

I think it it just means that you're really going to want to help them do their homework and sort of take a different approach with them, and I like that idea of kind of reframing the way that we look at someone who's skeptical. You know, your buyers really diligent and so looking at it from the perspective of okay, if you have a very diligent buyer, than you have lots of opportunities to you, you know, provide content context to them that can allow them to do that due diligence. So I love the way you've thought about it. There this this next point that we're going to talk about. Bethany, you said they won't buy from you if they don't trust you. This is something that obviously we've talked about a lot on the show, the importance of trust, but talk to us, talk to us a little bit about this. Yeah, so, I mean I think that just in general buyers today, there's so many options that trust is becoming more important in the buying process as a whole. But I think, especially for a...

...skeptical buyer, you know, that trust is sort of the foundation of the buying process to an extent that is a little bit deeper, you know, and I think that for them it's really they want that proof and they need that proof and so, as you know, as a marketer, it's something that you have to instill across the whole organization because you have to be genuine and you have to do what you're what you say you're going to do. And so if you say that your product can do something, you know they'll see through the exaggerations and when they do their homework and they do their digging, you know they'll find out whether or not you know you're going to be able to follow through. But the great thing is is that once they trust you, they're going to stick with you. Because, you know, it's this isn't a buyer that wants to go and shop around a lot. You know, their risk adverse. They don't want to, you know, keep...

...trying things out. They want to find something that works and they want to stick with it. So if they trust you enough to buy from you, they're really going to stick with you and they want to build that relationship. So I think about it, as you know, really as an opportunity. I think that, you know, building that sort of relationship can lead to even, you know, more sort of benefits down the road in terms of them being there for you when you need to help build trust with another prospect, you know, in terms of referrals or reference calls or anything like that. But it is it is really important. You know, they're not going to they're not going to step lightly into into this kind of you know, buying software or, you know, buying your service or whatever it is. So that and they want to make sure that they're not going to have to do sort of a rip and replace. They don't want to, you know, install something and then have it not worked out. So so trust is...

...pretty much the key in the foundation to the whole process being a success. So, with that being said, kind of laying the groundwork of understanding that that trust is absolutely essential, an essential part of this equation. Well, I'd love to close on talking about some practical tactics that, you know, the folks listening to this can start to employ to to build that trust. Yeah, I mean, you know, tactics are really hard and they're really you know, it's it varies for industry and you know exactly what you're selling and things like that. But you know, there's some things that you're going to know about your skeptical buyer right like they're going to want to do their homework, and so the first place that that always starts today is, you know, you go to your search engine and you type in, you know, what is it that you're looking for? Well, these buyers oftentimes have...

...really specific questions. So focusing on those long tail keywords, the more specific you can get in the closer to answering that exact question you can get, the more sort of points you're going to earn with them, because they're really going to think that you understand their situation and that you understand the problems that they're trying to to solve. And so they're not going to go into this with with someone that they think doesn't understand or speak their language. So, you know, focusing it, really knowing what those long tail keywords are, you know what exactly people are are searching for, is super important and it's definitely an investment to make. Yeah, and would that sort of comes that trust aspect again and being genuine. You know, you can't just put up url with the exact phrase in it and then put something else on the page, like you really need to dive into that specific problem on the page and, you know, show them that you can offer a solution to that.

I think the other thing that, you know, we've started to focus on is third party validation, so reviews and APP listings and, you know, getting your current customers to, you know, publicly participate in that validation is really important. You know, don't be afraid of asking for reviews and if you're if you're following through and you're, you know, doing what you said you were going to do, it shouldn't be hard to ask for reviews and you know, it shouldn't be something that you worry about. And then the other thing that you know is really great for validation is you know, finding other companies or, you know, solutions that you can partner with that are brands that they already trust. What are these partnerships look like? Bethany that ones? That one's super interesting to me. Yeah, so, you know, our software is sort of a piece of the accounting stack, and so when we came into the market, when we integrated with different accounting platforms,...

...you know, net suite intact, we took advantage of those partnerships and really, you know, aligned ourselves with their customer base and, you know, go going to those events and and being a good partner with them. Sort of shows their audience that, you know, we have longevity, that we are a legitimate company and that, you know, we take this seriously, and so that was really what helped us build, start to build a relationship with that with their customer base. So taking advantage of those sort of CO branding, you know, marketing opportunities is super, super important. You know, another way to do that is through content, you know, doing webinars or ebooks with existing, you know, vendors that they already trust is a great way to start to get them, to get them exposure to your point...

...of view. Yeah, I did that I've done that a couple times so far this year with two different virtual summits that we've planned where we've had companies that were much larger than US partner with us to put on the event. And obviously we're we're seeing as a partner with these large brands, putting putting out this piece of content and in the form of a virtual summit, and so I think your spot on that we got to absorb the trust that our buyers have in these other companies because we're putting on an event with them. So that that makes total sense. Another another thing that you had mentioned as we were talking through this offline, you mentioned the importance of segmentation. Can you talk to us a little bit about that and why that's really important to hone in on here? Yeah, absolutely. You know, finance teams in particular, we found very so much and they're sort of processes very so much,...

...and so you know, there's some commonalities and some trends that you can find, whether it's by segmenting by vertical, by company size, you know, by sort of dollars that they've raised. There's a lot of different ways to sort of look at your audience, but figuring out what makes their situation different from someone else's really helps you have a better conversation with them. You know, it kind of goes back to those long tail key words. You know, somebody from, you know, Twenty Person Tech Company in the finance team is probably trying to solve a different problem than somebody from a five hundred person consultant agency, you know. So understanding those different use cases is is really also going to help you build that trust because you know you know what you're talking about and you've been through that with other customers. That makes a big difference. I really appreciate you sharing that piece, Bethany this, this...

...entire strategy, the the method that you've used to create this to mandarin strategy, particularly for someone with the skeptical buyer, I think is super, super helpful as definitely, like I said earlier, not something we've talked about on the show before. So I really appreciate you sharing this. If there's somebody listening that wants to stay connected with you, maybe they want to dig deeper on this idea. Maybe there they have very skeptical buyers and want to jam with you on some ideas. What's the best way for them to stay in contact with you and also how can they learn more about abacus? Yeah, definitely. So you can check us out at abacuscom or on twitter at Abacus. Pretty simple there. You can always get in touch with me through email. It's just Bethany at abacustcom and my twitter handle is be a barker. So definitely reach out. Let me know if you have questions, and I'd also love to hear you know other people's methods as well. So awesome, Bethany. Will thank you so much for your time today. This has been fantastic, so I really appreciate it. Thank you. To ensure that you...

...never miss an episode of the B Tob Growth Show, subscribe to the show and Itunes or your favorite podcast player. This guarantees that every episode will get delivered directly to your device. If you or someone you know would be an incredible guest for the B tob growth show, email me at Jonathan at sweet fish Mediacom. Let us know. We love connecting with be to be executives and we love sharing their wisdom and perspective with our audience. Thank you so much for listening. Until next time.

In-Stream Audio Search

NEW

Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (1705)