Written by Dave Meyer, President of BizzyWeb
You may have noticed a subtle shift in the way B2B companies engage with their clients. The days of “coffee is for closers” and hard-sell tactics are over, along with “smile and dial” canvassing of cold leads. Taking its place is a softer-touch approach of educating clients using online resources: websites, ads and social media activities that are designed to help their audience, and then automate ways to be more helpful and informative until a sale is the obvious final step. It’s called inbound, and it’s taking the best parts of the web and transforming business sales and marketing.
We’ve talked about inbound marketing in the past on our blog, and I’ve heard several times from our customers that they want to learn more about inbound and how to apply it to their marketing and business. Inbound Organization takes the principles of inbound and applies them to all levels of an organization. In a world where the buyer has all the information and control – where the answer is just a Google search away, and the one who helps the best wins the sale – it’s essential to be able to respond the way people expect.
As the idea of inbound has taken hold in business, the focus has expanded beyond marketing, and into sales and service. Focusing on the customer’s needs and how to meet and exceed their expectations is the best (and most future-proof) competitive advantage businesses can cultivate. Inbound centers on several core beliefs:
- Helping others is the right thing to do regardless of your economic self interest
- Focus beats bandwidth
- Treat people like human beings
- Solve for the customer
- The full customer experience is your best sustainable competitive advantage
- Collection and evaluation of data yields the best decisions
These core ideas are easy to grasp for customer-facing activities like marketing, sales and service – but if you can align your entire company around meeting the needs of every stakeholder, both internal and external, you’ll be able to react quickly and engage more effectively. Inbound Organization shows how to apply the principles of inbound to your company, starting with mission and culture, and using inbound decision making to create an inbound operating system.
The book shares easy tools like an inbound assessment and an MSPOT, outlining the Mission, Strategy, Plays, Omissions and performance Targets to help guide management through the steps required to become customer-focused and responsive. Each chapter includes easy “To Do” tips to make inbound a reality in your organization, and handy case studies personalize the material in language any business executive will enjoy.
If you’re looking to keep your business relevant in the age of the consumer – pick up a copy of Inbound Organization from Barnes & Noble or Amazon. It’s an easy read, and will leave you inspired to change your business to match the way the web works!
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