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8 min read

Understanding your sales prospect: The complexity of the buyer's journey

Membership content | Sales Enablement

This article is based on a presentation by Tracy Schlabach, Director of Marketing at Accusoft, at the Masters of Product Marketing in October 2022. At the time of the presentation, she was Head of Marketing at the same company. Catch up on this presentation and others, using our OnDemand service.

Back in 2018, Gartner ran a survey to uncover the secrets of the buyer's journey. They learned that buyers got approximately 60% of the way to a purchasing decision before they engaged with the sales department.

Fast forward to 2021, they redid the survey and found that buyers were now 80% of the way through the purchasing decision before they spoke to a salesperson.

That leaves precious little time for the sales team to influence their choice. We fully expect that trend to continue, and that means your marketing and your brand are more important than ever.

In this article, I'll focus on:

  • The typical buyer's journey,
  • Getting to know your sales prospects,
  • Multiple personas in the purchasing process,
  • Building buyer personas,
  • Putting the knowledge to work,
  • The buyer’s journey, and
  • Tracking persona engagement.

The typical buyer's journey

Let’s start by taking a look at a typical buyer’s journey today.

Step one: Identification

This is the point at which a company identifies and decides to invest in a solution in order to reach its goals.

As an example of the kind of timeframe you could be looking at here, my company just decided to replace its existing CRM with Salesforce; between discussions about how the old CRM was not meeting our needs and the resolution to invest in a new solution, this step took over a year.

Written by:

Tracy Schlabach

Tracy Schlabach

Tracy Schlabach is the Director of Marketing at Accusoft.

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Understanding your sales prospect: The complexity of the buyer's journey