Here’s a traditional B2B outbound sales strategy:
- Research a bunch of people in your target audience on LinkedIn.
- Download their email addresses.
- Create a list.
- Send outreach emails that hopefully don’t sound too salesy.
- Hope people respond.
- Follow up a few times with people who don’t respond (which is most of them).
Dirk Lustig, a sales and marketing specialist at Openclaims, knows just how much work that process can be with so little payoff.
Openclaims is a Netherlands-based B2B software company that helps insurance companies manage auto insurance claims.
Because there’s a limited number of companies that manage auto insurance in their country, they already know who their customers are.
“We have the list of companies, but we didn’t know whom to approach or when,” Dirk explained.
With 70 percent of business coming from outbound sales, Openclaims was looking for a better way to qualify leads.
They wanted to contact the right people at the right time.
Using Mailchimp and Leadfeeder, they came up with a four-step lead qualifying process that gives them the perfect timing and point of contact for their product.
We spoke to Dirk about it to learn more about how it works.
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1. Identify Companies That Are Visiting Your Website
Before launching the current process, their decision about who to reach out to and when was much less strategic.
“We would just go top-to-bottom with the list we already had,” Dirk told us.
Openclaims worked to figure out when to reach out to a specific company, a process that started with identifying the companies that visit Openclaims’ website.
Openclaims uses Leadfeeder to see what companies have visited their site. This gives them the power to see what pages were visited and how long visitors stayed on the site.
That analysis gives Openclaims a signal that says someone from a specific company is interested.
It doesn’t, however, 100 percent confirm who at the company is interested. For that, Openclaims uses Mailchimp.
2. Identify the People Who Are Visiting
For this step, Openclaims starts by leveraging its existing Mailchimp database of email subscribers from the insurance industry.
“Let’s say ABC Insurance Company visited us,” Dirk told us. “We can create targeted email campaigns through Mailchimp, and then see who looks at what from there on.”
The team will create targeted email lists in Mailchimp that only includes emails from individuals at the company that visited the website.
Those targeted email campaigns get sent to the top three or so companies that visited their site that month. Most importantly: they are not sales emails.
“We offer a PDF download of good tips or something like that,” Dirk said. “The main point is to get them to our website to see which products they’re interested in.”
Here’s an example of one of those emails, which the company sends in Dutch:
Since Mailchimp goes to individual email addresses, Openclaims can then use Mailchimp open to track exactly who opened the emails and clicked through to their site.
By integrating Leadfeeder with Mailchimp, they can see who clicked and what pages that person visited. That information can then be fed directly into a CRM or sent via Slack or email.
If the company that visited their website isn’t already in their Mailchimp database, they’ll look for people in claims management roles to contact directly (through outreach emails or cold calls).
They also use Leadfeeder’s integration with LinkedIn, which gives the contact information of employees. Openclaims also looks for email addresses publicly available on the company’s site.
“We aim to redirect these people to our downloads or content subscriptions, which allows us to then email them directly from Mailchimp,” Dirk said. “These emails are still content updates. However, it is from here where we start to track their activity on an individual level rather than just by company.”
3. Track What Pages They’re Looking At
Sending emails through Mailchimp doesn’t just tell Openclaims who visited the site from the emails. It also reveals what pages they viewed.
That activity says a lot about the position and interest of an individual.
If a qualified prospect—the claims managers and C-level individuals—clicks through the email and makes it to a product page or a pricing page, the marketing team alerts sales, and someone from the sales team reaches out.
“If it’s an IT person, for example, looking at our job page, then it doesn’t really help us,” Dirk said. “But if we see that it’s a claims manager or a C-level person looking at one of our product pages, then the sales side initiates.”
One of the goals of the emails is to interest the reader in OpenClaim’s products, just like one of the goals of the website is to encourage visitors to request a demo. But the primary goal of all of it—newsletters, website, ads, etc.—is to start a conversation.
4. When the Right Person Looks at the Right Pages, It’s Sales Time
As any good comedian will tell you, timing is everything.
The magic of Openclaims’ strategy is that the sales team uses a very similar process to the one we describe in the introduction.
They identify a contact, they reach out, they follow up, they try to make contact and start a conversation.
The difference is: instead of reaching out blindly, Openclaims sales reps reach out at exactly the right time—after a prospect has already visited the website.
“It’s mainly figuring out the optimal time to strike to get that deal,” Dirk told us. “If we know that the right person is interested at the right time, we can initiate that discussion that can turn into a deal.”
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