Michael Bird and Nik Sproal of Social Garden sit down to discuss the evolving customer journey and how developers and sales agents can use this to drive competitive advantage.
If you would like to learn more about the current state of your customer journey alignment, and close the gaps to drive sales conversions, register to download Social Garden's free Customer Journey Mapping Framework.
[Related reading: Content Marketing: The Next Level of Marketing for Property Developers]
Hi, I’m the CEO here at Social Garden. I’m with our Property Director, Nik Sproal, and today we’re going to talk about customer journey alignment.
Really what we're talking about there is, looking back twenty years ago, most sales experiences were really created the same. Where a prospect would be ready to enter the market, then they would engage a real estate agent or turn up at a display suite.
Whereas now, customers are entering the customer journey at all different stages, through all different channels. So, whether they’re just entering the research stage where they’re mid-funnel or they are at the sales end - each experience is really different and what they’re looking for is really different.
We’re going to talk about how we can leverage that to drive competitive advantage and increase sales conversion rates. So, Nik, with this changing landscape in mind, how can developers and real estate agents use that to drive competitive advantage?
Yeah, sure. I think, first it comes down to a mindset change because the property market’s always been ‘get minimal information as possible, get the lead in the door, don’t try to ask for too much’ because the more you ask for the more they will walk away.
Whereas the reality is that customers are happy to provide you with more of those classic intent markers of things like, when we want to purchase; what is is the status of our land if you’re a home builder; where are we at with finance; but in return they’ll want that personalised experience.
So you know, 60 per cent of people are filling out our profiling pages, asking that intent data, so people will provide that data. The flipside to that as well is that around 70 per cent of people have actively said in recent studies they’ll walk away if they don’t get that personalised experience in return. So, the environment developers are operating now is providing the environment to ask for, get and run personalised information.
Yeah, I think we start a lot of the time with clients really making the definition between what is a marketing qualified lead and what is a sales qualified lead. And often, we see that the marketing qualified lead is when they’re really still gathering that research and not ready to engage with the salesperson.
They do want to know that you’re there and they do want to make sure that all the information they’re receiving is personalised to them based on the stage of their journey, their preference and the like.
Yeah, absolutely. So I think that’s really a good point, Mike, because that’s the classic starting point for understanding where you’re at on that customer journey piece. Typically when we start these conversations with clients they’re very sales lead focus and there’s really no ecosystem in place for ‘how do I differentiate between the sales qualified lead and marketing qualified lead’ and ‘if I do, what do I do with the marketing qualified lead.’
Yeah, some of the key indicators that that customer experience piece isn’t quite right are things like negative product reviews online for developers, things like friction between the sales person getting too many leads and complaining the lead quality isn’t quite there.
The reality of the situation is that the prospects are at different stages in the journey and because they’re being treated like ‘buy right now’ that creates friction both for the salesperson and also for the consumer, who feels like they’ve been given the hard sell.
Yeah absolutely, I think the other side of this as well is when sales is the only focus of the journey. What happens is, so many leads get discarded and therefore so many leads need to come back into the top of the funnel to make way for those other leads.
And therefore, it’s actually really inefficient use of marketing budget to actually keep constantly pouring new activity into the top, when you can balance it between nurturing the leads you have and converting them, and also bringing new ones as well. There’s some really good benefits to the business in having that approach
I mean it’s a good time to be doing it as well now because so many developers are really burning those leads that are at the early stages.
Yeah absolutely and it makes that revenue modelling piece so fantastic as well because you really understand where people are at each stage of the cycle and you know how to actually move people through it effectively and efficiently.
Yeah so to help all the viewers out what we’ve done is created a simple framework that you can download. It outlines where you’re at now, where you’d like to get to, and really forms a good basis to develop a road map to get to that new customer experience.
Thanks very much, hope you enjoy the download, cheers!
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