Cat and mouse and demand generation

The Internet has provided both prospect and prospector with advantages in the sales process: as the prospector, you can now dutifully research your prospects and target with pinpoint accuracy those who will need (whether they currently know it or not) your product or service; on the other hand, your prospect can now research you, and may likely decide before you make your sales pitch if it’s worth his time to hear it.

Does that now negate the sales pitch?

Just about, if you structure your inbound marketing and demand generation platforms correctly.

What? You don’t even know what inbound marketing is, or what demand generation does?

Phil Fernandez, president of Marketo, provides what I think is the best definition of inbound marketing, or what some of us call demand generation:

“Inbound marketing is the process of helping prospective customers find your company, often before they are actively looking to make a purchase, and then progressively turning that early awareness into brand preference, knowledge of your products and services, and a buyer’s journey that ultimately leads to booked revenue for your business.”

Demand generation and inbound marketing programs are the market’s response to the advantage – and disadvantage – that the Internet has created in the marketplace. As prospects more easily seek you out, you can, in turn, seek out more prospects. It’s a game of cat and mouse in which the playing field tips depending on who’s working the hardest.

Demand generation programs fueled by marketing automation tools can help you work the hardest, providing timely, helpful and strategic information for your prospects to find.

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