Friction is the number one growth killer in a B2B company.
And yet, so many companies struggle with it.
They focus on building awareness and driving website traffic but then encounter slowdowns when it comes to turning visitors into actual leads. The prospects know you exist, but where do they go from there?
Friction leads to a longer sales cycle, higher customer acquisition costs, and more headaches for your sales team.
Here’s how to reduce friction across the Buyer’s Journey so you win over more customers and drive revenue growth.
Got Friction? Don’t Do This.
In an attempt to “get more” from your marketing, focusing on tactics just introduces more friction across the buyer’s journey.
And this is where most marketing teams get stuck. You need more leads, demos, trials, views, site traffic. And this typically introduces more and more friction across the buyer's journey.
Adding “company size” to lead forms so that sales can qualify buyers out before they even have a conversation.
Putting pricing behind a sales wall to cast a wider net, whether the prospect can afford the product or not.
Creating gated ebooks so you can drop unsuspecting buyers into a sales cadence.
This is because you’ve made the journey all about you and not about what actually matters to your buyers.
What Friction Looks Like for Most B2B SaaS Companies
In general, the buyer’s journey consists of the Awareness stage, the Consideration stage, and the Decision stage.
These stages present multiple opportunities for friction and bottlenecks. Friction across the buyer’s journey stunts growth and hinders your overall sales strategy.
Here’s what this looks like for most B2B SaaS companies:
- Messaging focuses on pain points, not on buyer’s current narrative
- Confusing value proposition or an inability for a buyer to experience or understand the value proposition without sales assistance (common in midmarket and enterprise sales)
- Sales copy focuses on features and not on how it meets buyer’s goals
- Website is hard to navigate or poor user flow
- Website forms ask for too much information from users
- Failure to lead with the product and show how it solves problems (no screenshots, etc)
- Misleading CTAs that trick buyers. “View a Demo” when you’re really asking a buyer to schedule a demo or “Request a Trial” with sales qualification.
- Lead follow up takes days, if not longer
- Focus on free demos and not on education, value, and conversation
- No case studies, testimonials, and other content assets to build trust
- Failure to address buyers fears, questions, objections, and anxieties in a way that creates urgency and demand
- Hidden or confusing pricing
- Needed information to make a purchase decision behind a sales wall (typically to bait buyers into contacting sales)
To Reduce Friction, Adopt Buyer-Led Growth.
Don’t get stuck updating tactics. Instead of focusing your attention on ads, messaging, headlines, brand awareness, and content, you should be focusing on identifying friction and shifting the beliefs of potential buyers to give rise to their needs.
Adopting a Buyer-Led Growth mindset starts with removing friction across the buyer’s journey so that your SaaS marketing and sales process align with how B2B buyers want to buy today.
This shift alone will be an immediate growth lever for your B2B SaaS company.
The first part of our growth process is to identify and remove friction across the buyer's journey. Below is an actual customer that started in January focusing on moving up market to 1k+ company size. Most of this additional demo growth was a direct reaction to removing friction.
Imagine your sales team hearing from prospects: “Your marketing really spoke to me” and “You guys really understand what I need.”
This is what happens when you have a frictionless buyer’s journey and a brand narrative that really resonates with where buyers are now. You’re able to dramatically shift how buyers see their world. Further, your marketing begins to create urgency and real demand.
100% of our customers see a positive ROI when using Elevate Demand as their B2B Growth Marketing Agency.
Book a call with our founder to see how removing friction and adjusting your marketing approach to buyer-led growth can transform your marketing.
5 Tactics for Reducing Friction in Marketing and Sales
Friction across sales and marketing makes for a poor experience for prospects and leads to inflated customer acquisition costs for you. When it comes to reducing friction, again, you’ll want to think in terms of optimizing every stage of the buyer’s journey.
Ask (and Answer) the Right Questions
Someone at the Awareness stage of the buyer’s journey may be at a point where they are aware that they have a problem but aren’t quite sure where or how to find a solution. Or, with most buyers they are unaware, vaguely aware, or not in pain enough to care about solving their problem.
It’s at this point where you need to work to make the buyer “problem aware” and shift their perspective so they understand what they are struggling with and why finding a solution is necessary.
This presents several important questions for you to answer:
- What are the buyers’ current beliefs and habits?
- What fears and anxieties do your buyers face?
- What issue is your ideal buyer facing now?
- Are they actively searching for a solution?
- If not, what information would point them in the right direction?
- How can your product help them solve their problem?
This is where creating an effective brand narrative comes in. This is at the foundation of your entire Buyer-Led Growth strategy.
Cultivating a brand narrative will shift your focus away from what you’re selling and toward meeting the buyer where they are in their current state of mind.
Then, you can inspire them to question the way they are operating today so they are inclined to learn more about your offer (i.e., the solution).
2. Help Buyers Weigh Their Options
In the Consideration stage, buyers use their own criteria to weigh their options – looking for valuable information, creating a shortlist of solutions, and considering a variety of features offered by opposing companies.
This is where many brands (prematurely) come in with the hard sell. Instead, you should be working hard to understand your ideal buyer’s core criteria and then creating content that fits the bill.
The goal here is to speak to buyers with the context of how your product solves their problems. You should communicate how you’re here to make their lives easier, as well as why you deserve to be on their shortlist of options.
You can do this through content marketing, social media marketing, conversations, and email marketing. Overall, the aim is to provide potential buyers with all the information they need to decide for themselves whether your product is the best option for them.
3. Provide Value Upfront
During the Evaluation stage, potential buyers are weighing the features and benefits of their potential options. They are not yet ready to pull the trigger. Instead of hitting them with the sales conversation, this is a good opportunity to build trust by providing value upfront.
Content assets like how-to guides, comparison guides, case studies, and testimonials will serve to build trust with your audience. These assets should be ungated so they are readily accessible to your potential customers.
If you are putting all your value behind an opt-in wall, you are adding more friction to the process. Provide value upfront so your potential customers are primed and warm before they ever hop on a sales call.
4. Build Trust Through Transparency
Another way to reduce friction is to offer transparency in your pricing. How much your product costs and what your payment structure looks like should not be a mystery.
You are not going to “trick” people into buying from you by being secretive about your pricing. By this point, they should already know whether you are the right fit and can make an informed decision about whether the benefits of your offer outweigh the financial costs.
Objection handling is also a key part of this. Your goal should be to answer all of your prospect’s questions so they can make a smart, informed choice on what is best for their organization.
5. Nurture Customer Loyalty
Customer retention is an often overlooked part of this process and is an area where friction can hinder growth. After all, it’s much more cost-effective to keep an existing customer than to acquire a new one.
Once a customer buys from you, this should not be the end of the engagement. Follow-up and nurturance will help build customer loyalty and, in turn, expand your referral network. It presents an opportunity for upselling, cross-selling, and attracting new customers.
Less Friction, More Growth.
The best marketing isn’t about selling features, benefits, and products. It’s about adopting a mindset where the buyer has control of the entire process.
At Elevate Demand, we help B2B brands reduce friction across every stage of the buyer’s journey by adopting a Buyer-Led Growth model for success. We’ll work with you to break free of the scale/stagnation cycle and generate consistent, measurable results for your business.
Are you seeing the results you deserve from your marketing? If not, it may be that friction is holding you back. Start Here to streamline your marketing-to-sales pipeline and generate the revenue growth you deserve.