How to Spot Opportunities and Risks Faster: Top Sales Triggers

11 min read
26-Oct-2022

How to Spot Opportunities and Risks Faster: Top Sales Triggers 

As the world returns to some form of normality following the global pandemic, the shape of selling has fundamentally changed. While this brings many opportunities, it also presents new challenges that salespeople need to account for including building relationships in a virtual environment, adapting to uncertainty, and maintaining productivity in a hybrid working world.   

But one thing remains constant, and that is that timing in sales is everything – contacting the right prospects at the right time was before, and remains today, the number one goal for front-line sales teams. 

So how do you spot opportunities (or threats) that could impact your sales pipeline? 

The answer is sales trigger events. 

What is a sales trigger event? 

HubSpot’s definition of a sales trigger event is an occurrence that creates an opening for a marketing or a sales opportunity. A sales trigger is, therefore, something that specifically creates an opportunity for sales to engage. 

When urgency is vital, sales triggers can highlight an immediate need or buying signal, welcoming your sales engagement with open arms – perfect!! 

So how do you spot them? 

Uncovering sales triggers 

To spot sales triggers, sellers need to watch for the right signs, i.e., those that indicate the perfect time to reach out to a buyer. Sales triggers can be found in a variety of places: 

  • Newsby definition, news is information about recent events, and business news is an insight into your customers and prospects. 
  • Blogs – an excellent way to understand the culture and direction of a prospect organisation. 
  • Social Media LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Glassdoor etc. Recruitment drives, and views of customers, peers and employees can often be found on social media before they make mainstream news. Likewise monitoring hashtags can help identify people and companies that are associated with a topic, trend or concept in the markets you serve.
  • Corporate Information – data from reputable sources such as Companies House and Experian can help uncover key financials and corporate information, indicating a macro level picture of growth or other interesting insights.

 The problem with watching for sales triggers is the sheer number of sources and volume of data points available. In the past few years as more and more information, opinion and hard data has been generated and held in a vast myriad of places – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, blogs, newsfeeds and websites, it’s possible to find out just about anything about anyone. 

 

However, it’s often difficult to avoid drowning under a sea of data, making it difficult just to keep your head above the water, let alone being able to predict future needs. 

To put this into context it is estimated that we currently create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data every day. But by 2025, the amount of data generated each day is expected to reach 463 exabytes globally. 

 To track and analyse such a vast amount of data requires far more computing power than any human brain is capable of. Not great when urgency is so important. 

With the right tools, it’s possible to search through huge amounts of publicly available data, both structured and unstructured to uncover sales trigger events. 

So, what are the top sales triggers you should be looking out for? 

Top 10 best sales trigger events: 

Organisational expansion and growth 

Whether it be new geography, expansion into a secondary market, a new product or service announcement, a recruitment drive or mergers and acquisitions, there is always something new going on within any customer or prospect organisation, after all, expansion and growth is always high on the board room agenda. 

If they are expanding geographically or opening a new office, then they will have a budget for a whole raft of services and products offering primary introductory and upsell opportunities to quick off the mark sellers. 

If they are launching a new product/service or entering a new market the company is venturing into uncharted territory, and this calls for different types of support and potentially new vendors. 

If they are on a recruitment drive, they likely require a suite of new tools to manage their workflow, improve collaboration and generate efficiencies and productivity gains. All great opportunities for the savvy seller to offer innovative solutions. 

When it comes to M&A the coming together of two organisations is a golden opportunity to get a foot in the door during a time of new beginnings. 

Do this now: With FullCircl Engage the News tab of a company contains all articles specifically related to the company you are viewing that have been picked up by our news filters. Head to your FullCircl news feed and flick through some of the companies in your watchlists. Look out for the colour-coded Triggers. 

Leadership change 

A shakeup in management, like a new Director joining the ranks, indicates that there’s a new decision maker in town, one that in all likelihood has purchasing power, and will be looking for ways to make a quick and measurable impact on the business. 

They may be looking at ways to improve productivity, they might be scoping out new technologies, they might be looking for ways to save money, or even opportunities to enter a new market. Whatever their individual motivations they could be in a position to talk. 

Spotting leadership change sales triggers as early as possible gives a seller the chance to get in first, make headway with a new exec and get their product or service on the management radar. 

Do this now: Get creative. When you learn of a new senior director, send them something that gets you noticed from within FullCircl Engage. Simply hover over an article and you will notice that six buttons appear - these are called "social gestures". These buttons allow you to share or take action on an article. 

Market change 

What is going on around your customers and prospects – with their customers/end-users, changes within their market or amongst their competition? Markets evolve, and new markets emerge at an eye-watering pace. No matter what industry your buyers are in, there will always be market forces that they must contend with. 

This could be a new entrant to the market, a significant new product launch by a competitor, or a shift in customer dynamics affecting supply and demand. Don’t just look directly at your customer or prospect but track sales trigger events up and down their supply chain, monitor what’s happening within their customer base to identify potential needs the customer or prospect must fill, and use the insight gathered to help them deliver a solution before their competitors jump in. 

If a competitor has launched a rival product or beats your prospect to the punch with a new service, they will almost certainly be looking to make a bold response, again offering an opportunity for sellers to help. 

Likewise, a major industry or market shift will necessitate customers and prospects to capitalise on a new opportunity or avoid a potential emerging risk, again spotting these sales trigger events can help sellers to reach out quickly. 

Do this now: Create a FullCircl Engage watchlist based on your prospect’s customers. Visit your prospect’s website and look out for testimonials, customer logos and case studies, and keep an eye on what’s happening with those companies. Find something interesting? Let your prospect know about it. 

Legislation or regulatory changes 

No matter what industry you sell to, it’s worthwhile to keep a close eye on laws and regulations in case you can be of service in your buyers’ time of need. Every year, new and updated legislation and regulations put pressure on businesses, forcing them to comply within tight timescales or face eye-watering financial and reputational penalties. 

Take sanctions for example. Complex, volatile and rapidly evolving, the current global sanctions landscape, with its vast range of country-specific regulations, is a huge compliance challenge. You and your clients are required to ensure that the individuals, entities, and subsidiaries you do business with are not subject to sanctions.  However, achieving compliance and staying compliant is an incredibly complex process. Increasing regulatory scrutiny, as well as the inconsistent nature of global regimes, is putting intense pressure to raise the bar for sanctions compliance and awareness.   

Do this now: Get the information you need served directly to you via FullCircl rather than wasting valuable resources conducting the research yourself. Remediation costs remain mitigated, and you stay fully compliant with industry regulations. FullCircl is also offering free assistance to customers navigating the rapidly evolving sanctions landscape, get in touch with you customer success manager for more information. 

Financials 

Has your customer or prospect had a good quarter or a bad one? Are they having financial difficulties or an increase in expenses, or have they generated a new line of credit or received additional funding? 

Financial matters (good or bad) can be a very good motivator to buy, whether that be a product or service that can help reverse a downward trend, new initiatives that help accelerate growth, a product that helps save money or improve efficiency, or investment in new cutting-edge technology when they have money to burn. 

Identifying financial sales trigger events can open a multitude of opportunities to explain how your company is an asset to turn things around or help accelerate growth even further. 

Do this now: FullCircl Connect can easily perform your due diligence on any of your clients or prospects using our screening service. Likewise using FullCircl Engage you can set up custom alerts to automatically notify you of any changes to client financials including credit scores 

Strategic 

Your customer or prospect could be undergoing a complete change of focus and direction. If they are venturing into a new area this would almost certainly suggest that they will need to promote, upsell or cross-sell to current or new audiences, and this requires different types of support, new thinking, or innovative solutions. 

Spotting strategic initiatives can be hard, they are often closely guarded secrets. If you can pre-empt such moves by uncovering well-hidden sales triggers such as changes in buyer behaviour, you have the opportunity to align your service to their evolving needs, publish insightful content that could positively impact their evolution and therefore establish yours as a business most likely to be able to meet their needs. 

You may also be able to predict issues that could hamper their development and impress with your seemingly psychic ability to uncover obstacles before they themselves even know they lie ahead. 

Do this now: FullCircl’s Business Information Graph (B.I.G)™ ingests billions of data points every day from a multitude of official and third-party sources. We match and enrich this information to unlock the most accurate and contextualised view of every business in the UK and Ireland – giving you an up-to-the-minute view of what you need to know about an organisation, large or small. Use the insight gathered to build sophisticated sales strategies, marketing campaigns, and product/service development roadmaps that add value and establish you as a partner that will walk into new territory with them. 

Technology adoption 

Your customers have had to navigate and overcome a variety of challenges over the last 2 years, to say the least, and as a result we’ve witnessed a race to digitise.   Like in any race, there are winners and losers — those who track ahead of the pack and those who lag behind.  Make sure you and your customer always stay one step ahead. 

If a customer or prospect suddenly starts shelling out for expensive new technology or initiates migration to a new superior platform, there’s a great chance they’re cash-rich and looking to make changes to the way their business operates. On the other hand, they could be looking for a new technology solution because of a business challenge that the pandemic has sought to exacerbate. Both scenarios offer the perfect opportunity to reach out and engage. 

Do this now: FullCircl offers complete pipeline visibility meaning new opportunities can be identified far easier, and at less expense. As technology investments occur, you remain one step ahead and able to offer new services or broaden your cover. Drill down deeper into your FullCircl news feed and create filters based on tech-related stories.   

Events 

Awards and recognition, upcoming industry events, anniversaries and milestones are less obvious sales triggers, but all offer valuable opportunities to reach out. 

Whether it be a simple congratulatory email or a visit to their stand at a conference, spotting these sales triggers offers the chance to strike up a conversation. Sellers can also go a step further. 

A new award, accolade or industry ranking won by a company means it is moving in the right direction, offering sellers the opportunity to not just congratulate but provide ideas as to how they can continue to drive improvement, maintain their position, and stay ahead of the competition. 

Do this now: Even better than congratulating a company on a past award win, with FullCircl customer engagement triggers you can look out for nominations in upcoming awards – bag yourself a ticket to the award ceremony then drop a note to your prospect/customer telling them you’ll be there rooting for them. Buy them a drink if they win! 

Perception 

The views of customers, peers and employees can often offer up interesting insights about the challenges a customer or prospect is facing, pain points that are keeping them awake at night, or opportunities to improve. Uncovering perception sales triggers offers sellers an opportunity to intervene. Whether that be a new customer success initiative, a solution for improving employee efficiency, a new marketing strategy, or a new product. 

Analyst rankings and influencer opinions also matter greatly to every organisation. If a customer or prospect has recently received a high ranking they might be interested in solutions that help maintain their position, or alternatively if ranked low they might be interested in products/services that will help their business improve its position. 

Uncovering and utilising perception sales triggers demonstrates that sellers are learning and understanding customers and prospects from every conceivable angle, from the challenges felt by workers, the frustrations felt by end customers or the views and opinions of influencers, and every one of them is an opportunity for a seller to intervene. 

Do this now: Don’t just harness structured but get to grips with unstructured data. The FullCircl B.I.G with its 270 million connections between companies, officers, and shareholders, updated daily allows you to look at the customer from every angle, and look at the world through their lens. Where are they now, where do they want to be, and how can you help them get there? 

Risk 

Spotting an emerging risk that needs action in order to mitigate damage is a highly valuable sales trigger event. 

Say a seller becomes aware of the need for a customer or prospect to change the way they do things due to potential legal issues, risk-avoidance, or negative economic impact reasons, swooping in to offer help amidst a disaster can turn that seller into a hero. 

Risk sales trigger events offer an opportunity to put forward products or services that can help keep customers and prospects out of trouble in the future. 

Do this now: FullCircl provides immediate risk profile assessments to help you quickly understand who, how and when to serve customers based on their attributes and risk profile.  Or why not codify your policies for credit and risk by applying automation rules to data at the point of need using the FullCircl Rules Engine. 

Uncovering sales trigger events is an opportunity not to be missed 

Salespeople are always looking for new and better ways to contact prospects. Contacting a prospect at the right time is crucial.  

When you reach out to a prospect based on a trigger event, it increases conversion rate by a whopping *400%. It all comes down to when you contact your prospect If you’re not using trigger events for prospecting calls, whether they are internal or external trigger events, your entire team is missing out on a valuable sales technique. 

If you happen to contact at the right time with the right offer, you won’t have issues generating sales. As much as *75% of prospects respond to a well-timed email or call meaning that if you’re not using trigger events, you’re wasting a huge amount of effort on people who will likely never respond. 

Now that you understand the importance of sales trigger events, know what they are, and know how to use them to generate leads and sales, it is time to get cracking. 

Do Better Business, Faster with FullCircl 

What if there was a way to drive down the cost to acquire the best customers and anticipate their needs so your team is never on the back foot?  

Well, there is. 

Customer Lifecycle Intelligence (CLI) from FullCircl puts the customer back in focus, reducing cost to acquire and serve by up to 80%, while providing your customers with an experience that means they never look elsewhere.   

Empower your sales teams to know who to call, when and what to say.  With FullCircl’s deep insights, business know-how can be captured and codified to improve the value of opportunities exponentially.  In fact, our clients have increased the number of leads by as much as 300% and overseen an average order value rise of 50%.   

Check out how we helped BT Local Business generate £6.4 million in new revenue in just 12 months by augmenting opportunities with real-time news, social media and people insights. Helping local businesses to gain an in-depth understanding of their pipeline, act quickly on opportunities, anticipate needs, and engage proactively in more sophisticated ways based on a real understanding of trends, sentiments, and needs. 

How fast are you read to go?  Talk to us today. 

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