Discovery calls have always been an essential step in the lead qualification process. Nothing beats a two-way conversation when it comes to understanding your leads’ pain points and overall expectations.
Despite the fact that discovery “calls” are always associated with phones, it doesn’t have to be this way. At least not now. In the past years, this has been justifiable as other means of communication weren’t as advanced as they are now.
In the age of social media, there are other ways for the discovery process asides from the good old-fashioned fall calls. Among the other possible text-based communication channels, LinkedIn messages truly stand out.
There are plenty of reasons why text-based discovery processes in general and LinkedIn messages, in particular, are worth considering today. Unlike what many people think, LinkedIn can be used beyond the lead generation and nurturing phase.
If you're already using LinkedIn marketing and automation tools, a LinkedIn-based discovery process can help you streamline your entire sales process. It'll work flawlessly with all the other LinkedIn tools and automation software that you're using.
The following are the top reasons why a discovery process that's not based on calls is more feasible than ever.
Text-Based Communication is Catching Up. FAST
Compared to text-based communication channels, phone calls were faster and more personal. People preferred getting phone calls to receiving texts. But do people still prefer phone calls today?
Recent studies show that the phone app is the FIFTH most commonly used app on smartphones. Even on smartphones, calls aren’t the favorite communications method. It’s texting.
Text-based communication channels are quickly catching up to phone calls in terms of quality. They’re no longer a clunky and awkward way to communicate.
Not only has online messaging become better, but also people’s perception of this type of communications have changed. You don’t have have to get someone's phone number and call them on their phone for a discovery call anymore.
Nowadays, LinkedIn messages are as important as phone calls. People take these messages seriously and any information that can be exchanged with a phone call can be exchanged with a LinkedIn message.
Social network messages are no longer for casual texting only, especially on the LinkedIn network. People use LinkedIn for all kinds of serious communications, which is expected, given the professional nature of the platform.
If the current trend continues as expected, phone calls will become optional. With the rapid growth in the popularity of professional social networks like LinkedIn, this is will probably happen soon.
Different Channel. Different Possibilities
Using LinkedIn messages instead of the traditional discovery calls has its own unique advantages. Unlike in phone calls, you can share different types of content directly with your customers, which opens the door for better discussion.
Sharing things like case studies is super-easy when you’re communicating via LinkedIn messages with other LinkedIn users. Salespeople can share all kinds of relevant data that helps both parties involved in the conversation decide if they’re a good match for each other.
This is something that’s not possible over a phone call. Sure, you can tell a client to check out this case study or that file, but it’s much more effective when you send it over to them directly. They will have questions, you’ll have answers and the entire conversation will be way smoother.
The benefits of sending data go both ways. Your LinkedIn leads can share different kinds of information with you, which will help you better understand their unique business needs.
A text-based discovery process isn’t just a possibility that you should consider. It allows for better discovery calls compared to what’s possible over the phone.
Your leads can re-read the conversation
Your leads will probably want to take their time before they make a decision. That’s how decision making works for most people.
When you send messages instead of the traditional discovery calls, you give people something that they can refer to later to make a final decision. You’ve had some great discovery calls with some leads and they need some time to think things over.
Instead of leaving them to try and remember everything that was said during the discovery calls -which can be really long, they have the entire conversation to refer to at any time. All of your well-thought answers and data are available to refresh their memory and making the decision much easier.
The alternative would be people trying to remember on their own or worse, forgetting some important details. It's true that you can send people a follow-up message after a discovery call. Having the conversation itself in writing, however, is much better.
Despite being less personal as you’re not “talking” to the person, LinkedIn messages can be more convenient for many of your target audience who have a LinkedIn account, or even multiple LinkedIn accounts in some cases.
New times require new ways
Discovery calls have been around for a very long time. When salespeople started using them, they didn’t have the alternative communication channels they have today. It was a different time with different technologies.
It might have been more convenient a couple of decades ago, but is this the ONLY way for the discovery process? People live much faster lives now and you should adapt your discovery process to your leads’ lifestyle, not the other way around.
LinkedIn is becoming more popular and if that’s where your customers are at, it’s where you should be. Even if some of your leads prefer having these discovery calls over the phone, giving them the option to choose between a phone call and LinkedIn messaging shows them that you’re a customer-driven business.
This first impression tells a lot about a company and will help you convert more of your LinkedIn connections into leads and customers. In a world that’s changing so fast, keeping up with the latest sales and marketing tools is essential for any B2B or B2C business that wants to provide excellent service and convert more leads.
People create their LinkedIn profiles to discuss business-related issues, so you're taking the conversation to the right place. That's why making new connections on LinkedIn is very important. All the connection requests that you send out have the potential of generating new leads for your business. With the high acceptance rate of LinkedIn invitations, this shouldn't be a difficult task.
Social selling and LinkedIn automation tools are already taking the sales world by storm. When discovery calls through LinkedIn messages become the new norm, you want your business to be ready.