Fortunately, the market is realizing that the time has come to end this dichotomy between “Inbound vs. Outbound”.
When we talk about lead generation, betting on a single strategy can slow down results and even waste business opportunities.
But how to manage sales with two different funnels?
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The answer is a relatively old tool, but still little used in Brazil: the Y sales funnel. It emerged as a way to integrate the leads that started to be generated with Inbound Marketing actions to the traditional funnel, which was already used for Outbound Marketing.
In this article, we’ll talk about this evolution of the sales funnel, which integrates leads generated from different sources, considering points such as their average conversion speeds and consolidating the actions needed to close them.
What is a Y sales funnel?
And what does the Y sales funnel comprise? As we said, it is the evolution of the traditional funnel, the one in which we follow the essential steps that the lead takes in its base, from the first contact, to the acquisition – this for both Inbound and Outbound Sales.
In the Y funnel, however, the funnels from both strategies integrate, allowing you to track all your lead acquisition sources in one place, as well as combine actions from the two strategies.
This happens, for example, with the migration of leads prospected by Outbound, but outside the moment of purchase, to the inbound nutrition funnel, avoiding the loss of this contact, which is already within the ideal customer profile (ICP).
The Y sales funnel, therefore, is a very simple way to view leads and business opportunities in a unified way, with the great advantage of optimizing processes and accelerating results by integrating actions.
How does inbound lead capture work?
To better understand the Y sales funnel and its advantages, it’s worth remembering these two main sources of lead generation, Inbound and Outbound.
The Inbound Marketing strategy is one in which leads are attracted to your base through content (such as blog and social networks, for example), even before they are clear about the need to purchase your product or service.
It is a slower sales funnel, precisely because the lead is not ready for acquisition, but it requires less commercial effort and usually has better conversion rates.
Despite being a very valuable strategy for companies, however, investing only in selling through Inbound Sales requires patience and a good initial investment, since leads will take time to actually convert into results.
And for Outbound, how is lead generation?
Since inbound sales require maturation time for leads to become customers, it is necessary to combine this strategy with the one that guarantees results in the shortest possible time and which has been part of our commercial experience for a long time, the Outbound.
In this model, sales are based on prospecting and a direct approach, either by phone or through channels such as email, LinkedIn or even Whastapp.
And, while in Inbound the evolution of the leads in the funnel takes place through nutrition flows, here it happens based on a cadence of approaches.
The advantages of the Y sales funnel for commercial management
Although Inbound and Outbound are different models, they are usually led by the same Marketing and Sales teams. This means that, even when managed separately, they end up getting very similar treatment.
So, why not merge these two models into one, simplifying the area’s routine and taking advantage of common opportunities?
There are important advantages to taking this measure, of which we list the main ones below:
Integration between strategies
It doesn’t make sense for the same company or sales team to work in such a different way with the leads generated from different strategies.
We often see different processes and even pricing and negotiation conditions (which can end up being detrimental to the business).
By uniting the models in a single management and monitoring tool, it is possible to monitor the results globally and trace actions that consider the evolution of leads in the purchasing process in a more optimized way.
Leveraging Outbound Leads
We mentioned above that one of the possible integrations allowed by the Y sales funnel is to migrate outbound prospects to inbound nutrition streams.
In this way, it avoids wasting a large base raised and proactively approached, but which was not at the perfect time for the acquisition.
Likewise, when they move to inbound nutrition flows, these leads already have an important qualification: they are within the ideal customer profile, with a higher probability of conversion.
Acceleration of Inbound Leads
Likewise, inbound leads can also migrate to outbound actions.
This happens when the commercial team prospects leads for approach within the company’s own inbound base, based on the interaction analysis or the profile raised from the forms.
Thus, those contacts who already have the characteristics of an ideal customer can be approached weeks or months earlier than expected within the nutrition flows, accelerating results and ensuring greater assertiveness for the sales team.
Single funnel lets you focus on rising from the top of the funnel continuously, but needs follow-up
As we have seen, working with the Y sales funnel is a way to integrate two models that work very well so that they become even more efficient and bring even more results.
In this way, even the sales manager, together with the Marketing team, can see ways to continuously and progressively increase the volume at the top of the funnel, regardless of which origins these contacts will have.
And most importantly: with less wasted sales effort and faster closing. After all, as we know, these factors have been essential at a time of optimization of resources and efforts for greater market competitiveness.
But, for the Y sales funnel to be really effective, don’t forget the need to bet on good practices for its use:
1. Constant monitoring of metrics
Sales metrics need to be in the focus of business management at all times, but even more so when two lead generation models are combined.
When integrating actions, be sure to monitor whether factors such as Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) and Lifetime Value (LTV) really improve or whether it is just the volume of new customers that increases.
These two metrics speak volumes about the quality of the deals closed, and they can often matter more than volume.
2. Optimization of the sales team
From the use of the Y funnel, the effort of the sales team must also be optimized.
For this, the training of salespeople is essential, in order to help them understand the right time to migrate a lead from one model to another.
It is also recommended to monitor how much the transition from a traditional sales funnel to a Y funnel really means less effort to reach closure, which will help in managing the team and in its division by functions or activities.
Ready to adopt the Y sales funnel?
The Y sales funnel unites the best of the Inbound and Outbound models, so that they can finally walk together towards the best results. Adopting it helps to accelerate results and also facilitates business management, seeing the movement of prospects in a single path to conversion.