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Lead Management

6 Ways to Better Manage Sales Leads — Turning More Prospects into Customers

Written By:

Stephanie Lanik;  Strategic Marketing Coordinator
As we’ve mentioned in our previous blog, leads are vital if you want your company to succeed. They are also one of the most valuable pieces of your sales cycle. Which is why so many businesses put such an emphasis on capturing more. But “more leads” don’t always equate to success. The way you manage sales leads from the first touch to close is crucial as well. It’s essentially the lifeblood of your business, regardless of company size or product sold.o.
Making the effort to improve the way you handle your leads is the best way to increase sales. More specifically, one of the most crucial aspects of your sales strategy is how you find, track, qualify, and nurture them. Which is also referred to as lead management.

Establishing a process to better manage sales leads doesn’t have to be complicated. With that being said, here are specific strategies you can use to convert more prospects and ultimately make more sales.

How to Better Manage Sales Leads to Get More Revenue

1. Have a Common Definition of Lead

First and foremost, your organization MUST have a united definition of a lead. This is in fact one of the biggest disconnects between marketing and sales.

When does a prospect become a lead? More importantly, when does it become a lead that a salesperson will actually work on? These are questions that need to be answered clearly and communicated to all departments. Having that clear understanding will help both sales and marketing successfully outline the buyers’ journey and targeting strategies. Ultimately, boosting sales effectiveness.

Then, once you’ve figured out when a lead is a good fit for your company, they become a “qualified” lead. These are the people you should focus your sales efforts on.

2. Score and Segment Your Leads

Don’t guess what your leads are worth or how likely they will convert into a customer. Use lead scoring and segmentation. Both are essential when it comes to managing sales leads and are the basis of a successful qualification process.

A solid lead scoring system improves the quality of the leads your sales team gets. Simply put, it weighs different factors to evaluate and rank how likely a prospect is to buy from you. From here, you can segment your contacts based on their lead scores. This allows you to isolate contacts in similar demographics and ensures only relevant messages are being sent to each prospect. Ultimately improving the success of your campaigns.

Picking out high-quality leads allows you to focus your resources on your best opportunities and streamlines your team’s performance. Which, in turn, can boost your sales velocity and bottom line.

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Pro Tip

As you integrate lead scoring and segmentation, make sure to continue working closely with sales and marketing.

3. Take Lead Nurturing Seriously

I can’t emphasize the importance of this enough. Every business needs to have a lead nurturing strategy. Why? Because it builds better leads, creates more sales opportunities, and generates more revenue.

How you nurture your sales leads depends on your customers’ readiness to purchase. Most people aren’t always ready to buy right away. For example, on average, only 27% of leads are qualified to the point where they are sales-ready (Source: MarketingSherpa). The remaining 73% are not there yet. These leads need nurturing.

Building Relationships with Your Prospective Customers

The key to a successful lead nurturing program is to build a trusting relationship with your prospective customers. Patricia Fripp; a professional business writer and speaker, said it best, “You don’t close a sale; you open a relationship if you want to build a long-term, successful enterprise.” With that being said, be sure to follow up on all your sales leads. More specifically, make sure you’re always communicating and listening to them. Give them content and connections they need to reach their goals and keep them coming back for more.
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Do you currently have an unsuccessful lead nurturing approach?

Take a look at some of the most common lead nurturing mistakes we’ve seen–and how to fix them. Or visit us at www.techtonicsales.com to see how we can amp up your nurturing approach.

4. Distribute Leads Fast (and Seamlessly)

This is the step where your marketing team passes off qualified, sales-ready leads to your sales team. It’s also said to be the easiest spot to lose out on potential sales. Even with a CRM in place, it’s possible for leads to slip through the cracks, or get passed prematurely.

During the transfer of ownership inside of your organization it’s very important to create a smooth hand-over process. More importantly, the process needs to be done quickly. In fact, data and studies make that very clear. Sales close rates increase drastically if they respond within the first five minutes of receiving a qualified lead. By responding quickly, you set yourself apart from your competitors.

Collaboration Between Departments

One more thing, when it comes to effective lead hand-offs, collaboration between marketing and sales is a MUST. If both teams are on the same page, it lowers the possibility of a sales lead getting dropped or neglected. It also ensures that your sales reps are spending more time on prospects who are willing and able to buy. So, just remember, moving a lead from marketing to sales should feel like a natural progression — not a leap.

5. Treat Prospects as Your Next Lifelong Customer

Converting sales leads to be “loyal” customers isn’t always easy. It takes extraordinary focus, commitment, and intention and it all starts with how you treat your leads. In other words, try treating them like your next lifelong customer.

During the sales process, how you treat your prospects while in the consideration stage can make or break a sale. It essentially gives them a glimpse into what life as YOUR customer could look like. If this experience turns sour, so does the lead. Which is why you need to serve as a valuable resource before they buy. This will help build trust and have a significant impact on your overall success rate. Sales leads are valuable, don’t waste them.

Above all else, remember that the conversion point is not a point where you stop engaging with your customers. Continue the engagement, and create a strategy for nurturing and relationship building beyond then final sale. [Check out our comprehensive and fully integrated Voice of the Customer (VoC) program that’s designed to do just that!]

6. Track and Measure Your Team's Efforts

Lastly, the way you manage your sales leads should always be improving. And the best way to do this is by tracking, monitoring, analyzing, and adjusting your process. Bust first your need to decide what you want to measure and why. Once those KPIs are identified, it will be easier to determine the ROI of your activities and their overall impact.

But how will you get those insights? A good CRM platform can help measure and manage every aspect of your sales process. Ultimately turning those data points into strategic decisions.

Need Helping Managing and Engaging Your Leads?

We help businesses like yours keep up with leads… from the moment they show interest, to the time they’re closed. Using our lead engagement process, we will engage, qualify, and nurture your prospects—maximizing the value of every lead you obtain.
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Take Full Control of Your Leads!

Lead engagement sits at the intersection of marketing and sales. So if you want to take full control of your leads and sales pipeline, talk to one of our experts today! Or click the button below to learn more.

[Contact us directly at (612) 455-7100 or toll-free at (888) 326-6118]

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