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Lead Engagement

How to Effectively Engage Your Inbound Leads (and Close More Deals)

Written By:

Stephanie Lanik;  Strategic Marketing Coordinator
Congratulations, qualified prospects are downloading your whitepapers, watching your videos, and engaging with your content. Meaning, your inbound marketing campaigns are successfully generating leads. I bet it feels great knowing that all your hard work is paying off. But is that enough?

The answer is simple… Not even close!

Far too often, we hear about inbound successfully driving enough leads but those leads never converting to sales. Meaning those valuable leads you worked so hard to get sit untouched for days before anyone ever reaches out. What’s worse, is by the time someone eventually reaches out, it’s already too late.

There seems to be a misconception that inbound leads = SALES. That’s not the case. Just because someone visits your website and downloads a piece of content doesn’t mean they are ready to buy. Moreover, just because they are considered a “warm lead”, doesn’t make them a guaranteed sale.

The reality is, simply getting the lead is just the first important milestone on your journey to generating accelerated revenue.

So, I guess the real question is, after inbound produces the lead, what comes next?

Before we dive into details of how to connect and engage your inbound leads, let’s establish exactly what they are.

What is an Inbound Lead?

Simply put, inbound leads come to you, you don’t have to go to them. This is based around the concept of inbound marketing, which is the practice of bringing people to your site.

Inbound leads interact and engage with your content, service, and/or product(s) based on their own volition. Typically, they will make the first contact with you by filling out a contact form or sending an email. Then, once they’ve expressed both awareness and interest in your brand, they are considered a marketing qualified lead (MQL).

Yes, inbound leads can very promising. However, you won’t reap any of the rewards until you actually connect, engage, and qualify them.

Here are 5 Ways to Effectively Engage and Convert Your Inbound Leads

1. Align your Sales and Marketing Efforts

The alignment and connection between sales and marketing is a very crucial element of any successful inbound marketing strategy. When implemented correctly, it helps optimize your sales process, which enables both teams to properly engage, nurture, and qualify leads. It essentially moves prospects seamlessly down the funnel while reducing the number of missed opportunities.

But remember, this is not just a marketing issue, nor is it just a sales issue. To achieve overall growth, both teams must be equally invested in the program.

2. Respond and Assign Leads Quickly

There are several ways to engage inbound leads, but they’re all dependent on time. But how much time should it take to engage with an inbound lead? A day? 2 Hours? 30 minutes? It’s actually way less than you think.

It should be less than 5 minutes.

If someone comes to your website and fills out a form or requests a demo, you need to respond immediately. There’s no excuse for an inbound lead to sit in the queue for days before a sales rep reaches out. That’s why our rule of thumb is to respond to leads within 5 minutes of engagement with our content. In fact, our data has proven that by doing so, we’ve been able to significantly increase our clients’ conversion rates. Supporting research also states that you’re 21 times more likely to get those leads into your pipeline.

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Key Note:

Every minute that passes by while you wait to follow-up is time wasted. It’s the time that’s wasted where your competitor will swoop in and take what should have been yours. Be sure to separate inbound from outbound leads and push those high-priority ones to the front, every time.

3. Nurture Your Leads Throughout Each Stage

A successful lead nurturing program anticipates the needs of the buyer. This is typically based on two things: their buyer persona and where they’re at in the buyer’s journey. The key here is to nurture those leads in stages.

In other words, each inbound lead is different and each lead will be at various stages of the buying process. This means you have to proceed differently with each one in order to connect and engage with them. So it’s important to understand what content fits into what stage of your lead nurturing program. Otherwise, you’ll end up sending the wrong content at the wrong time, which leads to buyer confusion or resistance. Which ends with your inbound leads either getting lost in your sales funnel or abruptly exiting it.

By providing the most relevant content, your leads will stay engaged throughout the entire nurturing process. More importantly, it will build strong brand loyalty well before a prospect is ready to buy.

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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. Personalize Your Nurturing Efforts

Nowadays, it’s important to remember that today’s customers crave personalization, support, and rapport with brands. Unfortunately, automation kills that — no matter what. This is especially true when it comes to effectively engaging and nurturing your inbound leads. In fact, according to DemandGen Report, leads who are nurtured with targeted content produce a 20% increase in sales opportunities. Your content needs to be tailored to the prospects’ interest, their job title, location, and most importantly, their buyer persona.

When done properly, providing personalized content will make your inbound leads feel valued. Thus, pushing them further down the sales funnel.

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Pro Tip

Start by properly segmenting your nurturing lists. This helps create the perfect opportunity to reach out to your prospects with personalized and targeted content.

5. Create an Engagement Workflow/Process

If you weren’t able to get in touch with that inbound lead immediately, no problem. Yes, your chances of connecting may drop, but if there’s one thing that we know it’s this: persistence wins.

Your team can’t give up on these valuable prospects after just one try. Instead, there should be set expectations for how many times your sales reps should engage with inbound leads before moving on. The best way to do this is by building out a clear engagement process. Although this may sound pretty simple, many companies have poorly optimized processes that result in poor lead conversion. This is why implementing a clear, consistent, multi-touch outreach process is crucial. It helps your sales reps understand what leads are worth their time and effort, and which ones aren’t. Likewise, it ensures they are never confused or uncertain about how to engage with the next inbound lead.

6. Measure, Improve, and Measure Again

You must continually work to improve your engagement process. Peter Druker said it best, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it”. Meaning you can’t know whether or not you are successful unless success is defined and tracked.

Start by keeping it simple and begin tracking:

  • How many inbound leads did you receive each week?
  • How long did it take to respond to each lead? (the time between when the lead is received until a salesperson talks to them for the first time)
  • What percentage of your inbound sales leads are converted into qualified prospects?
  • What percentage of your inbound sales leads are converted into customers?
The bottom line is if you want to successfully transform inbound leads into revenue, you must move fast. More importantly, both sales and marketing need to be prepared to engage with them effectively and consistently. And, with the right sales engagement, before you know it, an inbound lead will quickly become your newest customer.

Ready to Engage and Convert Your Inbound Leads More Effectively?

At Techtonic Sales, we help businesses like yours keep up with your inbound leads. Not just only from the time they show interest, but to the time they’re a closed/won deal. Our highly trained experts work as a direct extension of your sales team—connecting, engaging, nurturing, and qualifying your leads.
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We work to bridge the gap between your marketing and sales, making sure no leads are lost, dropped, or tossed.

Our lead engagement process enables more dials, better relationships, improved conversion rates, and greater ROI. It’s specifically designed to maximize the probability of sales success… And we can prove it!

With that being said, don’t miss out on any sales opportunities and talk to one of our experts today! Or simply 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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