Measure Your Results
Measuring your results gives you a tool that you can use to keep your business on track with your goals. If you are not measuring the results of your sales endeavors you are giving yourself a great handicap. This is something that must be taken seriously from the top down in your organization. Create a plan to invest in monitoring your results. Firms with a formal strategy for evaluating the effectiveness of their marketing and business development programs are 240% more likely to say they are extremely effective against their competitors. That’s a big deal!
Especially if your team are not used to tracking their time and their results, you may experience some push back as you start to implement the reporting process. Make it clear to your team that the reasons behind it are for you as a manager to be a more efficient with your resources, and that it will result in your team being more focused and productive. Do not allow apathy, resistance to change, or any other obstacle to dissuade you from measuring your activities, monitoring the results and implementing change. Keep in mind that your metrics must be simple, tangible, objective and observable.
Look for Leads from Prospects with Needs
Of course, we would all like to land accounts with the biggest clients in the world. It can be tempting to spend our time focused on the largest companies in our industry based solely on the fact that they’re the biggest, most established, and probably have money to spend. This is not always the most advisable course of action. Your products or services will be of interest to your prospects if they fulfill a need that your prospect has. You will have a very difficult time producing qualified leads and therefore closing sales if your prospect has no need of your products or services.
To do this, you are going to need to ask the right questions of your prospects, and then listen carefully to their answers. Get them talking, and let them talk. When you can get a prospect talking about their needs, you will be able to supply them with ways in which your products or services can fill them. Don’t be afraid to ask open ended questions like “What are the biggest obstacles you are facing right now?” or “if you could change one thing about your current supplier what would it be?”
Of all the advice you could receive on lead generation, this is the one piece that is probably the most important. Finish what you start. Your good intentions will get you up and running, but you may require some support to ensure that you follow them through. There are two things that will help you accomplish this.
- Schedule uninterrupted time in your week to monitor lead generation reports, to plan and implement change. All of our lives are busy, and yours is no different. The way to make sure you have time to follow through on your commitments is to build them into your calendar.
- Find someone to keep you accountable. Your Wardell Advisor can help with this. Schedule a weekly 10 minute conversation with them to talk through your goals and keep you on track. Just knowing that someone is going to ask you how a project is going is often enough motivation to make sure you see it to completion.
- What are your prospects biggest needs or concerns in their business?
- What are the key ways that your products or services fill those needs?
- What are the things that influence your prospects the most?
- What are the biggest objections to your products or services, and how can they be overcome?
- How can you identify time wasters/non-qualified prospects early and move on?
- How can you identify qualified sales ready prospects early and pass them on to sales?
- Who are the decision makers, what are their common titles, how many of them are there?
A system that provides better leads has a vastly improved close percentage. We’ve all been to trade shows and seen fish bowls full of business cards. The enticement is usually a prize of some kind, often one that doesn’t relate to the promoting company’s products or services. These cards are then taken to the sales team, and proudly handed over as leads. In most cases, what this does is create a lot of wasted time, energy, and resources for your sales team. Focus on generating quality leads for your sales team and your conversion rate will increase dramatically!