“We want to be advocates for our clients,” said Dale Vermillion, CEO of Vermillion Consulting Inc., speaking at LeadsCon Las Vegas on Tuesday. “Is your customer looking for price or value? Price is what you pay, value is what you get—and these two things are separate.”
Leads are of no true value to an organization until they convert, he said, noting that companies must prioritize their leads and then properly manage the conversion process. Look at the optimal call times for your sales force, and when leads aren’t converting, consider recycling and redistributing those leads in the organization.
And don’t just think in the now, said Vermillion, who consults in the mortgage industry. Consider future opportunities: Just because you can’t sell to someone now doesn’t’ mean you can’t help them in the future.
Of course, in many cases, leads must be acted upon quickly, particularly for time sensitive products people are searching for online. Nick Hedges, CEO of sales automation software firm Velocify, noted at LeadsCon that often speed to call is essential to making a sale.
“You would be shocked at how slowly most companies call their leads,” he said. “The average call back time is 48 hours—imagine if you walked in to a store and a sales person said they’d get back to you in 2 days!”
Leads are the most perishable good on the planet, Hedges said, noting that a study by Velocify showed that in many cases companies had a 391% better chance of conversion if they called a lead within 60 seconds. “People are often operating in a small window of time. If you call them immediately, they’ll still be doing their research and you can have a conversation. If you want hours or days, good luck trying to get a hold of that person.”
Be persistent when following up on a lead, but don’t harass a prospect, Hedges notes. If you make too few calls you’re leaving money on the table. But, if you make too many, you’ll ultimately just hurt your brand reputation.
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