As a VAR Business, you have a ‘Big dream’… big aspiration for your business with a great service or product to offer. You’re working hard, confident and enjoying some success. You must be striving on devising marketing strategies to get new leads. However, what about putting your time and effort to follow up those leads when they come in?
Well, follow-up is an imperative aspect that can dramatically improve your sales. You can do several things to effectively follow up on sales leads generated through your marketing activities, from contacting people quickly to keeping an up-to-date database and continuing to check in with them over time, to measuring results.
Let us have a look at some secrets that when implemented correctly will help you close a lot more sales from your leads that too with higher margins.
Table of Contents
- Understanding different types of leads
- HOT (Leads ready now)
- B (Budget)
- A (Authority)
- N (Need)
- T (Time Frame):
- WARM (Leads that will be ready soon)
- COLD – (Bad leads-Leads that may never be ready)
- How to follow up sales leads
- Prompt response
- Do the testing periodically
- Grab their attention
- How often to follow up on sales leads
Understanding different types of leads
The leads you get from your marketing campaigns can be divided into 3 categories:
HOT (Leads ready now)
To know whether the lead is a hot lead, apply the BANT qualifying system:
Does your prospect have enough money? Is the prospect ready for disposal as soon as the proposal is approved by the management?
Can your prospect make purchase decisions or do they have any authority or person in charge of this?
Does your prospect actually need your products or services?
T (Time Frame):
Is there a specific time frame when your prospect intends to make a purchase?
WARM (Leads that will be ready soon)
This type of lead is critical for your business. Budget or timeline might be the constraints. This type of lead could still be nurtured and might contact you again in due time.
COLD – (Bad leads-Leads that may never be ready)
This type of lead needs to be kept in view and needs further nurturing. It needs strategies, time, skills, effort and tools to be able to reach your outcomes.
How to follow up sales leads
Time is Money: People make purchases when they are ready to purchase. They will not buy anything just because you are ready to sell. In other words, you have to be in front of those who are ready to buy.
Certainly, you need to follow up with them consistently:
- Follow up with warm and even cold-that-may-warm prospects constantly and regularly for an extended time period.
- Have systems and tools for follow-up in place.
Furthermore, try to contact potential customers within an hour of receiving queries. If you delay to follow up with a lead, then your competitor might swoop in and talk to the prospect before you.
Being responsive to prospects quickly and completely simply increases your chances. Remember, just being the first to respond is not enough, providing complete answers to their question(s) quickly is essential. This will help build credibility and trust, and considerably boost their chances of winning the prospect.
Do the testing periodically
Improving your sales lead follow-up process is also an essential aspect and you will be able to improve if you measure. Periodical testing can help you in this regards. Here are some pointers –
- No of sales leads do you get every week
- The proportion of your inbound sales leads that get converted into qualified prospects
- The response time for each sales lead
- The proportion of your inbound sales leads that get converted into customers
You can work on your measurable goals depending on your business and check periodically if you are achieving them. Such testing will help you determine whether you need to set more aggressive goals or examine each element of your process in detail and improve it.
Grab their attention
Get in touch with your contact using various methods to start the conversation. The key in getting your prospect’s attention is to make your follow-up message about the prospect. Rather than making it all about company or yourself, you need to be organized prior to the follow-up conversation. This will show your prospect how concerned you are about their needs and time. Ensure proper communication with your prospects and avoid pestering them. Remember, prospects never like dealing with desperate and impatient people.
How often to follow up on sales leads
- If the prospect never speaks with you or reply to you, then avoid follow-up with them more than 3 times.
- If the prospect doesn’t turn up then it might not be the right time to approach them
- Wait for some time (preferably 1-2 months) and approach them again.
- Repeat 1,2 &3.
Remember, there is no point in relentless follow-up might create a negative impact and you might just end up with a bad reputation and waste of time.
With all above-mentioned steps, you can improve your follow up on your sales leads process. This will help you increase the likelihood of winning the prospect. Smartly using possible communication channels contact the lead professionally to increase the chance of success. The point to consider here is being persistent without pestering. Invest appropriate time to follow up. Furthermore, making use of technology and smart tools will make it easy for you to monitor your prospects.
If you have any further questions, you can mention them in the comments below:
To know how to get back lost leads, read the following article: