Manage Thy Leads

It all starts with leads! They are an integral part of the sales cycle. From the moment we get in touch with a lead till the time we convert it, the journey needs to be smooth and hassle free. It becomes imperative to manage your leads well to strengthen the sales pipeline and hit your targets. So here are some pointers for improving your lead management process.

Define a lead:
This is the first step. There needs to be a process in place to qualify a lead from a prospect. Research shows that more than 75% of leads sent to sales reps are not actively worked on. The reason, most of the times being that the lead was not rightly qualified. The parameters while defining a lead can be as diverse as the present requirement of the prospect, timeline to engage, budget allocation, etc. If the right qualification is done for a lead and then it is passed on to the sales team, it becomes much easier to crack it, and saves a lot of time in the sales cycle.

Use CRM tools and use them well:
CRM tools are a very effective way to track the source of a lead and disseminate information. It’s very effective in finding out what is working and what is not, based on the nature of the lead, time of contact etc. CRM tools effectively help in reducing data entry time, reducing manual errors and speeding up the lead qualification process.

Tracking is king:
When leads contact us, it becomes essential to know where they came from. Analytics can give you a heads up on the incoming user behavior, the countries/cities where they are coming from, the referral source which brought them to your website, etc. Tracking the breadcrumbs tells a lot about your leads, and eventually tells us what is working and what is not.
Leads with effective management gives us enhanced results
Strike while the iron is hot:
Be fast, be aggressive. It is seen statistically that leads convert faster when you contact them within 24-48 hours of them showing interest in your product or service. However, make sure you do not use a template or auto responder to contact the prospect. Customization is the key. A personal phone call or a well crafted email can help you break through the deal.

Measure and improvise:
This can vary in organizations, and a lot depends on the campaigns you run for your target audience. We all want results but there are certain parameters that can be used to measure the present success rate of the efforts, and then improvisation kicks in.

Close the loop:
Lastly look at the data, analyze, hold regular meetings with your team and close the loop. This process works in reviewing your efforts, results, and defining the way ahead.

If you have any tips or suggestions to manage your leads, feel free to share them via comments below!


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