Converting Leads into Customers (E)

Sales Training - Convert leads to salesAre you guilty of investing a whole lot of energy and resources into generating leads for your business, only to allow them to go to waste, because you do not act correctly to convert them into customers? As simplistic as this may seem, the only way to ensure that you take advantage of all the leads, which come your way is as follows:

You must be:

  • Logical
  • Methodical
  • Systematic
  • Have a repeatable daily routine
  • Systematic, to ensure sufficient follow through, until the deal is done

This simplistic approach will see you convert a far higher percentage of your clients into customers.

How do you currently handle one of your most valuable possessions – Your Leads?

I see so many organisations wasting resources to gather leads by:

  • Investing into expensive marketing campaigns
  • Attending expos
  • Using appointment generating companies
  • Attending networking events
  • Using Social media campaigns
  • Pay per click campaigns on Google
  • Email marketing campaigns
  • Search engine optimisation
  • etc.

Too many organizations allow leads to go to waste, because they do not have a methodical system that supports them to follow-through with these leads until the deal is done. It is the saddest thing to observe sales people, who are doing a great job gathering leads, at great expense, only to see them go to waste, due to their poor approach towards handling them.

Storing, recalling and using your leads

What database or CRM (Customer Relations Management) System do you utilise to store your leads, so that you can easily mine and follow-through with them, until they are new customers. Unless you have a powerful system that reminds you to follow-through effectively with every lead, until closed. Leads will continue to fall through the cracks. As you neglect to follow-through, sufficiently with leads, where you find ways to add meaningful value to your future customers, the leads will get colder and colder and they will eventually do business with your competitors.

If either you or your organisation are guilty of this, then it is time to take corrective action. It is time to develop a repeatable system that will support you take advantage of all the leads that come your way, while they are still hot.

Getting Started

The simplest way to start ensuring that leads do not fall through the cracks, is to develop a system that supports you to measure your Conversion ratio, on an ongoing basis.

“Whatever gets Measured, Gets Done”

Action Idea

  • Start by measuring your current conversion ratio
    • Based on all the leads, which crossed your desk over the last year – How many of them have you converted into customers?

Use your Conversion Ratio to make things even Better

Now that you have a starting point and a ratio, which indicates how you are doing in respect of converting all the leads you receive into customers, you can begin to try a few methods to support you to improve this.

Remember that all progress requires change, but not all change results in the progress you desire.

  • Create a systematic approach towards handling leads
  • Set a time frame between follow-up telephone calls and emails
  • Use an automated system to remind you to make the calls and send the emails
  • Try to ensure that you are adding some sort of value, when you call your leads to follow-through
  • Try not to be an interruption – find innovative ways of adding value to each future customer, on an ongoing basis
    • Send out free eBooks that highlight what you can do for your future customers
    • Send them gifts with low commercial value, like a book you have written, a coffee mug with their name on it or a photo of them in a picture frame.
    • Send them industry specific intelligence
    • Send them birthday wishes or wishes for special occasions
    • Invite your leads to networking events you have arranged
    • Arrange your own networking events
      • Create strategic business alliances with businesses, who have a similar customer profile to your own
      • To reduce costs of networking events, hold joint events with your strategic business partners
    • Invite them to join you for meals, drinks etc.

Remember that your business and the markets you serve are different, so you will have to explore your own circumstances and uncover effective ways to support your leads, until they become customers.

Action Idea:

Using some of the ideas above and thinking specifically about your business and the markets you serve, start to develop your system emetic approach to ensure that all leads are handled properly. y longer.

Develop a:

  • Repeatable system
  • Create a daily routine
  • Schedule time daily to carry out follow-through activities

Your Repeatable Recipe

Once you have created your systematic daily recipe, which will support you and your sales team to follow-through effectively, it is time to document it and to train your sales team how to use it. As you introduce the new system, it is crucial that you keep measuring each individual’s progress. Measure their conversion ration on a weekly and monthly basis. As you measure each individual’s progress, you can continue to evaluate the recipe.

Keep measuring and making incremental improvements to your recipe, until you see the positive changes you want. As you keep polishing your system, you are effectively creating the perfect recipe for success, or for converting the maximum number of leads into long-term customers.

Action Idea:

For your new system to be effective, it is crucial that you train your sales team to know how to be on the lookout for any buying signals, which your future customer may show. No matter how powerful your system may be for tracking and following-through, with leads, you will struggle to convert them into customers, if your sales team members do not know when to ask for the sale.

The time needed is worth the effort

I know that the developing a powerful sales process or recipe, which supports you to follow-through with all the leads you receive is tough. I believe that the time you invest into this endeavor will be well worth the effort. As start to see your sales team convert more and more leads into customers, you will quickly forget the time and effort you invested into this crucial part of your business. When you build a repeatable process for converting as many leads as possible, into customers, your business and sales success becomes a certainty.