Qualify Creatively to Generate Sales, Not Leads

By | June 22, 2022

Anyone who sells for a living wants more leads — lots and lots of leads. So, in companies large and small, the marketing department turns on the lead generation machine (more advertising, trade shows, sales events, etc.) and the salespeople start banging on doors. Of course, in a small business, the marketing and sales departments are often just one person, who may also be the only employee, and so the roles of marketing and sales must be efficient.

All too often salespeople are chasing bad leads — tire kickers, buyers, people attending a trade show just to snag freebies, people collecting literature, and those who don’t want to buy or can’t buy anything for a variety of reasons. The goal of lead generation is to generate qualified leads (with an emphasis on the “qualified” part) so that the time and effort put into the sales process is focused on the prospects most likely to make a purchase.

Unproductive leads can be minimized, but certainly not eliminated, by using positioning statements in the marketing strategy and asking probing questions about the prospect’s true interest or ability to buy what you’re selling. It is not necessary to ask “in person”; Your advertising can also ask these questions, often in very subtle but meaningful ways.

  • An investment firm advertisement says, “If your portfolio is more than $500,000…”

  • A home improvement company’s website asks prospects to fill in a series of blanks on a proposed project before committing to sending a salesperson.

  • At a trade show, an industrial equipment salesman takes a prospect’s contact information and asks a series of qualifying questions to determine whether to make an appointment after the trade show.

  • An employee training company asks questions to determine how many employees a prospect needs to offer either a “distance learning” or an “in-person” training package.

  • A daycare center will clearly state the acceptable ages of children and then ask for the ages of a prospect’s children before offering a free tour.

Sure, if you ask to respectfully qualify prospects you won’t get as many responses, but you’ll waste less time chasing down unqualified prospects, and those who do qualify are more likely to genuinely care about your product and in the business able to buy it or service. The net result of getting better qualified leads is that sales reps spend their time more productively, selling more and looking for fewer customers. Isn’t a small group of qualified leads better than a ton worse?

Thanks to Larry Galler | #Qualify #Creatively #Generate #Sales #Leads

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