Turning Contacts into Leads, Opportunities and Deals – An Introduction
An effective sales environment is cultivated by the two most important factors of the industry working in unity: solid, regular lead generation and an efficiently functioning sales team. It is not an either/or situation, as without sales leads, knowledge, experience, or even sales skills become ineffectual. Similarly, the best leads in the world are almost useless without an efficient team following up on them.
For the purpose of this blog, however (and those to follow in the series), we will focus on the first factor – leads.
Leads are the lifeblood of any sales department… more specifically, leads that can be qualified are the lifeblood because they turn into opportunities and, ultimately, sales. The processes, skills and experience that are applied to these little, golden nuggets of opportunity will dictate how much business will be created. However, before any of that can happen, the value of the lead itself must always be clearly understood.
Recognising the value of a lead…
The value of a lead, intrinsically, is the effort and thus opportunity cost that is involved in acquiring it.
Initially, a lead may not always be understood or valued for what it is. A conversation in a pub or at a social gathering with a bombastic competitor who lets slip some information about a deal they are working on might potentially go unnoticed. Similarly, an article in a newspaper that suggests a business expansion into an area where you have a product might not immediately be labelled as a lead. However, both of those pieces of information do, in fact, represent leads, which may or may not develop into business opportunities.
The ability to recognise those potential leads is of paramount importance and is a skill that should be actively cultivated.
There are some salespeople that are naturally very good at recognising leads, following them up assiduously and – more often than not – successfully converting them. If you have a member like that on your team, treasure them for the priceless gems that they are. Unfortunately, many salespeople are often just waiting for a lead to present itself in the form of a clearly defined business opportunity before leaping into their gloriously productive sales mode.
The question that needs to be referred back to on a regular basis is: ‘How do we handle these differing sales archetypes in order to get the maximum advantage from their personalities and skills?’ In some cases, partnering with a lead generation company during these developmental phases can be very beneficial.
Partnering with salesleadgen.com to your advantage…
Working with a solid lead generation company will enable the good sales manager or director to get the very best out of his or her team in a range of ways – many of which we will be exploring in depth in upcoming blogs.
As we have alluded to above, not only must the lead be provided by your partner, it must also be understood internally to create benefit, and that takes good management. The Sales leader in any organisation must be able to anoint the worthy with the quality of lead to which they both aspire and deserve.
Understanding the importance of leads, partnering with the right lead generation organisation and managing the leads effectively will buy you a competitive advantage, which makes it a worthwhile investment any day of the year.