The sales cycle has changed in the last decade or so. Today most businesses are online. The Covid-19 pandemic has compelled the rest to bring their businesses online. And a large part of the sales process is also done online.
The internet and mobile proliferation have made your customers much more informed today. They also research and acquire information about your company and products from various sources. Salespeople are no longer the gatekeeper of information. As per Gartner, when considering a purchase, B2B buyers spend 27 percent of their time researching. In the same study, 77 percent of them classify their purchases as “complex or difficult.”
Customer expectations have also changed. They want your Salespeople to solve their problems, not sell the products/services. They want to understand how your product or service will help them. And they want personalized solutions specific to their problems.
This means it is getting harder and harder for your salespeople to get “foot in the door” or speed up and close a deal. But, you can accelerate the ‘path to purchase’ by engaging with your leads and understanding their needs.
That’s why lead management and lead nurturing are critical to build trust and make a prospect buy from you.
Here are some of the lead management best practices to help you convert more leads into customers:
1. Carefully define your buyer persona- Your product/service is the perfect solution for someone out there. The better you get to know your ideal buyer, the better you can find it.
If you know who the ideal buyer of your product/service is, you can plan and focus all your efforts on finding them. And the more qualified that lead is, the easier it is to convert them.
Steps to build a buyer persona-
2. Meticulously plan your nurturing programs- Not all leads will convert instantly. You need to nurture them so that when they are ready to buy, they buy from you. Build a lead scoring system to categorize leads based on their potential for conversions. Create nurturing programs for each lead category to effectively drive them through your sales funnel. Pass it on to your Sales Teams when the lead is ready.
3. Get leads from your leads- Lead generation is an expensive process. Now not all leads will convert into business. But they may know someone who is in need of your product/service. The same holds for leads that have converted. Yes, ask for referrals.
4. Choose a good lead management software- The software will be the core of your lead management process. And it should do all the things you need to convert leads into customers.
5. Drive collaboration across your business- Conversions are not just a Sales responsibility. All your teams must come together to help Sales convert leads into customers. The Sales Team must be armed with all information on leads to know them better.
You can significantly improve your lead conversions and sales by taking the best practices-driven approach towards lead management. But effective lead management must begin with a robust strategy. We have written an eBook to help small business owners like you build a powerful lead management strategy that drives conversions and ensures that nothing falls through the cracks. You can download it from the link below.