Lead qualification is all about determining a particular lead’s likelihood to buy. Qualification should be based on a few scoring factors – meaning, not all leads are created equal so you shouldn’t necessarily treat them as such. You’re bleeding money if you don’t qualify leads.
In qualifying leads, one thing to look at is the likelihood that the client will buy based on your sales team’s interaction with the client or the strength of their interest during initial inquiry. The second thing to look at is how the client matches up with the rest of your sales cycle – or your anticipated time frame in which the lead will become a customer via a purchase.
Lead qualification is not lead conditioning
Qualifying leads isn’t about conditioning them. Not every lead that comes through your pipeline is going to be as good as another. So if your sales team members are instructed to treat all incoming leads equally, you’re actually losing money.
You’re losing money because…
your sales team is putting effort into a potential dead end.
your sales team could be sending your client advertising materials or forwarding them to a particular URL on your website rather than spending time interfacing with them.
you’re setting up an expectation that a client will be heavily paid attention to and courted before the sale closes.
One of the biggest complaints between sales teams and analyst or product teams is disparity in the client’s expectations when they’re being onboarded. If your sales team has spent 30 minutes a day for two weeks or more courting a client for sale – especially for low budget clients – you can bet a converted client is going to expect the same treatment from your team analysts. Does this cost the client money? No. It costs you money and resources.
Where the CRM comes in
When you come up with lead qualification criteria, that criteria has to be applied universally for your entire team. Across the board, sales people need to be rating leads using the same qualifications that are standard to everyone else. Unless you have a CRM that’s robust enough – yet easy to use – for managing your sales qualification process, you’re going to have a hot mess on your hands.
When people come to Lead Liaison looking for help implementing a lead qualification process, every company’s needs are different. Some companies don’t have developmental or advertorial materials they can send to low-interest clients for follow-up. These companies are often either spending too much time on low-interest, ill-qualified leads or just ignoring them altogether – which means when their buying interest is picqued in the future, they might turn toward another company for service. Why would you want to lose a lead you could convert just by regularly staying in touch or sending sales materials?
For some companies, simply starting a company newsletter and maintaining an email list is enough to turn these low-interest leads into buys down the line. We never really know until we can get a good look at what the company has to offer.
If you get me on the phone, I know just the right questions to ask about how to start your lead qualification process and best manage it via CRM. Bigger companies aren’t willing to spend that kind of time on you – but I know that if Lead Liaison does, your CRM implementation and use process will go quickly and easily. We want you to make the most out of our application. Talk to me today about how lead qualifying can stop you from bleeding money – and get you started with a robust CRM that works for your whole team.