Sales Qualification Processes: Inquiry vs. Lead
For small to medium sized businesses in particular, lead qualification is vital to sourcing the might be interested clients from the really are interested clients. You might be saying to yourself, “I already know how to qualify leads. I’m already doing this.” If you’re sending every interested party directly into your pipeline with no extra thought, or your sales team is treating basic inquiries like hot leads, you need a sales qualification process. And you need it now.
Sales Qualification Processes: The One-Man Show
When we talk about smaller companies, we could easily be referring to one person running a team or working individually. Freelancers and small business teams can benefit from lead qualification as much as larger businesses. Why? Categorizing leads properly eliminates wasting time on leads that aren’t really interested. If you’ve worked for yourself even a day, you know time is money. Chasing down people who will never convert is tantamount to ripping up a check – so it’s important to be able to qualify leads and sales properly.
A small team’s sales qualification process can be as simple as labeling the strength or interest of the lead within a CMS system. Fortunately, there are fully integrated lead qualification systems out there that make managing leads a breeze (hint for Lead Liaison). The problem is ensuring small businesses recognize the value of – and use – these resources to build a sturdy sales qualification process. Again, not every inquiry is a lead. If you’re a small business owner, better growth for your organization can depend on nailing down the right lead process for your business early on. By the time you wait until you’re larger to get a sales qualification process in place, you might have a tougher job on your hands than you would have if starting earlier.
Sales Qualification Processes: Larger Entities
For larger businesses, the sales qualification problem can have a little more to do with communication between teams. MarketingSherpa tells us that 61% of B2B companies send leads to the sales team without giving sales members any information on the quality of the lead.
This is a problematic practice because sales teams may use the same tactics to approach leads of different qualification levels. Many different kinds of negative results can stem from this. First off, an inquiry that could become a solid lead down the line may be put off by the level of contact or pursuit and decide not to go with your company. If you don’t believe this, try going online and filling out one of those moving company aggregate forms that blast your phone number out to several different movers. Your phone line will suddenly become very – active.
With no qualification or direction, your sales team could also spend time pursuing a lead that seems ready, but isn’t – while neglecting a lead that’s more prepared to close. Lack of proper communication between sales and lead gen divisions of a business is a pretty common thing. Just by having a sales qualification process in place, you can skip the frustration.
Lead Liaison has a powerful suite of sales qualification tools built into our lead management program. Don’t miss out on recording valuable information that could save you time and convert truly interested leads. Take a look at our competitive package plans and let us help you with a system that works for you.