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You walk into a shoe shop, browsed their shoes and spotted a nice pair of boots. You think to yourself: “Ah these are nice. I want to buy them.” Next thing you know you’re waiting for a sales assistant to check whether they have the boots in your size. There are no available sales assistants and the ones you can see appear to be distracting themselves with unimportant tasks. You’re waiting for 10 minutes until you walk out hoping to find those same shoes down the street.
At this point, you’re deflated, disappointed and angry. And you are most definitely not going back to that shop for a while. Isn’t it amazing how frustrating is it to be left waiting when your ready to buy something, even when it is only 10 minutes?
Unfortunately, this is everyday practice when it comes to how online leads are treated. Massive amounts of leads are being generated, seduced to browse and discover content on sites so that they ultimately leave sales enquiries. But only a tiny amount of them get the treatment and engagement they deserve and need to convert into sales.
Investing in your lead management leaves an incredible opportunity for businesses to crush their competition.
We’ll take a look at three areas you can focus on immediately:
1) Number of times you follow up with a lead
Forbes reported that on average sales representatives call a lead 1.3 times before giving up. In other words, if someone doesn’t respond after the second point of contact, most people give up and assume the lead is cold.
However, Insidesales and the Harvard Business Review (‘HBR’) published a three year research piece on lead response management to show how a lead should be handled:
The HBR actually discovered that you shouldn’t stop after the first or second point of communication. In fact, the odds of making contact increases to 90% when 6 call attempts are made. Therefore, just because nobody picks up the phone the first time it doesn’t mean the lead is not interested.
So why is this a problem if sales representatives are only making on average 1.3 call attempts?
You could be losing up to half of your pipeline which means losing out on potential sales!
If for every sale it took 6 call attempts, business owners would spend most of their time and money chasing leads and not running their business. Is there anything we can do to increase the chance of making contact the first time?
2) Time and day you try to make contact
The HBR also conducted research on the best time and day to contact a lead. The research suggests the best day to make contact with a with a lead is on Wednesday and Thursday. In fact, Thursday has a 49% better success rate compared to Tuesday which was the worst day to call people.
The time of day you call a lead and the size of the impact that has on conversions is also surprising. The research showcased that 8am-9am and 4pm-5pm were the best times to contact a lead resulting in the highest contact rate. More specifically, 4pm-5pm achieved the highest success rate and saw a 164% difference in success rate compared to contacting a lead at 1pm-2pm.
A 164% difference in success rate is huge and shouldn’t be ignored. Imagine if this statistic was in relation to revenue and calling between 4pm-5pm boosted your revenue by 164% compared to 1pm-2pm. Sounds good, doesn’t it?
Is this coincidence or is there a legitimate reason why Thursday is deemed a better day to contact a lead compared to Tuesday?
It’s impossible to say because every business is unique but starting with data point is likely to give you an uplift in results. Either way, looking at data, even if it is your own, to understand the best time to call a lead will increase your chances of hitting your sales goals for this month.
But what will have the biggest impact on our conversion rates?
3) How quickly you respond to your leads
Research on response times was conducted to see whether responding within 5 minutes varied from responding in 10 minutes. It found that there is a 400% decrease in the odds of qualifying a lead if a response is made within 5 minutes compared to 10 minutes. Furthermore, the odds of qualifying a lead in 5 minutes versus 30 minutes drop 21 times.
What the HBR research has highlighted is that lead response management requires its own focus with the data suggesting you can see a vast uplift in your sales conversions by employing best practices in the way you handle your leads.
Even though it seems incredibly simple to be able to follow up within 5 minutes every lead in practice it is not realistic because resources and processes to achieve this do not exist.
However, what if there was a solution?
At Twigdoo we want to help businesses perfect the way they treat leads and ultimately make more sales. If you’d like to improve your lead qualification then start your 30 day free trial.
Our service offers fast response times, persistent follow ups, engaging conversation and equal attention to every lead.