Lead Response Management - Best Practices

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  • http://hbr.org/2011/03/the-short-life-of-online-sales-leads/ar/1http://www.matrixintegratedmarketing.com/MIT.pdfhttp://www.insidesales.com/images/InsideSales_MultiMedia_Study.pdfhttp://www.leadresponsemanagement.org/lrm_studyhttp://www.insidesales.com/images/aa-isp-2011-response-audit.pdfhttp://www.leads360.com/download/webinars/leverage-differences-b2b-b2c-sales/http://docs.cdn.marketo.com/definitive-guide-to-lead-nurturing.pdf
  • Lead Response Management - Best Practices

    1. 1. SmartZip Predictive Marketing Lead Response Management A Compilation of Best Practices Rajeev Kalavar
    2. 2. A Familiar Story? “Imagine walking into Nordstrom's to look at shoes, only to be shoved out the door, and told you‟ll be contacted in 24 to 48 hours” “Now, imagine this happens to all Nordstrom's customers, 50% of whom will NEVER be contacted” Prospects have filled your online web-form and shown similar intent How are YOU treating your online leads?
    3. 3. “Lead conversion is determined 57% by lead quality, and 43% by sales process” - Leads360 Research So, you‟ve got a great lead-gen program generating quality leads Is your sales process ready?
    4. 4. BEST PRACTICE # 1 IT‟S ALL ABOUT SPEED Lead Response Management Strategy and tactics for your sales process to scale conversions
    5. 5. Best Practice # 1 • Attempt to contact the lead right away – Measure your response time in minutes and seconds, not hours or days • Integrate real-time lead-gen within your CRM system – Get notified instantly when a lead is captured – Instant visibility within your call center will ensure your inside sales team can act on it within 5 minutes • Appoint an „off-hours‟ lead owner – If a lead arrives off-hours, you probably cannot call up right away – Immediately acknowledge the lead with a personalized email. Let them know you‟ll call first thing during business hours. But acknowledge within 5 minutes – Enable SMS alerts as a backup to your email alerts. If you are like most, you will respond to an SMS faster than to an email! Odds of contacting a lead increase by 100x if attempted within 5 min v/s 30 min Odds of converting a lead increase by 21x if attempted within 5 minv/s 30 min Contact your leads immediately. First- attempt-to-contact should be within 5 minutes The SmartTargeting system integrates with leading CRM systems like SalesForce, Sugar CRM, Marketo, and Leads360
    6. 6. Effectiveness of Lead Response Times • MIT/Kellogstudy conducted in 2007 to answer this very question • Based on lead response data of 24 B2C and 14 B2B remote sales companies • 1,060,913 B2C and 126,695 B2B observations, totaling N = 1,187,608, over a 12 month period “How does lead response time affect ability to contact, and convert an online lead?”
    7. 7. Contact/Qualify by Response Time (Minutes) • Odds of contacting a lead increase by 100x if attempted within 5 min v/s 30 min • Odds of converting a lead increase by 21x if attempted within 5 minv/s 30 min Response times to new sales leads should be measured in minutes and seconds, not hours or days - 2007 MIT/Kellog Study
    8. 8. Response Time and Conversion Why is response time highly correlated with contact and lead conversion? • You Know Where They Are – At their computer desk, probably right near their phone! – If you call them immediately, they answer. If you wait, they move on to something else, often away from their phone • You Contact them at the Highest Point of Interest or Need – People search the Internet because they want things now. Interest and need wane quickly. – A few days later they often don‟t even remember they submitted a lead. – Immediacy of response hits the respondent at their highest point of interest or need • The “Wow Effect” – The first impression of “Wow, that was fast! That‟s impressive.”First impressions continue to have a strong influence on trust and relationships – Customers feel that the sales representative must be really on top of things, and that is the kind of person and company they want servicing their account
    9. 9. Food For Thought • “How significant is a 100x increase in contact ratios on the value of those leads?” • “How much effect would a 21x increase in qualification have on the overall sales revenue of your company?” Your lead-gen program has generated 500 leads Leads will convert. The only question is – with whom. Don‟t let your marketing $$ line your competitor‟s coffers There is NO excuse. Implement the „5 min rule‟
    10. 10. BEST PRACTICE # 2 BE PERSISTENT IN FOLLOW-UP Lead Response Management Strategy and tactics for your sales process to scale conversions
    11. 11. Best Practice # 2 • Establish a disciplined phone follow-up schedule – The reality is, you will never be able to contact all leads in 5 minutes – On average, it takes 7 dials before a successful connect – Define a schedule over 2 weeks, with a plan to dial at least 7 times • Time of day, and day of week matter – Ensure your calling schedule aligns with the best time of day, and best days of the week – Both have significant impact, with time of day having greater impact of the two • Place leads in a nurture flow after 7 attempts – Do not discard leads, but nurture them for at least 6 months Time of Day Contact Besttime: 4-6 PM Worsttime: 11AM - 12PM Qualify Besttime: 8-9 AM, 4-5 PM Worsttime: 1-2 PM Follow-up at least 7 times before giving up on contacting that lead Day of Week Bestdays - Wednesday and Thursday Worstday - Tuesday An agent has a 95% chance of making contact after 7 attempts
    12. 12. Sample Follow-up Schedule CONTACT WEEK 1 WEEK 2 M Tu W Th F M Tu W Th F 8.00 AM 9.00 AM Ph Ph 4.00 PM 5.00 PM Ph Ph 5.00 PM 6.00 PM @ Ph Ph Ph QUALIFY WEEK 1 WEEK 2 M Tu W Th F M Tu W Th F 8.00 AM 9.00 AM Ph Ph Ph Ph 4.00 PM 5.00 PM @ Ph Ph 7 follow-up attempts Focus on Wed, Th, Fri, alternating between best time slots
    13. 13. Contact/Qualify by Time of Day • Contact – Besttime: 4-6 PM – Worsttime: 11AM - 12PM • Qualify – Besttime: 8-9 AM, 4-5 PM – Worsttime: 1-2 PM A rep has a 164% better chance qualifying a lead at the best time, over the worst A rep has a 114% greater chance of making contact at the best time, over the worst - 2007 MIT/Kellog Study
    14. 14. Contact/Qualify by Day of the Week • Bestdays - Wednesday and Thursday • Worstday - Tuesday • Fridayis great for contacting, but worstfor qualifying/converting You are 50% more likely to contact and qualify on Wednesday (best) than on Tuesday (worst) - 2007 MIT/Kellog Study
    15. 15. Don‟t Give Up too Early For contactable leads, an agent has a 95% chance of making contact after 7 attempts, v/s only 39% on the first attempt -- Leads360 Research Diminishing returns after 7th attempt-to-contact
    16. 16. BEST PRACTICE # 3 TRACK TO A FAULT Lead Response Management Strategy and tactics for your sales process to scale conversions
    17. 17. Best Practice #3 • Tracking: Thoroughly track contact attempts, or you won't know how long it's taking to make the first one – If you don't know your average speed, be sure it's not within 5 minutes • Discipline: Diligently monitor and manage against key metrics – Hold your sales people accountable if they don‟t track against the 5 min rule – Build a trend line for each key metric and track daily Track thoroughly. You can‟t improve what you don‟t measure Key metrics • speed-to-first- contact attempt • speed-to-contact • number of contact attempts • speed-to-qualify
    18. 18. Tracking Tips – Key Metrics • Speed-to-first-contact-attempt V/S contact ratio • Speed-to-first-contact-attempt V/S conversion ratio • Speed-to-contact V/S conversion ratio • Speed-to-conversion V/s conversion ratio Build a trend line for each metric and chart against contact and conversion ratios As key-metrics trend lower, you should see improvements in contact and conversion ratios Key charts • How many leads you receive each week? • How long it takes you to respond to each lead? • What percentage of your inbound leads are converted into qualified prospects? • What percentage of your inbound leads are converted into customers? Do you know
    19. 19. Tracking Tips – Useful Funnel States States Meaning New New lead has arrived Contact Attempt 1 1st attempt made Contact Attempt 2 2nd attempt made Contact Attempt 3 3rd attempt made Contact Attempt 4 4th attempt made Contact Attempt 5 5th attempt made Contact Attempt 6 6th attempt made Contact Attempt 7 7th attempt made Nurture Couldn‟t make contact, added to nurture flow Contacted – Requested Callback Contacted the customer, has scheduled a callback Qualified-Appointment Set Qualified lead - Appointment set Qualified-Appointment Confirmed Qualified lead- Appointment confirmed for next day Qualified-Appointment Cancelled Qualified lead - Appointment canceled Closed-Sold Successful close Closed-Disqualified Disqualified (define reason codes) Closed-Not Interested Not viable – Explicitly stated no interest Closed-Do Not Call Not viable – Requested to never be called Closed-Other Not viable – For various reasons (define reason codes) Closed-Canceled Not viable - Canceled before system could be installed The following state definitions are a great starting point to improve tracking and reporting within you sales funnel
    20. 20. BEST PRACTICE # 4 NURTURE, NURTURE, NURTURE! Lead Response Management Strategy and tactics for your sales process to scale conversions
    21. 21. Best Practice # 4 What it is • Lead nurturing is about communicating with your prospects to build relationshipsand trustin a way that is both consistentand relevant What it is not • Sending out an e-newsletter on a semi-regular basis • Randomly calling leads every six weeks to see if they are ready to buy • Blasting your entire database with a new case study • Offering content that promotes your company‟s products and services and does not take into account your prospects‟ interests or needs at their stage of buying Up to 95% of qualified prospects on your web site may not be ready yet to talk with a sales rep, but as many as 70% of them will eventually buy a product from you - or your competitors --Lead Gen for the Complex Sale Most new leads are not yet ready to buy. Make sure you‟re there when they are
    22. 22. Nurture Tips • Nurture all leads who visit your website • Your nurture plan should touch the lead multiple times over the duration of the buying cycle • Email can be your primary nurture media, but don‟t just rely on email and phone • Use multiple media including online advertising, postcards, etc. • Be sensitive to your prospect‟s schedule and attention span • Make your content easy to digest • Make content valuable, not self-promotional • Put your audience‟s interests ahead of your own • Use sales and marketing emails as a chance to get personal -- not pushy – You can use HTML emails to nurture leads – Follow up corporate emails should be more personal, such as text-only emails from an actual sales rep
    23. 23. Nurture Tips – Content Development • Content that someone finds relevant changes as they move through the process • Classify leads as Cold, Warm and Hot, depending on where they are in the buying cycle • Define content based on this classification • COLD (not yet ready): Use educational pieces & best practices during the early awareness • WARM (considering): Use industry-oriented pieces (trends & reports, guides, etc.) as prospects start looking for a solution • HOT (in-market): Use solution-oriented and company- focused materials for those in an active buying cycle
    24. 24. Nurture Tips - Timing • Get the frequency of communication right • As a general guideline, contacting prospects more than once a week is too much and less than once a month is not enough Day 1- Follow-up with introductory email Day 10 - Email offering new content related to first web site activity Day 15 - Personal email from sales rep Day 30 - Email best practices whitepaper, augment with a postcard offer Day 45 - Call from sales rep to „check in‟ Day 60 - Email promoting webinar series, augment with a postcard offer Day 75 - Personal email from sales rep offering a product/service demo Day 85 - Call from sales rep to schedule in-person meeting Day 90 – Successful close Day 1 to 90 - Targeted online advertising for the entire duration Example: A lead nurture plan for a 3 month buying cycle may look like this:
    25. 25. The Cost of Poor Nurture Bottom-line: Nurture is crucial to increasing conversion 918% ROI with a nurture plan in place, v/s 270% without lead nurture -- Leads360 Research
    26. 26. BEST PRACTICE # 5 NO LEAD LEFT BEHIND Lead Response Management Strategy and tactics for your sales process to scale conversions
    27. 27. Best Practice # 5 • Leads generated through a predictive marketing system inherently are early in the buying process • Through advanced algorithms, they have been identified as having a high propensity to buy – they are extremely high quality – Give these leads a higher lead score, relative to other leads in the same class • Use field sales to build a relationship with these targets to gain mind-share before your competitors – You have a significant advantage over your competition -- you have identified leads they don‟t yet know exist – Drive home the advantage Don‟t ignore a predictive lead because it doesn‟t „look‟ in-market Predictive marketing A combination of statistics, advanced math, and big data to identify targets with a high propensity to buy your product Leads generated via SmartTargetinghave a 200%-300% higher probability to buy in the next 6-12 months v/s leads generated from standard lead gen programs
    28. 28. Predictive Target Follow-up Tips SmartTargeting lead capture flow generates 5 types of inbound leads • Predicted target – in top 20%, all with addresses • Web – Target has shown intent, provided address (no phone/email) – Target has shown intent, provided phone/email – Target has shown intent, provided phone/email, and requested a consult (in-market) • Direct Dial – Target calls hotline without coming to the site – direct dial to call center Type Nurture Category Customer Actions Predicted Target Cold Canvass via door hangers, collateral drop-off No Phone/Email Luke-warm Canvass via door hangers, collateral drop-off Phone/Email Warm Real-time call center response Canvass via door hangers, collateral drop-off Personal email from sales rep Start nurture flow Direct Dial Hot Ensure call center pick-up Request Consult Hot Real-time call center response Canvass via door hangers, collateral drop-off Personal email from sales rep
    29. 29. SUMMARY Lead Response Management Strategy and tactics for your sales process to scale conversions
    30. 30. You‟re Not Alone! • 55.3% of the 159 companies never responded • Of companies that responded: – 40.4 hour average to initial response time! – Only 2.6average response attempts • Of companies that responded by phone: – 65.4 hour average initial phone response time – 31.0% responded by phone within 24 hours – Only 1.4% responded by phone within 5 minutes! • Of companies that responded by email: – 40.1% responded by email within 24 hours – Only 2.8% responded by email within 5 minutes! AA-ISP Response Audit (Jun „11) - 55.3% of the 159 companies never responded to leads
    31. 31. BOTTOM-LINE “Lead conversion is determined 57% by lead quality, and 43% by sales process” - Leads360 Research You‟ve got a great lead-gen program generating quality leads. Ensure your sales process is ready!
    32. 32. Best Practices Summary 1. IT‟S ALL ABOUT SPEED – Contact your leads immediately. First-attempt-to-contact should be within 5 minutes 2. BE PERSISTENT IN FOLLOW-UP – Follow-up at least 7 times before giving up on contacting that lead 3. TRACK TO A FAULT – Track thoroughly. You can‟t improve what you don‟t measure 4. NURTURE, NURTURE, NURTURE! – Most new leads are not yet ready to buy. Make sure to be there when they are 5. NO LEAD LEFT BEHIND – Don‟t ignore a predictive lead because it doesn‟t „look‟ in-market
    33. 33. APPENDIX Sales Process Checklist, References, Additional Statistics, etc.
    34. 34. Sales Process Checklist • I have lead-source integration with my CRM system • My call center team gets notified as soon as a lead is captured • Someone in my team is responsible for sales process tracking and monitoring – ____________ manages my lead response process • Someone responds immediately when a lead comes in after-hours – ____________ manages my off-hours lead response • I get SMS notifications for all leads as a backup to email
    35. 35. Sales Process Checklist • I respond to every lead immediately – My response time is within __ • I have a disciplined follow up process – Average # follow up calls is ___ • I track my leads diligently – How many leads do you receive each week ____ – How long does it takes you to respond to each lead ____ – % of your leads converted into qualified prospects ____ – % of your leads converted into customers ____ • I track first-attempt-to-contact – My avg. FATC is ___ – My avg. FATC-to-contact ratio is ___ – My avg. FATC-to-qualify ratio is ___
    36. 36. Sales Process Checklist • I have a nurture process – My product‟s buy cycle is ___ months – Average # emails sent per lead ___ • My nurture process is more than a monthly email • I classify my leads based on where they are in the buying cycle • My nurture content is unique to each classification • I rate my predictive leads higher than other leads • I canvass my predictive leads when I don‟t have an email/phone
    37. 37. Research and References • The Short Life of Online Sales Leads – James Oldroyd, Harvard Business Review, Mar 2011 • How Much Time Do You Have Before Web‐Generated Leads Go Cold – MarketingSherpa’s Business‐to‐Business Demand Generation 4th Annual Summit 2007 • Multimedia Response Study – David Elkington, James Oldroyd, , Mar 2010 • The Lead Response Management Study – Insidesales.com, Mar 2011 • Response Audit of American Association of Inside Sales Professionals – AA-ISP Leadership Summit, June 2011 • What Planet are you on – How B2B and B2C Sales and Marketing Differ – Jeff Solomon, Founder and SVP Leads360 • The Definitive Guide to Lead Nurturing – A Marketo Workbook
    38. 38. Contact/Qualify by Response Time (Hours) • The odds of contacting a lead decrease by 10xin the 1st hour • Odds of qualifying that lead decrease by 6xafter the first hour - 2007 MIT/Kellog Study - 2007 MIT/Kellog Study
    39. 39. Multimedia Response Effectiveness • 90% of lead conversions via phone first/email second • In B2B, respond first by phone, second by email for best results • Respond as fast as possible – media used is about the same • In B2C, it‟s all about speed. The faster you contact the consumer after they show interest, better your chances B2B - first 16 minutes B2C – first 16 minutes

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