The first step to improving outbound lead generation is to better understand pipeline activity.
An analytical approach can help sales managers to create efficiencies in sales rep activities, leading to improved lead generation outcomes.
Three areas where analytics can make the pipeline more efficient:
Reps disqualify leads at a faster rate than they qualify them. The assignment of new leads can be automated based on total current active leads as a ratio of closed leads, and the relative volume of leads compared to other reps.
There should be a manageable quantity of leads in each sales reps’ queue on a timed basis so they can call, qualify and close deals without being overwhelmed.
The “why” of determining which leads are not qualified or worth pursuing is just as important as converting a qualified lead into an opportunity.
Disposition reasons that are clear, accurate and consistent can yield valuable info to fix specific problems. For example, if the reasons show bad data, go back to the vendor and get updated records or a credit. If leads are not in addressable market, then rank the highest such records and suppress them when buying future leads. When there is no current opportunity with prospects, maintain communication (with permission) and incorporate statistical models so you can reach similar prospects earlier in their buying cycles.
Reps need help prioritizing. Analytics can help in sorting, filtering, appending and synthesizing valuable info across prospects, accounts and transactions, and then present actionable information that can be used in a script. For example, we have created an app within Salesforce that combines account data with prospect data to give confidence and talking points to sales reps.
It’s useful to create action lists that can be used to prioritize, assemble and validate actionable info.
So how does this produce predictable, scalable sales growth?
By incorporating analytical methods, you reduce variability and create consistency across all reps – sort of like “making the rest like your best.” This is the biggest benefit to sales managers because reps can then follow what’s proven to work, consistently.
Next, sales reps can make analytics work for them. Any analytics process is only as good as the feedback it gets. By giving timely feedback, results can be improved continuously over time.
Finally, analytics can leverage big data and make it relevant to the reps, at each and every interaction with prospects. Analytics take care of the heavy lifting, so sales teams can focus on achieving sales outcomes.
You can produce scalable sales growth by doing three things: removing variability, providing feedback, and leveraging big data.