Don't do these things:
- Increase your Google ad spend
- Sign up for another trade show
- Go out and purchase lists
- Fire your agency
- Hire a new agency
- Tell yourself "this was a bad week for me to quit drinking."
Instead, stop and ask, "what do you consider a lead?"
Often marketing thinks that lead flow is just fine -- there are plenty of people hitting the web site, filling out conversion forms, attending webinars. And those names are dutifully passed to sales, which then carefully and thoughtfully ignores them. Or perhaps there are so few leads coming in a day you could personally call each of them and have a lovely conversation about their family and the stock market before the next response comes in.
Do you know who you're looking for? One of the hardest, and in retrospect, funniest, conversations I ever had with a sales director was what kind of leads they wanted to talk with. After some exaggerated hand waving about "CXOs from Fortune 500 companies," I asked him how many of those people he sells to.
I stood at the white board and asked the question in a different way.
"You are grading me -- marketing -- on how well I deliver qualified leads to you. How do I get an A?"
He blinked and said, "Get me better leads."
"Great. What's a better lead look like?"
Book a conference room. Bring in plenty of coffee. Distribute this agenda in advance to all the participants:
AGENDA -- Marketing and Sales Meeting to Discuss Increase Lead Volume
1. Sales to discuss the type of person they'd like to talk to using the following criteria.
- size of company
- role in the company
- primary pain point
- role in the buying process
2. Discuss the process companies go through to buy. How long is the cycle? What are the steps? Obstacles? Typical objections? Proof points needed?
3. Marketing to confirm criteria and to come back with a marketing plan for new lead acquisition
Once you've agreed with sales on what the target customer looks like, you can apply this to your current database, segmenting by the various criteria so you can create a content plan that maps to the needs of each of your prospective customers.
Then, get together monthly to review how many leads from each cohort you've been able to generate and deliver to sales. Need to rank and prioritize the leads for sales? Check out this post on lead scoring. Want to hold back leads until they are more sales ready? See this article on lead nurturing.
There are a variety of tools you can use to figure out how many leads you need to fill the sales funnel to enable your sales colleagues to make quota. Want a copy of one? Email me at steve (at) 28marketing.com