Sales managers are often obsessed with the metrics of their sales team members—how many meetings were attended, how many proposals went out, and the number of prospects in each stage of the funnel. And yes, these statistics can be helpful toward identifying issues, however, most sales teams flounder at the top of the funnel.
THREE FACTORS DETERMINE SALES:
- The number of qualified prospects you are engaging
- Average deal size
- The percentage of new prospects that convert to paying customers Increasing any one of these three variables will increase the number of deals closed.
The one thing sales people have 100% control over is where they spend their time. Customarily, prospects begin to casually research a future purchase long in advance before they will be ready to buy. Sales people cannot afford to spend their time with these prospects. They must focus on spending their time with prospects who have already completed their preliminary research, are of sufficient size and are qualified to buy. The faster they can complete the qualification task the more time they can spend on the right prospects - the sales qualified leads (SQL).
Sales people, who get caught up trying to convert prospects not ready to buy, waste a ton of time. They should be spending time with or looking for more qualified prospects. The challenge they face is discerning between qualified and unqualified.
One of the best ways smart companies help their sales teams be more efficient is by designing a nurture program that can be triggered by sales team members. The sales members turn the leads over to marketing who will then methodically follow-up with the prospect, and over time qualify, or disqualify them.
NURTURING SALES LEADS
Nurture track are a sales multiplier. When done well, they can increase sales by 3x. In other words, nurture tracks answer some of the prospect’s most pressing questions and assuaging fear, moving them along in the funnel. Designing a good nurture track takes time, focus and a deep understanding of the prospects who are entering the funnel.
When designing a nurture track, marketers must continually ask one question at each stage, “what does the prospect already know?” The secret is to fill in the gaps in their knowledge while building credibility and rapport. Sales people should be working on closing sales qualified leads instead of converting prospects who are not ready to buy. Install nurture campaigns and consider the three factors needed to determine a sale, and you will begin to see results and an increase in sales productivity.
Learn more about how inbound marketing nurtures prospects, increasing sales team productivity.