Effectively responding to a lead
Generating business leads is one thing – the challenge really begins when you need to convert those prospects into sales.
One thing to consider is where your leads have come from – in today’s world, your customers are highly likely to have come in as an internet lead – and as well as being an inexpensive way of generating leads, they also come with another benefit – the fact that these are delivered to you at the exact point that the customer is making their buying decision.
The need for speed
By filling in an online form, the prospect will anticipate a speedy response to their request whilst they are still in the buying mindset. The longer you take to respond to their request, the less chance you’ll have of converting that sale.
By reaching out and engaging with a prospective customer quickly, you’re demonstrating your responsiveness to their needs – timeliness can be absolutely crucial in giving that customer a good first impression of your business, which will go a long way in building a successful relationship.
Internet leads shouldn’t be treated any different to a face-to-face customer. You wouldn’t keep them waiting for hours so why do the same to another potential customer. Leave them for too long and they’ll lose patience and move on – likely to a competitor who’s happy to pick up the business.
Don’t worry if you can’t catch up with all leads at the right time – it might be that someone with a busy schedule is only able to make an enquiry in the middle of the night, however it doesn’t mean that they’ll be expecting a call straight back from an adviser. Just be realistic – calling back the next day is fine as long as the enquiry is still relevant, just don’t leave it until a week later when the prospect has likely moved on.
Nurture your customers
Treating internet leads the same as a face-to-face customer isn’t just limited to your response time – you should be treating all your customers the same throughout the whole sales journey.
Just because a prospect has arrived in your inbox – a faceless name with just an email address and telephone number – doesn’t mean you should dismiss it as a quick, easy sale.
When you call them, treat them as if they are a valued, long-term customer. If a customer can sense your genuine warmth and willingness to build a relationship, you’re more likely to earn their trust. Customer service goes a long way – even if you aren’t able to help them with their enquiry this time, it may be that they need your help at some time in their future. A friendly, helpful sales adviser who responded in good time is more likely to be remembered than an unhelpful, abrupt caller.
Being persistent doesn’t mean harassing customers until they agree to the sale, however what it does mean is pursuing genuine leads and following your sales process. You may not be able to speak to a lead straightaway, but this doesn’t mean you should forget about it. Successful sales people are dedicated to chasing each and every lead – and don’t give up at the first hurdle. It may mean you have to call the prospect at different times of the day, or they may request that you call back at a specific time which fits in with their schedule.
Even if you do get to speak to your leads, you aren’t going to convert every one. But just because you couldn’t help them the first time round, doesn’t mean you can’t win their custom at some point in the future.
By following up by email or phone call perhaps 3, 6 or even 12 months down the line you may just catch them when their circumstances have changed.
Simply Online Leads is an award-winning firm, specialising in online lead generation for financial services providers, brokers and intermediaries.
At SO Leads we recognise the demands that each individual business has to face and offer a simple, affordable solution. For more information about generating more leads for your business contact our team today!