Once you have defined your ideal sales-ready qualified lead and determined the number needed to hit your annual sales revenue goal, the next step is to create plans to get the lead gen machine producing them.
Top of funnel:
A great deal has been said about top of funnel basic lead generation. Make sure you are solid here with your plan. Contrary to popular belief, it is very difficult to generate inbound responses from your target market. Most inbound traffic, I am sad to say, is from those outside your desired target group, so be careful. Also, inbound lead gen takes a long time and content is critical so make sure you have the time and budget in place to get the job done.
Here is where you want to nurture your responders until they cross from a top of funnel inquiry to a true sales-ready contender.
For instance, you may decide that a multi-touch, 3-tactic plan with email, direct mail and teleprospecting/tele-qualification is an approach you think will deliver the sales-ready leads necessary to hit your sales goals.
Key Steps to Quality “Sales-Ready Leads”
- Know your “sales-ready lead” goals and metrics.
- Know your target prospect TAM (total available market) numbers. Compare to TAM in your sweet spot vs. what you have. Create a plan to obtain the unknown targets.
- Fundamentals: Content, offers, messaging, hooks, etc, to serve up as you qualify prospects.
- Multi-touch plan to engage and qualify IB responders. Monitor your numbers daily. Watch for deficits as they trip up most companies.
- Multi-touch plan to the non-responders to fill the shortfall. This is the new reality. Have a plan to engage the non-responders in your target base and get them interested so you hit your funnel numbers. Beware: you snooze here, you lose.
- Also, beware of relying too much on Marketing Automation as a short cut to quality lead production. You want to be sure to develop a strong end-to-end lead-to-sales process before automating it. Once you have the process in place, marketing automation tools can help you support your various campaigns.
Note. It’s important to have management sign off on your metrics models. Run the numbers bottom up and top down.
Once you are under way, it is critical to monitor these numbers weekly and/or daily. Implementing an agile marketing and lead management team and process is crucial to giving you the end-to-end visibility into all your campaigns.
A team of experts with tools is the key to success, so you may want to consider partnering with a lead development agency to ensure your sales funnel flows at the rate you need to hit your numbers. If you need help establishing a lead-to-sales funnel plan or running your programs, consider contacting us. We can help.