By Erika Sommer, Content Writer at PipelineDeals
Organization should be a vital component of your sales toolbox. If it isn’t sharpened to top notch, it can ruin the assemblage of your company’s infrastructure.
Without adequate planning, how can you possibly build successful marketing campaigns, track and bucket leads, or turn them into sales prospects? This is why proper lead management is so important.
We’ll discuss some ways your company’s lead management may be failing, and how we can mitigate this issue with a Customer Relationship Management System (CRM).
But before we discuss how poor lead management can be detrimental to any company, let’s go over what a sufficient sales process should look like.
The Sales Process
Having a clearly thought out sales process is vital for a company to thrive. If you don’t have a process for capturing, qualifying, and nurturing your leads, you’ll lack consistency. Even if you have part of the process in place, without key pieces of the puzzle, how will you be able to manage your pipeline?
In order to move prospects down the funnel successfully, you’ll need a proper methodology for your team to follow. This is where the sales funnel comes in. It gives you full visibility of your sales process, allowing you to manage and track your leads, as well as determine where they are coming from and how to retain them. At PipelineDeals, we define a sales funnel as:
- Top of Funnel-Marketing Qualified Leads (MQL)
- Middle of Funnel-Sales Qualified Leads (SQL)
- Bottom of Funnel-Account Management
Marketing qualified leads are leads coming in from various marketing campaigns. This can be anything from social media, email campaigns, advertising, cold calling, webinars, trade shows, etc.
However they come into the funnel, if they express interest and engage with the marketing campaign, they will be considered a marketing qualified lead. They’ll then be passed onto a sales development representative (SDR) who qualifies them and passes them on to sales, where they will be nurtured and turned into a sale. Once sales reps close a deal, it’s all about account management and retaining those customers.
Without all the components of this well-defined sales process, you can see why it can be difficult to retain leads, and why deals may slip through the cracks.
So, what can go wrong within this sales process and how can you mitigate these issues? Here are some ways your business’s lead management process may be failing.
No Clear Marketing Strategy
If it’s not apparent already, having a robust marketing strategy in place is key for any company relying on lead generation. It’s one of the largest most cost effective ways a company can gather their leads.
But if you aren’t recording the lead source, you’ll run into major issues. Are they coming from social media, email, or other inbound campaigns? If you can’t keep track of where your leads are flowing in from, you won’t be able to determine what’s working on the marketing front, and what needs fixing.
No Defined Sales Process
As discussed above, having a defined sales process is key to any successful company. Without a clearly defined list of commands within your sales force, it’s hard to get the job done.
No Sales Development Representative
It’s extremely important that your sales team has a dedicated sales development representative. An SDR’s job is to transition leads through the pipeline. They take leads gathered from the marketing team, qualify the prospects, and bring them to the sales team as a sales qualified lead. Without an SDR, your sales force will have to carry the baggage of qualifying leads on their own. An SDR helps streamline the process, and helps clean up the leads coming through.
No Lead Allocation
Do you have a method for handing off leads? How do you determine which sales rep gets which lead? It’s vital to contact a lead almost immediately after they come through the funnel, but if you can’t organize who will call them, leads will drop off.
No Method for Nurturing Leads
Building relationships and nurturing prospects are key for lead acquisition and retention. You can’t just expect a prospect to move through the funnel on their own free will. Make sure you’re a part of that process.
Do so by providing them with content such as case studies, customer testimonials, and white papers. Check up on them through the process. If you provide them with a demo or trial and haven’t heard from them after a few days, follow up with them. Engage the prospect. Turn them into a customer.
No Lead Management System
Arguably the most important aspect of an effective lead management process is having an efficient lead management system. A perfect example of this is a Customer Relationship Management system such as a CRM.
At PipelineDeals, our CRM can do wonders for your business. Are you concerned with tracking how leads are funneling into your system? Our CRM allows you to tag leads by where they come from. From there you’ll get a better sense of which marketing channels are working for you, and which ones need some ramping up.
Are you having trouble assigning leads to your sales reps? Our CRM gives you visibility into how each member of the sales team is performing, and who you should distribute leads to.
It also gives you the ability to track and monitor leads throughout the sales process. With our status tracking feature, you can see which stage of the sales process the lead is in. You can monitor their activity, and schedule tasks throughout each step of their journey. So, if the lead has been sitting in a particular stage for a while, it may be time to up the nurturing process!
A CRM can move mountains in terms of your company’s success. What are you waiting for? Get started with PipelineDeals’ free 14 day trial today.