Top 7 Qualities of an Ideal Sales Lead
This post reflects my love and hate relationship with this four-letter word “LEAD”.
Sales and Marketing are always at loggerheads on what is a perfect sales lead. Marketing team is always confident that they produce the best quality leads for sales team and sales team swear that if only those garbage leads would have got sifted from their queue, life would have been much better.
The conversations which surrounds Lead should always be backed up with the Lead statistics so that the perceptions and observations of different teams can be catered to. It does not take a minute to pass the judgment that all the leads hitting my queue are wasting my time. If the conclusions are backed up with examples and the count, it will help everyone to work on those challenges. In the longer run, this exercise will prove fruitful as it will result in eradicating the sales team’s concern which will eventually result in a better collaboration between sales and marketing team. A WIN-WIN for all.
In general, what a Salesperson wishes for: A Lead is ready for a sales touch when that contact has EXPLICITLY expressed to be contacted by sales and has CONFIRMED their intent to buy.
And what Marketing aspires: A set of prospects who has been hunted by various marketing activities and now the next level of farming stage needs to be done by Sales team.
The bridge which connects Marketing aspiration to Sales expectation is generally missing. This I will cover in my subsequent posts. In my first post in this series, I will be covering:
What is A Perfect Sales Lead for a Salesperson?
Unique lead: It’s a NEW lead in the real sense. They have never seen it before and it’s definitely a “unique new prospect”. A sales rep will be excited to talk to this new prospect
Correct Contact Details: When I mention correct, it means that an inside sales person has checked that the email address is correct and the phone number which is mentioned is functional
The designation, department: What good it will be for a sales rep to target a lead who does not fit the bill and is not in the list of the titles which are targeted by them. The job title and the department in which they work in, gives a sales rep instant information on their decision making ability, their influence during the purchasing process and where does the lead stand in the buying journey
Source and Origin: Where did this lead come from and how did it originate. It’s an utopian conclusion that a prospective buyer visits the website (without doing any research) and straight away fills a sales contact form. The buying journey and the research cycle in today’s world is intricate. A prospective buyer engages in a series of activities before they take the final plunge on the willingness to speak to a sales rep. Hence, a sales rep is always interested to see the seed and the roots
Lead Notes: The lead notes should capture the history of that lead. Before a sales person picks up the call or plans to send an email, they should know what all interactions the lead had with the organisation and also what marketing messages were shared with them. Did they do multiple interactions, or they completed only one activity. Sales rep has easy access to the previous interactions of that lead with their organisation (what webinar was attended, what event was registered, which page were frequently visited, which ads did he click on, did the lead also engage during the website chat, is the chat transcript available etc). This is a gold mine which will leave a sales rep delighted
Yes, I want Sales to contact me: The prospect has explicitly expressed for a sales contact. This is a very tricky point and need to be dealt with due diligence. The call to actions which Marketing has defined might contradict with what a sales person believes in. If a prospect has filled a sales contact form and downloaded an ebook, or a whitepaper, this does not upfront indicates that the lead wants to be contacted by Sales. We do exchange our information in lieu of content and many a times we enter dummy information! The need that a sales person should contact the lead can only be validated when “the bridge” gets in touch with them or there is a marketing activity which the lead has fulfilled where it was written in bold and caps, that “I WANT SALES TO CONTACT ME” (NOW)
Who’s Who: When the sales rep is accessing the lead in their queue, they can also see who are the other contacts from the prospects organisations with their complete contact details and at what level they are. This gives sales rep an idea on the organisation chart and they will be in a better decision making stage.
This is the first post in the Lead Management Blog Post Series. My next post will feature the challenges on the architecture of a perfect sales lead.