Avionics News May 2017 - 46
G R E G
L A S L O
Reeling Them In
How to nurture your leads to meet your sales goals
hen you're fishing for new customers,
it's definitely not catch and release.
You spend good time and money
attracting each prospect, so it should be hard to let any
get away. Yet not everyone is ready - right then and
there - to take the bait.
Of course, the reality is that customers buy when
they're ready, not when you are, and you undoubtedly
have a list of leads that's fuller than your calendar.
Indeed, the challenge has always been moving them
from one to the other. To do that, you must do something
meaningful with each from the start.
The goal of lead prospecting is to take strategic action
to move prospects deeper into your sales funnel and turn
them into buying customers. Surprisingly (or not), it's
something few small businesses do well. If anything is
surprising, it's how outright bad most are at this critical
task, according to consumer research.
That's a problem, because customers often come to
you further along in the buying process, and they're
better-qualified leads than you'd expect. They need
responsiveness, according to Myers Barnes, author of
Supercharged Sales. And since you have already paid to
attract them, you might as well get your money's worth
out of the effort.
This begins with contacting them quickly, and it
continues with communications and check-ins that keep
you front of mind until they're ready. While they might
not buy in three months, six months, or a year, they have
done you the favor of letting you know you're on their
radar, and that puts the ball in your court. Think of it
this way: Follow-up is your first customer-service test,
according to sales coach Nicki Joy.
Passing the test requires knowing why lead follow-up
is important, creating a personalized multichannel plan
for staying in touch, and implementing that plan with
some smart practices so customers feel connected when
they're set to go. When you accomplish that, you have
given yourself all the tools you need to reel them in.
In a world of Google, Amazon and Netflix, shoppers
have learned they can get what they want, anytime
they want, according to Barnes. Like it or not, that
luxury primes them to want fast service from you, too.
Consequently, you should recognize those expectations,