Keep the Trash Out of Your Pipeline. Qualify Your Leads with Sales Intelligence

Keep the Trash Out of Your Pipeline. Qualify Your Leads with Sales Intelligence:from Business 2 Community 

Do you always know who’s on the other end of a sales call? If we sell to businesspeople, we expect to communicate with businesspeople. But what if the lead we end up trying to reach is far from professional and employable? Imagine spending your day calling and emailing Marcus J. Price, a questionable Sarsaparilla producer who sleeps on an air mattress in the corner of his shop and lounges in a dirty tank top. Marcus may be your ideal prospect if you distribute soda or sell used mattresses. But he has little budget, and as a team of one, he won’t be buying a significant quantity of anything. Do you want him in your pipeline?
Organizations that qualify leads purely through cold calls may catch Marcus on the line. Implementing Sales Intelligence into your sales and marketing strategy will keep trash leads like Marcus J. Price far away from your funnel.
Sales Intelligence moves beyond basic company and contact data. Incorporate elements of Sales Intelligence in your lead qualification to ensure that every lead your sales reps touch is actually worth a phone call.
When qualifying leads, prioritize those that contain at least one element of Sales Intelligence.
Trigger Events
Trigger events are occurrences or news alerts that stimulate new business opportunities and challenges. Trigger events include executive hiring news, new venture funding, expanded operations, new product offerings, and more. Determine which news events create needs for your prospects, and call them when those news events occur – right when a new need develops.
Executives ignore 92% of the sales calls and emails they get. But 84% of the time, they’ll respond to a referral. Keep track of all your networks. All connections may lead to your prospect: LinkedIn – business, Facebook – personal, college – alumni, work history – profession, etc. You’ll never know that your #1 prospect was college roommates with your CFO unless you make it a habit to dig into your connection network before getting on the phone. You could send months of unreturned voice mails and marketing nurture emails, or you could have a single conversation with your CFO.
Social Media
Rather than using social media just to listen to your prospects and engage with them on their posts and tweets, take an offensive social media approach. Instead of building an email campaign to nurture leads that download content or attend demos, create a Twitter nurture track. Engage them with a thank you Tweet, then invite them to view additional content (case studies, guidebooks, videos, etc.) through Tweets. Twitter is designed to allow users to consume huge quantities of content in a very short amount of time. Email is designed to communicate important information that you don’t want public. Email is still an important marketing medium, but save email for all your best targeted leads, and use social media to qualify the rest.
Solely because of a pipeline prioritization, leading email service provider, Bronto Software, boosted its lead conversion rate by 32%, with 125% reduction in lead conversion time.
Start using elements of Sales Intelligence to qualify leads, and you could see numbers like Bronto’s by year’s end. Not to mention that you could see all the Marcus Prices of the world disappear from your CRM forever.

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