Getting leads through your website and other marketing efforts can be hard. Only good content and a compelling message are enough to breakthrough the litany of ads and competing marketing to resonate with a potential client. Good quality leads that are generated through customer referrals, website traffic, and external marketing are hard enough to get in the first place, you don’t want to lose any potential sales to poor follow up.
You have a CRM…. USE IT
Using a CRM system to ensure that leads generated have an account person assigned to them is key to ensuring that every lead generated through your website will be vetted and pushed through your sales funnel appropriately. Having all leads flow through your CRM system also ensures that your sales process doesn’t have a single point of failure. Someone being out sick, being on vacation, maternity/paternity, or leaving the company can potentially create a gap that can leave quality leads without anyone to follow up on them. So, the first thing that needs to be done is that your website needs good forms that capture enough information on your leads for you to know something meaningful about them for your follow up conversation. Depending on the size of your sales team, you might also ask for regional information or company size. Some of those metrics can be used by your CRM system to automatically deliver regional or company size specific leads directly to the appropriate contact person without human intervention.
Another thing that you might want to consider when setting up a lead flow funnel from website leads is an automation system. Almost any modern CRM system that you can buy on the market today gives you the option to set up lead flow systems. Many of the most basic lead flow automations consist of something very simple like a bounce back email after someone submits a form requesting information from you website that just confirms receipt to the client and ensures that someone will be in contact with them soon. More in-depth forms of automation are also beneficial, as well, especially if your company puts out an assortment of whitepapers or case studies on a regular basis. It can help to keep colder leads inside of your funnel for longer and to continue to prove the benefits that your company can provide.
Let Your CRM Do Some of the Heavy Lifting
Once your leads have filled out forms on your website and have been captured by an automation cycle, now is the time to set your sales team up for some success. One of the most important things to do when starting a lead conversion process is to create a contact and company for the lead if your CRM system doesn’t already do that for you. The next step is to create activities to research the company briefly to know what kind of business that they are in to have some kind of familiarity on the call. After that you should create an activity to call that person at your soonest convenience. There is a good chance that if a potential customer found you through Google that they are also checking out your competitors, as well. So, initiating contact as soon as possible is always a great approach.
After you have made some kind of contact and maybe scheduled a conference call or some form of next steps an opportunity for that customer needs to be created for that customer in your CRM with a realistic odds of closing and a proposed close date. Being realistic really does matter in this situation because many CRMs like Salesforce, Connectwise, and more take those closing odds and dates into consideration when using their sales forecasting tools.
One other important tool to take advantage of in your CRM to keep lead follow up on track is your activity tracking system. Every open lead that has an opportunity associated with it needs to have an open activity for a salesperson to follow up on. Whether that activity is internal or external communication it needs to be documented in the system. The way that I have always said it is that your CRM needs to be the key to continued success for whoever should take over for you after you are promoted within the company. It creates for easy handoff and also keeps things from falling through the cracks.
As I said before, it is hard enough to generate quality sales leads that you can’t risk losing them with poor organization and follow up. You might also have an automation system in place that you aren’t using to the full extent that can help to keep leads in your funnel longer and facilitate easier follow up in some cases. Take advantage of all the tools that you have in your arsenal to make the most out of the leads that come through your website.