Customers are vital to every business, and they all start by being a lead. High-quality leads are the cherry on top of a delicious sundae when it comes to growing your business profitably. After all, if you don’t consistently bring on new customers, your client base can eventually erode until your growth becomes flat, stale, and unprofitable. That’s why it’s smart to spend significant time generating and working leads.
Unfortunately, a name and email address doesn’t constitute a high-quality lead that deserves your time. This is a lesson both marketing and sales people need to learn because many an hour has been spent toiling away on a contact that is NEVER going to do business with you.
How can you build a base of qualified leads and stop wasting precious time? Read on to find out.
What Is Considered A Bad or Unqualified Lead?
First things first. Identifying who is a strong lead and who is unwoo-able (yes I made that word up) is the first step in increasing your productivity regarding leads. As a starting point, these three categories aren’t worth your time:
- Someone outside your service area. Sure, it’s tempting to touch base with someone who seems interested in your product or service, even if they are out of your city or state. Doing this eats into time you could be talking to a viable prospect located in your service area. If a lead comes in from an area that you don’t handle, resist the urge to reach out. Resolve to spend your time with high-quality leads that are more likely to turn into sales.
- Someone who doesn’t have the budget to afford your services. Not all clients are the right clients for your business. It’s important to dig for answers to the main qualifying questions, like their budget for the project, early in the process. If they make it clear they can’t afford to make the investment you require, set them up with a nurture campaign to keep your business top of mind until when they’re serious..
- Someone who doesn’t have an intent to purchase soon. Even if they’re in your area and have money in their budget for your product, they need to be thinking about purchasing to be worth your effort. This is where that nurturing campaign comes in play again. That way they can receive all the great content you’re sharing and then when they’re ready, they can hopefully become a higher-qualified lead in the future.
How You Eliminate Wasting Time on Unqualified Leads
It’s easy to say you’re only going to focus on high-quality leads, then slowly drift back to working on unqualified leads “just in case” they could turn into something good. The following tips help you avoid that time-gobbling pitfall.
- Set up proper targeting to ensure bad leads don’t enter your pipeline, or at least get filtered out at specific stages. Think about the information on a prospect that would put them out of the running to become your customer, then use that data to build “knock-out” filters. Local lead generation software enables you to set parameters upfront that measure leads for you, putting unqualified leads out of sight and mind. This step saves tons of time that would otherwise be wasted on bad leads.
- Set up email marketing to nurture leads down the funnel. Just because leads are unqualified right now doesn’t mean they can’t be warmed up. It just means sales shouldn’t spend their time trying to close a deal with them at this moment in time. Using email marketing to deliver a message of how your company can reduce or eliminate their pain points keeps your message and brand in front of them. If the time is ever right, they can evolve into a hot lead down the road.
- Create content for each stage of the buyer’s journey. Content that appeals to leads that are almost ready to purchase may not catch the eye of the person whose buying decision is still several months away. You should create powerful, easy to digest content for both the qualified leads and the ones who aren’t ready right now for one reason or another. Using content to engage leads no matter where they are in the sales funnel paves the way for sales to only work on the ones that are ready to close. Your local lead generation software will notify you if an unqualified lead is making moves that indicate it’s getting hot.
- Set up automation. An automated process further qualifies leads once they enter the funnel, and weeds out the ones that don’t fit certain criteria. Every time a lead takes an action like downloading a piece of content, your automation system can assign that action a number. When they’ve taken enough actions to show they are interested, or hot, they reach a number that automatically triggers an alert for sales to reach out to them. This is a big time saver for us humans.
- Measure performance. By understanding where your leads come from, you can focus your energy and efforts on investing in the places that work best. Ensure you’re constantly improving your targeting, campaigns, and nurture streams by following the initiatives that work and those that don’t perform well. Tracking is integral in building stronger, more successful marketing plans as your company grows.
- Track phone calls. Set up phone call tracking to listen to recordings. Studying these interactions further improves your sales script and marketing messages. Reviewing how phone interactions are handled between sales and their leads is crucial. It pinpoints the specifics that managers should work on with sales, it ensures the company is being represented honestly and professionally, and it highlights the type of language that ends up gaining customers that then can be mimicked with other salespeople.
Improve Your Marketing Return on Investment (ROI) with Local Lead Generation Software
Stop wasting time on unqualified leads. Parlay your efforts into greater success and revenue by taking advantage of the benefits local lead generation software provides.
- Get instant notifications. Follow up immediately to gauge the quality of the new lead. Lead generation software can alert you immediately to a hot new lead, giving you a leg up on your competition. Recent studies show around half of sales go to the first vendor that responds. Be that vendor!
- Capture notes. Thinking you will remember every single detail you and a prospect discussed is not only unreasonable, it sets you up for failure. With lead generation software, every conversation gets saved for all team members to read. These notes are especially helpful if your sales cycle is long or if there are multiple people and teams involved in the sales journey.
- Measure ROI. Every salesperson and marketer knows that not all leads are created equal. Local lead generation software gives you the ability to track leads back to their point of origin. Are you getting your best leads from webinars, tradeshows, email campaigns, organic traffic, or paid advertising? Once you dig into the data, you’ll undoubtedly see that some perform significantly better than others. Some may not be bringing in any quality leads at all! Knowing which channels are creating your highest quality leads is essential in guiding you where you should be putting future resources to get the most bang for your buck.
- Improve efficiency. There are only so many hours in the day, which makes it important to spend your time on the leads that are most likely to become customers and make a difference. Being able to automate certain parts of our sales process frees up time to handle the important components of bringing on customers. Local lead generation software automates many small daily tasks that free up more time for your sales team’s schedules. Even a small bump in daily productivity can make a big difference in new account sales over time.
Request A Demo of the Sureful Local Marketing Platform
Chasing leads that have little chance of turning into customers is nobody’s idea of fun. If you’re tired of wasting time on bad or unqualified leads, contact us for a demo. We have helped companies like yours use local lead generation software to upgrade their sales efforts, automate certain processes to save time, improve sales productivity, and reach a better understanding of their lead generating channels. See how you can free up your time to focus on sales efforts that move the needle and increase your new business with our solution.