Companies running traditional CRM programs suffer from what I call, “Leaky Pipelines.” The symptoms of this vary from company to company. Over the years, I’ve worked with many companies, and in the end, I found that companies need to get better at one thing – converting leads to sales. But, some companies are challenged in doing this.
Here’s my view of the three biggest Leaky Pipeline problems:
Leads Leaking is about the value of your marketing, and how effectively your campaigns generate leads. And, one of the most ignored and largest reasons for Leads Leakage is around the systems that aggregate, push, and track those leads.
If you do not follow up with leads promptly, the leads go stale. For example, a lead generation campaign has an opt-in piece of content to download. The marketing team then collects the leads from their system and push them into the company’s CRM system.
But by the time the sales people make their first attempt to reach the leads, days or even weeks will have passed. Do you remember what you browsed on the Internet yesterday? Or how about the day before that? The fact is, the more time that passes after the lead shows initial interest, the more chance they will forget your offering or worse yet, move on to one of your competitors.
This is probably the simplest leak to fix, but it’s still the most ignored opportunity for growing sales. Year-after-year, studies have shown that 80% of sales require 5 or more follow-up calls. But, 44% of sales reps give up after only one follow-up call. Most CRM platforms simply track phone calls, but they don’t encourage follow-ups. The lack of follow-up allows prospects to leak out of the pipeline as the sales force focuses on the easy sales. . . not the ones that require more follow up.
Sales are all about closing, but most sales teams focus their efforts at chasing leads. But what they fail to see is that the easiest sales wins come from the ones they already made. Another flaw of most CRM systems is they lack real sales data. Most systems are used to convert leads to customers, but because the sales are not tracked, it becomes hard to predict when the customer might be receptive to buying again.
Since your customer already has experience with your products or services, they are already warmer to hearing from you. Existing customers are your best prospects, and know this – retaining a customer is 6 to 7 times less expensive than acquiring a new one.
All sales professionals know that an easy area for growth comes from referrals. But what sales pros overlook is the willingness of their existing customers to bring them new business through referrals. 91% of customers say they would give referrals, but only 11% of sales professionals ever asks for them.
Leak Finding & Plugging
If the leakage problems I spoke of ring true for you and your business, first take pride in the fact that building a sales pipeline in itself is a tremendous achievement and you have succeeded where others have failed. What’s next for you is a matter of fine-tuning and optimizing what you’ve started.
If you need help in identifying and plugging those leaks, let me help you with a comprehensive, on-site audit of your business. I’ll review your workflows and systems, and in the end give you a summary report and a detailed map that will give you a clear picture of your customer’s journey and ways to optimize it.
If you’re interested, let me know a little more about your business, and then we can schedule a call to review your goals and understand your challenges. https://goo.gl/forms/WpuB5JktKrHVSxGc2