On tracking sales data and outreach
- Identify your best acquisition channels
- Dial enough numbers
- Generate leads
- Qualify good leads
- Close deals
As a sales person, tracking your sales data should be a practice, and for obvious reasons. Your data is the most straightforward indicator of how well you’re doing with your sales strategies, including your sales calls approach.
Data also provides you metrics or benchmarks for measuring your conversion rate, which tells you the percentage of people in your contact list who move forward across each stage in your demand generation funnel—from being a name that you cold called to a lead, and finally, a buyer.
Here are some takeaways on how your sales calls can give you the conversion rate you’re aiming for:
1. Identify your best acquisition channels
Your sources of lead may come from any one or more of the following:
- Inbound marketing
- Sales prospecting
- Social media
- Managed live chat
The key is to choose the channel that best suits your industry. If you’re a real estate agent, for instance, it would be more practical and productive to go to live open house events than attend a webinar. But if the majority of your business is online, then meet your visitors where they are with lead generating live chat services.
If you’re at those open house events, you get to touch base with your leads through events personally, it’s easier to re-establish that contact point when you’re ready to pick the phone and call your lead. And if you’re working through your site, it’s handy to bridge the gap between interested visitor and deal close with an effective qualifying channel like live chat.
You should also consider such factors as your target time frame in selecting a lead acquisition channel. Using the same example, you’d do better to participate in open house events in real time instead of waiting for your inbound marketing to produce some leads for you.
2. Dial enough numbers
The amount of sales calls your team makes can determine how the rest of your telemarketing campaign will move ahead or lag behind.
If you make do with a small number of phone sales, your reach rate and number of closed deals will naturally be lower. Altogether, these will have a negative impact on your sales goals.
Find out and resolve what possible issues are preventing your sales team from calling enough contacts. It might be lack of personnel, the below-par speed of some agents, or a broader issue with your phone system. From there, you can revisit this metric to see if your telemarketing efforts are getting better.
3. Keep reaching for leads to increase sales
Fifteen percent is a conservative benchmark for the so-called reach rate, which represents the number of business decision makers you get hold of. Double this to 30 percent, and you’re highly likely to get a more positive conversion rate from your sales calls. But how do you improve your reach rate?
Your spiel and your agents’ telemarketing skills will be put to the test here. You know very well that people in general dislike getting cold calls, and cold calling agents couldn’t agree more that it’s really tough to get through the VIPs who call the shots.
Then again, they believe in the art of persuasion. They have the mindset that initial contacts are real people they can find connections with and help them reach their leads the next time around.
4. Qualify more good leads
First off, you need to make sure that you have good leads. With good leads, you have a 50 percent chance that half of the people you reach will become your qualified leads who are real decision makers you get to talk to and could categorize as a good fit for your product or service offering.
Conversely, if you have bad leads, you’ll be qualifying fewer people from those you’re able to reach. The workaround here is to define what makes a good lead by having a more specific description or criterion of your target market.
5. Close more sales
Of course, it’s your ultimate goal to close deals with your leads. You should aspire for a 50 percent closing benchmark to keep you afloat.
Re-evaluate techniques on sales calls
If you’re struggling to get around this number despite having a good reach and qualifying rate, it’s only right that you re-evaluate your telemarketing techniques, especially your closing.
On another note, it also makes perfect sense for you to retrace your steps across your demand generation funnel and assess if you have the right contact list, calling script, and cold calling SOPs.
The bottom line is that it’s worth pointing out that cold calling may not be the real culprit here, but the way it’s done.
Johanna Rivard drives the product and data strategies at PureB2B. She's a two-decade veteran of the online publishing, B2B demand generation, and technology media markets. When not in the office, Johanna enjoys her family, fitness routines and reading self-help books. She can be found on Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/johannarivard