When you are trying your hardest to grow your business, it is only natural that you are tempted to search up quick fixes that require the least effort. However, the truth is that there is no easy way out as hard work and perseverance is key in this sector, all the more so when dealing with your leads.
To convert a lead into a customer is not an easy task. According to Bain & Company, it costs 6 to 7 times more to acquire a new customer than retain an existing one. While many businesses may focus their resources on lead generation, they lack the know-how on effectively dealing with the prospects that are generated. Tried-and-true formulas that help you deal with leads may not always succeed as some leads may prove to be more difficult than others.
Identify the needs of your lead
When dealing with leads, keep in mind the fact that the interests and preferences of the leads become the highest priority. Increasing sales may be our ultimate goal, but a potential customer must not be dealt with as a mere tool to grow your sales.
You probably need your customer more than they need you but make sure that they never feel that way. The lead must always feel that the product you offer is exactly what they need. To aid this, build a good rapport with your lead and foster a feeling of trust. The time spent catering to the needs of a potential customer can be rewarding in the long run.
Know your competition
When convincing a difficult lead, keep in mind the fact that they have probably already looked at alternatives. Having a fair idea of what your competitors have to offer can help you better highlight how your product is different or better.
According to Bain & Company, a customer is 4 times more likely to defect to a competitor if the problem is service-related than price or product-related.
Never openly criticize your competitors as this could potentially backfire and make your customer view you in a negative light.
When the competition is intense, this is one step that would quickly help turn leads into customers. Think about it this way, if you were a customer would you wait around to avail a service when you could find a better offer?
We live in a fast-paced world and people are used to having their wants instantly gratified. With declining attention spans and frequently distracted minds, the digital era is a flurry of activity and time is of the essence. So contact your prospect as soon as possible and offer them all the assistance they need to choose their next course of action.
A Dedicated Sales Team
Having a dedicated sales team in place can make all the difference when it comes to persuading those difficult leads into buying your product. Your sales team should be properly trained and when I say trained, don’t confuse the training with a one-time process.
The sales team must be trained periodically so that they can keep up with the changing market and customer needs. Upskilling your existing workforce can help them adapt to the changing times and thus help convert more leads into customers.
Regular Assessment of the Sales Team
Once a dedicated sales team is in place, make sure they are regularly monitored so that they stay motivated. Regular assessments can help in identifying the shortcomings at an early stage so that proper steps can be taken to deal with the problem.
Track the time it takes for each employee to follow-up on a lead, identify the underperforming employees and take steps to improve the performance of the team.
Not all leads are similar and half the battle is won if your sales employee can accurately pinpoint the stage that a lead is currently at and then follow-up accordingly. While one lead may be looking to buy promptly, another may not yet be looking to buy.
To identify the stage each lead is at and then take appropriate steps is easier said than done. Your employees must be willing to go that extra mile for the leads and never give up on a difficult lead to pursue an easier lead. In paper losing one lead may not seem like a huge loss but in this highly competitive field, it is one too many.
Psychological triggers can be effectively used to drive action. Generating curiosity and providing a great build-up for your product can go a long way in getting your customer to make that first purchase. If you can successfully capture the curiosity of the customer by offering something new half the battle is won.
Human beings are driven by a desire to feel important. Hence, making sure that your customer understands how much you value their time and interests can help them make a positive decision. A key point to keep in mind here is that your concern must not be limited to words, it must be apparent in your actions too.
Another tried-and-tested trigger is social proof. Reviews, testimonials, referrals and case studies can influence the customers to a great extent as it builds confidence. Think about it this way, wouldn’t most of us look at customer reviews before making a decision between different brands? This is how social proof works.
If a potential customer is reluctant to commit, make them an offer they cannot refuse, at least not without having some serious misgivings. Attractive offers are also a part of lead generation but it matters even in conversion of leads into customers.
Understand the needs of the customer and provide them with information on the offers that you think might suit them. Most leads would find offers tempting and if you could add the scarcity tactic by limiting the time or quantity available for the offer, you would stand a better chance of converting that difficult lead into a customer.
According to an analysis by Salesforce, “on average, 13% of leads convert to opportunities and the average time for conversion is 84 days. Conversion rate from opportunity to deal is even lower — only 6% of opportunities convert to deals, but it takes only 18 days, on average, to convert.”
Given how challenging lead conversion is, one must remember that given a shortage of time or resources the focus must be on converting the easier leads rather than the difficult ones. Convincing a difficult lead can be a demanding task with no assurance of success but make sure you never give up without trying.