6 Lead Generation Best Practices
Lead generation is the Rodney Dangerfield of the corporate world. It gets no respect. Yet it provides the first impression that many prospective clients have of a company, and can provide a wealth of information that can impact sales, as well as product development, marketing and service.
When approached the right way, lead generation is an organization’s most valuable resource. So, how can organizations get the most out of their sales prospecting teams? Here are six lead generation practices to follow:
1. Decide if an in-house or outsourced team is right for you. Many organizations simply look at the bottom line when deciding whether to outsource. But there are other costs to consider, including benefits and management oversight, productivity attrition (the time a person isn't productive), turnover, and ramp-up time. Sometimes a hybrid approach works for businesses. An outsourced partner handles outbound prospecting and an in-house team handles inbound lead generation. This can be effective since outbound prospecting tends to be ignored because inbound is "warmer."
2. Invest in good data. Before the first lead generation call is made, however, behind-the-scenes work must take place to make sure callers are given high-quality, clean, industry-specific contacts. This should be the job of researchers who develop lists and validate accurate contact information so there are no wasted touches when a campaign begins. Giving an unconfirmed or outdated list to your lead generation team slows down campaigns and skews conversion data. If 30 percent of a list is irrelevant or inaccurate, the correct way to calculate conversion is on the 70 percent that contains accurate data.
3. Plan a workflow that incorporates a realistic call volume. Develop a campaign structure that combines at least two channels, such as email and phone contact, with phone follow up over a realistic length of time. Plan for when touches should occur, and their frequency, so lead generation can be professionally persistent over time. Plan call volumes so your team can follow up in a relevant time period. If you send 1,000 emails, it may take 10 business days to call the list of recipients. This will not allow representatives to make a second call in an acceptable time period, and results will suffer.
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