What’s a Lead?
Budget. Is the prospect aware and capable of meeting budget requirements?
Authority. Are the important players in the purchasing decision process involved?
Need. Has a clear initiative or need been acknowledged? Are they motivated?
Time frame. Has it been determined when the purchase decision will take place?
Sales ready. Is there comfort in the imminent prospect of meeting with a salesperson?
If your organization has set out to provide genuine, sales-ready leads to your sales team, pick up the phone. In fact, this function is so important that creating a dedicated teleprospecting function should become a top priority.
Step Four: Handing Off Leads to Sales
If you have gone through the worthwhile trouble to pick up the phone to identify leads that are ready for sales to attempt conversion, then the handoff from the teleprospecting team to sales becomes critically important if you hope to make the most of your investment.
Here are five guidelines for making sure the baton doesn’t get dropped in the process:
1. Qualified, sales-ready leads are prepared in the marketing department for the handoff to sales. This means all the gathered data is complete and in the database.
2. Marketing sets up a meeting or phone call between the lead and the appropriate parties in sales.
3. The teleprospecting team sends a confirmation e-mail to the lead, informing him or her of the handoff, and copies both the sales representative and the sales lead.
4. The teleprospecting team alerts the salesperson of the new, sales-ready lead and sends him or her a lead data sheet, which provides prospect profile information and detailed notes of all phone conversations with the lead.
5. Each sales-ready lead is transferred to the sales database or CRM system.
It’s important to be methodical when passing leads to the salesforce. Taking shortcuts in the handoff stage, such as not adhering to the lead definition or providing incomplete contact history to the salesforce, may result in miscommunication and missed opportunities.