The number of salespeople and companies that share with me how they do not feel their prospecting plan works always amazes me. Then again, I have to admit I am continually assessing my own prospecting plan to determine its effectiveness, too.
If we’re not prospecting effectively, then how do we expect to be able to make our goals? It comes down to a very simple premise — if we don’t start right, our chances of finishing right are not good.
Below are a few of the things I look at when working with salespeople and companies on measuring their prospecting process.
Yes, I do go quite a bit deeper when working with companies, but start off by asking yourself these questions:
1. What % of your leads ultimately turn into customers?
2. At what phase of the selling process do the potential customers fall out of the sales process?
3. What is your definition of a lead and under what pretense do you begin to classify them as a lead and then as a potential customer?
4. What is the process for creating leads? Who owns the process?
5. What criteria do you use to determine the potential of a lead?
6. How long does it take for someone to go from lead status to a customer? Has this timeframe changed over the last year?
7. What is the primary reason a person would want to become a lead for you?
8. Do you have to educate leads as to what you do or are they knowledgeable of what you provide before they become a lead?
9. Do you know the cost of acquisition for a lead and a customer?
10. How has your prospecting process changed over the last 12 months?
11. What do you do with leads that do not turn into customers?
12. How confident are you with the CRM system you use?
I see far too many salespeople struggling to close sales when what they have is not a selling problem, but rather a prospecting problem.
An example I like to use is it’s no different than thinking somebody is going to drive from Othello, Washington, to Surprise, Florida (yes, those towns do exist) without Google maps or even highway signs to guide them. Using Google maps is going to get you from Othello to Surprise a lot faster than without any assistance. The same goes for closing sales. With the right plan, you can attract and nurture the right prospects to give you the right customers.
Let me know what you think of your prospecting plan. I’m happy to share ideas and help you and your sales team get on the right track.
This issue of prospecting is what I’ll be talking about April 11 at OutBound in Atlanta. Joining me are my good friends and extremely smart sales experts, Jeb Blount, Mike Weinberg, and Anthony Iannarino. There might still be a few tickets left! Check out www.OutBoundConference.com and we’ll talk more in Atlanta.
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Copyright 2018, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog. Mark Hunter is the author of High-Profit Prospecting: Powerful Strategies to Find the Best Leads and Drive Breakthrough Sales Results