A time study will provide insight into how much time your sales reps are spending prospecting through cold calling, emailing and onsite drive-by visits. Prospecting efforts should always continue to be performed opportunistically for the sales field, but there is a better way.
World Class firms are utilizing Lead Generation efforts to generate qualified leads with the following benefits:
- Increased funnel – It’s common for B2B sales forces investing in Lead Generation to increase the size of opportunities in the funnel by 10%.
- Shorter, Accelerated Sales Cycles – On average, qualified leads passed to the sales force have significantly shorter sales cycles than the average sales cycle.
- Faster Ramping New Sales Reps – It’s no coincidence that World class firms who invest in demand generation find significantly shorter ramping times.
- Expanded selling capacity – Transition rep prospecting time to selling time.
Starting up Lead Generation is a Greenfield effort where the experts in the field are those companies who have done it and consultants who have assisted their clients. The top experts in the field today are those implementing Demand Generation programs and launching Lead Development Representative (LDR) teams. The quickest way to get started is to work with a consulting firm with experience in standing up LDR teams.
The Equation for Success: Lead Generation = Demand Generation + Lead Management
Lead Generation consists of two components; Demand Generation and Lead Management. Ideally, a marketing department should be structured with a head of Lead Generation who is supported by demandgen and leadgen resources.
Demand Generation – Content marketing and lead sourcing early in the buying process focused on generating inquiries into the very top of the funnel.
- Content Marketing – Author and align content for each stage of the buying process. Below is an example of content aligned by the stages of the buying process. A gap analysis can then be performed.
- Persona-driven Messaging – Develop messaging in lead sourcing media and content that point to the key “what’s in it for me?” of the audience. Provide fact-based evidence and proof points as reasons to believe the claim.
- Lead Sourcing – Plan and execute integrated media campaigns that leverage multiple modes (online, print, email, social, etc.) of contact to drive interaction. Includes sourcing inquires through the entire buying lifecycle of the customer, and sequencing for effective impressions and ideal frequency.
- Closed-loop Metrics – Track click metrics all the way through from interaction to cost per lead and ROI. Utilize a Proforma to understand the total cost per lead.
Lead Management – As prospects early in the buying process begin to interact with your company, there are new Lead Management processes to transform cold inquiries to warm leads. This is done by nurturing through marketing automation and personal contact by Lead Development Representatives.
- Lead Definition – Define what a “Lead” is for your company among both sales and marketing so the term is objective and not up for different interpretations.
- Lead Management Process – Define ownership of prospects and contacts at points of inquiry, within the CRM, standard operating procedures to support lead nurturing, qualifying requirements, and points of hand off to sales.
- Technology Infrastructure – Configure Marketing Automation to empower valuable insights, profile building, and nurturing tools.
- Pilot Strategy – Develop a plan to pilot a small LDR team of 1-3 serving a segment of the sales force.
- Selecting an LDR Team Leader – Select a quality professional to serve as the manager/director with phone-based telemarketing or Inside Sales management experience. The candidate should be a firm believer in sales 2.0 philosophy with an understanding of the buying process.
- Building an LDR Team – One of the quickest ways to gain insights into the job requirements of a Lead Development Representative is to search the job descriptions among World Class B2B organizations. This will provide you an insight into the position, role and responsibility, and compensation ranges.
Building a Lead Generation team is a competitive advantage while in in the next year as your competitors begin to do the same, this will become a means of survival. Don’t wait to get started, plan a strategy discussion with your leadership team and begin the process of building this capability for your company.
Learn more by downloading our Lead Generation Case Study.