Many businesses and salespeople concentrate all their energies on the really "hot" leads - the people who want something right now and are willing to pay for it now.
I've seen it myself working in different sales departments at different companies. People only have so much time and energy to commit to making sales and so they concentrate on the leads that seem to be the most promising. The guy they saw last month who said "maybe" gets bumped way down the list in terms of importance and top-of-mind with the salesperson.
I believe this is a big mistake. I think that ALL of your leads are valuable. Just because they aren't customers yet, doesn't mean they won't become one later on when their circumstances change or their need becomes more acute.
Let's face it, unless it's a problem that's happening right now and having immediate impact - like a burst pipe in the basement or smoke coming from the car engine - most of us don't take action right away.
It's the same with your business - most people don't come to your website and purchase something immediately. They need to check you out, see if they like your way of approaching things and if they find your offerings interesting and possibly beneficial to them.
There are many reasons why prospects may not be willing to engage your services immediately:
• They are dealing with more pressing things at this time
• They do not have enough information about your product or service
• They are not ready to make a decision
• They do not yet feel comfortable or trust you enough yet
• They are comparing information from other companies and trying to determine the best choice for them
You need to keep your name in front of your leads - whether they're already customers or have yet to purchase something. By following up repeatedly with prospective customers￼, you have a better chance of getting the sale when they are ready to buy - because you've remained top-of-mind by providing valuable communications with them.
When you keep in contact with your leads - warm or cold - you are sending them a powerful message: that you believe they are important and worth cultivating a relationship with - even if they haven't bought anything yet.
So be a smart marketer and treat all of your leads - wherever they are in your marketing funnel - with the same level of respect and importance. Remember that today's leads are tomorrow's customers.
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