Turning leads into customers is one of the most important parts of your entire growth marketing strategy. If not the most important.
Whether you are just beginning to refine your sales strategy, or whether you are examining your process now, these are the six absolutely essential fundamentals that we have found, time and time again, improve your conversion rate with very little effort.
1. Effectively use a customer relationship system (CRM)
CRM systems, at the very core – enable you to capture, manage and measure the conversations you are having with your leads.
The physical act of codifying conversations and lead numbers not only supports you in remembering opportunities amongst the chaos of day-to-day business, but it allows others to jump in and help and creates tracking that you can use to measure your ROI.
If introducing a CRM software system feels like a big jump, use a spreadsheet format. Anything is better than emails and phone calls alone.
2. Add value for free
A simple, powerful tool for converting leads to customers is to offer some kind of non-monetary value along their journey to buying a product. This could be something as simple as a link to an interesting article, a meal, a PDF etc.
Something that will add value to their life right now will engage their need to reciprocate and put you in a great position when you do ask for that sale.
3. Don’t be a hero
Every single conversation you have along the journey from leads to customers needs to be about the problems and the desires of the lead in question. They are the hero – you are their biggest fan – and your only purpose is to help them solve their problems and achieve success.
If you have to talk about yourself, talk in the context of how your experience helps them.
4. Follow up on all leads
This one is really simple, but you’d be surprised how quickly you will disappear in the minds of your potential customers if you never follow up.
Create and test a cadence for follow up to establish some consistent rules for your business, and never forget to do it.
Combining point 2 (adding value for free) with this point can often make it a lot easier to get in touch with leads.
5. Set and communicate clear goals
Whether you are a business owner doing all the sales work yourself, or you have a team of people converting leads to customers, setting and communicating clear goals for the month (the week or the quarter) is important to understand how you are performing and where you can work on the process.
Although you will always be dealing with external factors, there are many different techniques that can be employed within your sales process that could potentially make an incredible difference to your results.
6. Create consistency
My absolute favourite principle when it comes to marketing and sales is “create consistency”.
Consistency is always aimed for and seldom achieved. But it is absolutely essential if you want to set your business up for success.
Let me explain – if you are not delivering your leads to customer process the same way every single time there is no way for you to study the performance of your actions to look for patterns or trends.
Similarly, there is no way for you to make improvements unless you can guarantee that those improvements will be followed through in a consistent manner.
Consistency will also support your business to scale up, down, across countries or even through franchises without any loss of performance.
Once you have achieved these six fundamentals it is likely your sales process would have improved significantly. Beyond this, you can start exploring ways of improving it using modern psychological principles or technology.
Making these changes permanent takes time and effort but never forget the risk of doing nothing at all.