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No one said that tech marketing was easy. After all, you’re trying to reach IT leaders — some of the busiest people on the earth. Not only that, other companies are hot on their trails too. Naturally, they’re seeking cover, doing everything they can to avoid vendors and stay focused on their never-ending to-do’s.  

Given the challenges of reaching your target audience, you need to have your marketing and sales ducks in a row. Where are marketers going wrong?

Published in Lead Generation
Wednesday, 02 September 2015 00:00

How to Improve Sales and Achieve Quota

“Procrastination makes easy things hard, hard things harder,” Mason Cooley, an American writer.

It’s September. We’re almost into the fourth quarter (Q4) and John, the Vice President of Sales, is in a mild panic. It’s not surprising. After all, time’s running out to meet his quota and sales are soft.

How did he get into this position?

When he arrived at work at the beginning of January, he was full of optimism for the New Year and ready to tackle the sales challenges. Ahead of him stretched twelve long months to make it all happen. Plenty of time to fill the pipeline, nurture leads and convert them into sales. Or so he thought.

It seems like this missing link is made of gold. What are these sales lead management teams doing that is multiplying the number of ready-to-buy prospects while cutting marketing costs?

But things didn’t work out that way.

Each month sales fell just a little short. And John thought he could tweak a few things to catch up. It didn’t work. Now, he’s about 5% down year to date. Making up those lost sales in the last quarter will require some heroics.

Does this sound familiar?

Too often glass-half-full leaders fail to take strong actions to get sales back on track until they’re up against the wall. Time, their friend at the beginning of the year, zips along and turns into their enemy. And, as Cooley noted so wisely, procrastination makes hard things become harder.

Published in Lead Qualification

Here are a few B2B lead generation New Year’s resolutions that will get you off on the right foot for 2015.

Published in Lead Management

How to rock sales lead development? The quick answer…put a sales lead management team to work.

That of course, begs the question, “what is a sales lead management team?” It is, unfortunately, often the missing link between sales and marketing. It’s that gap between the two disciplines where leads are lost either because marketing doesn’t qualify them or sales doesn’t follow up on them. Conveniently, marketing points the finger at sales and sales points the finger at marketing.

If only there was a group in between marketing and sales that could take marketing leads and transform them into qualified sales opportunities.

That’s what a sales lead management team does via the phone, email, and more. And a Forrester Research study says that businesses which put a priority on lead qualification and nurturing have 50 percent more sales-ready prospects and reduce their cost-per-lead by 33%.

It seems like this missing link is made of gold. What are these sales lead management teams doing that is multiplying the number of ready-to-buy prospects while cutting marketing costs?

Published in Lead Qualification

Like most B2B marketers, you probably agree that the most successful way to create qualified leads is by using a human touch.

In its study, B2B Marketing found that 40% of marketers believe telemarketing is the best vehicle for generating high-quality leads. That’s second only to live, in-person events that were cited by 43% of respondents. Even in the era of online marketing these traditional tactics, where we talk one-on-one with prospects, stand out.

It’s one thing, however, to know that you need to add telemarketing to your marketing initiatives. It’s another to make it happen.
Selling telemarketing to the powers that be and ensuring it pays off comes down to executing it the right way — the way that’s most likely to maximize ROI.

While some marketing leaders want to test the telemarketing waters by doing it in-house, this isn’t a fair test. Why? Because statistics show that the ROI of in-house telemarketing isn’t as high as when it’s outsourced. Read more.

Published in Tele-Services

Why Your Script Doesn’t Work

If you’re not getting results from your business-to-business telemarketing calls, it’s time to throw out the script. It might sound scary because your script is your crutch. It makes you feel completely comfortable that you’ll know exactly what to say when you get on the phone.

But while your crutch helps you walk more smoothly through the call, if you’re not succeeding, you’re walking in the wrong direction.

How can a perfectly crafted script lead to poor results?

Published in Lead Generation

According to International Data Corporation (IDC), the market for marketing automation technology will expand from $3.2 billion in 2010 to $4.8 billion in 2015. It’s not surprising given that this technology can automate all the routine aspects of sales lead generation, lead nurturing, lead scoring, customer retention, testing, measuring, and optimizing marketing campaigns.

As amazing as it is, there’s one critical element that’s missing—human beings. That’s right—technology just can’t do everything. Marketing automation is best used for repeat tasks that require no judgment; steps in a process that need to happen like clockwork.

People, of course, have qualities that technology cannot duplicate. They can develop one-on-one relationships with your prospects and customers, ferret out the information you need to qualify leads, and add the judgment required to go beyond lead scoring, which is based only on a sales lead’s actions, and determine whether a lead meets your qualification criteria.

So how do you decide which marketing processes to automate and where you should be using people? Simply follow these two rules. 

Published in Lead Nurturing
Thursday, 10 April 2014 09:21

How to Avoid the Black Hole of Sales Leads

Are Sales Driven by Numbers or Quality?

If you follow the “sales is a numbers game” metaphor, you might think the salesperson who makes the most calls or follows up on 100 percent of the leads that cross his or her desk is the victor clutching all the spoils.

Metaphors (and their literary cousins—proverbs and adages) are convenient ways to define situations clearly. But choose the wrong metaphor and you can be headed for trouble. In the case of playing a pure numbers game with marketing leads, you’re probably hovering on the edge of a black hole— and you know that’s a metaphor for disaster. 

Published in Lead Qualification
Thursday, 03 April 2014 12:44

How to Increase Your B2B Marketing ROI

Companies that Measure Marketing ROI Increase Growth

When it comes to B2B lead generation and determining the top producing marketing activities, ROI matters. A report by the Pedowitz Group says that “ The top-tier of highly effective and efficient marketers calculate ROI or similar financial measures to assess their marketing effectiveness (62% vs. 23% of all other marketers) and are more likely to indicate they are experiencing much greater growth than their competitors (55% vs. 13% of all others).” 

Published in Lead Qualification

If you’ve put together an in-house team to make and receive phone calls as part of your sales and marketing process, you’re probably wondering if you’re getting your money’s worth. Is the program as cost effective as possible? Are you optimizing lead qualification efforts and maximizing your return on investment?

The answer is: Probably not. Why?

Because an in-house team will likely cost your company more than outsourced teleservices. And more often than not, in-house teams are not as effective. Let’s examine this in greater detail. 

Published in Lead Qualification
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