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Today’s consumers rely on the social media channels to research on the products or services that they wish to purchase in the near future. It’s a competitive business out there and if a small business has to be successful, it has to have its sales and marketing strategies in place to convert the prospects into leads and leads to warm leads and finally close the sales. In short, the strategies have to outdo that of the competitors.

In most boot straps, its the sales department that handle the entire sales cycle, i.e. prospecting to closing. While a few small businesses have a marketing team to generate leads that is later passed on to sales team. These two teams are at loggerheads with one another where the sales department blames the marketing team for not generating good leads while the marketing team hits back by saying that sales reps are handling the leads well enough to close the sales

Integrate a right CRM
CRMKeeping in mind the problems faced by the marketing and sales departments of the small and medium-sized enterprises, many sales and marketing tool development companies such as Apptivo have worked towards bridging the gap between the sales and marketing departments by introducing functionalities to make it easier for both the teams to retrieve, append and update the lead data. The CRM software enhances the capability of the sales development representatives to perform better at closing deals.

Importance of having Sales Development Representatives(SDR)

When a right CRM is put in place, the sales reps can dedicate their time and effort in contacting the prospects and convert them into qualifying lead and finally hand them over to the closer/account executives. The sales representatives have to work in tandem with the sales as well as the marketing team. If a small business wants to improve the turnover by increasing the sales, it’s advisable to have a separate prospection and closing team. Here are a few pointers to why to a business should have a separate Sales Development Team.

  • Prospecting and closing sales are not the same trade- Factors such as awareness, brand image are some of the factors that come into play. The responsibility of the sales rep is to generate interest, the need for the product and building trust. only after the lead shows interest do we move to the qualification stage. All this needs superior organization skills, perseverance and a great deal of creativity
  • Superior ROI- Account executive(closers) are hired to close deals. Naturally, they are expensive. They should not be wasting their resources in going after leads that are not interested. Instead their priority should be creating urgency, managing objections, customizing the product to each customer’s requirements, obtaining and maximizing the deal. The marketing team gives a Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL), that is a warm lead, a lead who is the key decision maker of an organization, to the sales team. A sales closure happens only when MQL is converted into SQL (Sales qualified lead). Here the incentives are given to the marketing team only for the quality opportunities they hand over to the sales team.
  • Structured sales funnel-better revenues- The rate of closures is high when an organization has structured sales funnel. For instance, only if you have a strategy and a dedicated sales team to handle the inbound leads in form of enquiries over the phone or through contact forms on the website will you be able to convert them into opportunities.
  • Optimization and management of the leads becomes easier- Measuring the performance of the sales and marketing teams becomes easier if prospecting and closing are done by separate teams. Identifying a problem, isolating a process becomes simpler when prospecting and closing is not done by the same team.

Tips to close Warm Leads

Closure of a qualified and warm leads is an important part of a sale. Its also a delicate one. Sales team should take advantage of inbound sales leads since the prospect made an effort to get in touch with the organization. This means the prospect has an interest in the products/services provided by the firm. however, this does not necessarily mean that the prospect can be converted into a qualified lead.

Be Helpful

Being helpful towards clients is the initial step of the inbound method methodology: attraction. To make progress with leads you should provide answers to the queries they have related to your field and area of expertise. Selling is about aiding the lead from the starting stage to the final stage.

Offer Relevant Content

Pushing the lead through the sales pipeline needs quality content to be supplied to address pre-close queries. This stage of the purchases should be tailored as per your business and what you offer.

Pay attention to prospect’s grievances
One technique to goad customers through the pipeline is to listen to their grievances. Often these issues are why the lead approached you. Take note of their problems and provide solutions. It is imperative that you pay attention to the client’s outpourings during the closing process.

Provide quality exposure prior to the sale

Supplying content before the sale is a good technique. However if you and the client will be associated for a long period of time then it is a good idea to give glimpses of how you go about your business and the quality of your infrastructure. This could include a tour of your company, interacting with key workers and more. The lead will then feel more comfortable and have more trust in your offerings.

Provide superior service subsequent to the sale

Do not consider any lead as a one off thing. Businesses tend to ignore leads after the sale is closed. Avoid doing that. Stay in touch even after the sale and be no different in the level of service delivered. This is a great technique to obtain referrals as well as repeat business.

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