Step right up folks and witness an all-new, never before seen, brand-spanking new digital marketing technology that is easy-to-use, designed with the marketer in a mind and guaranteed to bring you marketing success or your money back! Said no one. Ever. But, like a moth to a flame, marketers flock to the new, shiny object with hopes of increasing ROI, impressing the boss and adding another skill to their resume.
If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck – it’s a duck.
Don’t be fooled by fancy names and sexy interfaces. At the end of the day, lead generation and acquisition tools are just that – top of the funnel marketing technologies that don’t drive any real value. In today’s “Age of the Consumer,” the funnel approach is outdated as prospective customers can enter the sales cycle just about anywhere.
Research shows that 57% of the buying process is done prior to engaging with sales. Your prospective customers are doing their research, reading reviews and getting to know your company all their own without any coaxing from marketing or sales. However, when sales are down the first area of improvement identified by sales executives is the top of the funnel.
“We need more leads!”
More leads = more opportunities = more sales, right? Wrong. Inundating sales representatives with more leads, especially poor quality leads, can actually worsen the situation.
No matter how shiny or glittery a “new” technology is, the outdated funnel approach to lead generation will always flood sales pipelines with too many low-value leads that won’t deliver sales or marketing ROI. Consider this scary statistic from Marketing Sherpa: 79% of marketing leads never convert into sales. Organizations are, to be blunt, wasting money on marketing and sales lead generation programs that don’t work.
What sales teams need are qualified leads that have been carefully and consistently nurtured until they are ready to be delivered as high-value, sales-ready opportunities. Representatives can then focus their time more effectively on the most likely buyers.
By taking a “less is more” approach and engaging in strategic prospect development, it’s possible to attract and acquire the best opportunities. This renews the value of marketing lead generation programs, since sales will start receiving leads they can actually use and convert into customers. In addition, sales efficiency improves as sales managers can accomplish more with fewer resources, and top reps can focus on what they do best: closing deals.
Interested in learning more about lead management and marketing success? Download the Action Guide to Lead Management Success, a free whitepaper to get started!