3 Ways to Convert Leads Into Customers
May 14, 2019 | Diego Pineda
This is a guest blog post from Diego Pineda, Senior Content Creator at CloudTask
As marketers, we know that not all leads are created equal. In fact, nearly 80 percent of marketing leads never convert into a closed deal. And yet, many of us are guilty of sending leads to sales that look qualified from the outside—but in reality—don’t perfectly align with their definition of a SQL.
Today, marketers are on the hook for increasing KPIs and revenue-oriented goals. That’s why it’s essential for marketers to accurately score their leads before handing them off to sales. When it comes to scoring leads, we can bucket them in three separate categories:
- Leads that are eagerly seeking the solution you offer, and are ready to buy right off the bat—those are the prospects you’re after.
- Leads that might be interested in your product or solution, but they’re not in a rush to purchase, or they’re exploring other options—those are the prospects you must engage and delight.
- Prospects that stumbled upon your company and don’t really need or want what you sell—those are the prospects you can disqualify right away.
But even after scoring your leads, a marketer’s job isn’t done. The lead nurturing process is really where marketing’s value comes through. This is where marketers can help push top- and middle-of-the-funnel leads through the sales cycle, and get them to a point where they’re ready to have a conversation with sales. Here are three tips to convert your leads into revenue-generating customers.
1. Nurture Your Leads
Build a relationship with your leads and gain their trust so they’ll be more likely to purchase your product or service when they’re ready. It’s also important to keep the conversation going even after you’ve qualified them. The key is to provide value by offering the information they need at the right time.
One way to do this is with an inbound marketing campaign that provides relevant content depending on the stage of the buyer’s journey they’re at. Marketing automation tools are great for this, because they track the lead’s journey and send out emails or notifications when they show signs of engagement (for example, after the lead has downloaded an ebook or requested a demo).
On average, it takes between six and eight content interactions to generate an SQL. And research shows that leads nurtured with personalized content are 20 percent more likely to become an opportunity.
Besides targeted content, try nurturing your leads through timely and customized follow-ups. Remember that you’re getting to know them and their pain points, so make sure you’re providing a customized message that will show the human side of your brand.
2. Respond Quickly
According to Hubspot, the odds of a prospect becoming a qualified lead are 21 times greater when they’re contacted within five minutes, versus 30 minutes. And even a SQL probably has questions that need to be answered quickly in order to prove the value of your product. If they’re deciding between you and a competitor, response time may be the factor that tip the scales in your favor.
One of the ways you can beat your competition in response time is by using live chat. In many cases, an email may take a day or more to get a response, a static form is too impersonal, and a phone call might not get answered. But live chat allows for an immediate response in a very personal way.
Studies have shown that more than 42 percent of people prefer live chat over other contact methods because it prevents them from being placed on hold. In fact, customers feel most satisfied during their buyer’s journey when using a live chat feature (92 percent), compared to voice (88 percent), email (85 percent), and even Facebook messaging (84 percent).
At CloudTask, we’ve found that a SQL that chats with a member of our sales team is 2-3 times more likely to become a customer, compared to a lead that just fills out a traditional lead form.
3. Ask for the Sale
This one might be obvious, but sometimes deals aren’t closed because the sales representative simply didn’t ask for the sale. There are many reasons why this happens—sometimes it’s fear of getting a negative response, or insecurity and confusion about when and how to ask. Here’s a hint: The best time to ask for the sale is when you have nurtured your lead and answered all their questions. In other words, when you have done your homework with the two points above.
Start by asking open-ended questions (What do you think? How do you feel about that?) to gauge how the lead is feeling about the deal. Then, ask the closing question (you want a yes or a no) and don’t be afraid of sealing the deal. If you confidently demonstrated the benefits and added value of your product or service, they should be ready to buy.
When it comes to leads, more is not better—better leads is better. It’s not beneficial to be generating hundreds or even thousands of leads if they’re not qualified, or if they’re unlikely to convert into customers that drive revenue. By following a few simple steps and investing in your nurturing process, you can increase your conversions and get real business results.
About the Author
Diego Pineda is a Senior Content Creator at CloudTask, a managed workforce provider for growing companies looking for B2B Sales, Customer Success and Customer Support solutions. Their mission is to find prospects, nurture leads, close deals, and satisfy customers, to enable you to reach your business goals.