It's all too easy for sales to blame marketing for a weak pipeline. Sadly changes in marketing campaigns take time to implement and achieve the desired results.
Playing the blame game is ultimately futile. Instead, sales people need to take responsibility for their own pipeline and adopt proactive tactics to strengthen it.
Here’s what I suggest:
- Get to know your prospects better
- Understand what they are communicating to their prospects
- Get a flavour of their messages and focus
There are two simple ways of achieving this:
- Visit their website and register for their marketing e-mails;
- Use Google Alerts to receive an e-mail every time any website is updated with new content including their name or other keywords.
These will give you opportunities to call and chat about their business and the priorities on their agenda. You can add value built around your software solution and achieve a deeper engagement with your prospects.
Also, follow the words of Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush and 'Don't Give Up'!
Remember that 80% of prospects deemed 'bad leads' by sales teams go on to buy within 24 months (SiriusDecisions).
More often than not, it's a timing issue. An early stage enquiry may need more evidence to help build an internal case to support their budget submission. You need to be nurturing their interest with educational content.
Re-visit qualified out prospects every six months and ask yourself 'What can I offer of value to help them?'.
Send them news about your company which may re-awaken their interest. We recently had a case study written about our business by Act-On, our marketing automation partner.
It was entitled 'Terry Forsey Consulting Grew 50% in first year with Act-On'. I sent it to a number of lapsed leads and past clients - this generated three new sales opportunities as a result.