Optimize to connect, everyone wins

This is essentially a follow up to previous posts describing the massive conversion uplifts we see from customers who have Lead Development teams.

Lead Development teams are described as inside sales groups that are devoted solely to following up on and qualifying inquiries for the sales teams.

Creating this process is your first step. Look, you want your sales guys closing deals and growing business. The game of getting people on the phone is tedious and time-consuming. Marketers beware: If you are sending your inquiries directly to field reps they are NOT getting the attention they deserve. The prospects are busy, they do not spend all day waiting by the phone for vendors to call. If you are selling to IT –just check out your IT guy as he runs around all day putting out fires. Tracking people down is a MAJOR part of the sales battle. And connecting is the thing, our job is to get our top sales guys on the phone or in person with the RIGHT people.

Funny “connecting” side note: My buddy used to sell freight shipping. His trick to get people to talk to them was to go onsite and ask the receptionist if he could use the conference room to make a call. He would then go in there and call the President of the company and say: “Hi, this is ______, I am in Conference A hoping to talk to you” . Amazing.

Well as marketing automation continues to pick up steam, what I call Connect Automation has arisen. Now, the vendors don’t call it that, but I do…because at its rawest level, I want my lead development team or if you insist, the sales people, on the phone with people not leaving voicemails, talking to receptionists and dialing.

So, here are some tips from the land of Connect Automation:

1. Autodialer 2.0: Connect and Sell — these guys have a call center and proprietary technology where they will reach out get to your contact through admins, etc and then when you have a connect, patch you through. What a great call. Plant your guy there for an hour and get some connects going.

2. Email as a tool to Connect 2.0: Sales Genius — They basically let you plant a “bug” in an email you send which when someone clicks on a link in your email, alerts the sales guy. An example, you send an email to a guy you are trying to reach that has a link to your site or to some compelling materials. The minute he clicks, your guys know as it send info to his “Genius Tracker”. Voila, you have a guy currently at his desk looking at your collateral. Time to call and better odds of both connecting and connecting with something to talk about.

3. Email and chat as tool to Connect 3.0: Eloqua — A lot bigger with alot more options. Sales genius on steroids. Sales Genius lets people click to chat, but in Eloqua when a guy you emailed hits the website, you can pop a chat at him. Another CONNECT. Great call.

In sum:

Step 1: Get yourself a Lead Development Team

Step 2: ARM THEM.

Here is what you will get:

1. Higher lead conversion rates

2. Better lead quality data

3. Happy sales guys.

4. Happy marketing guys.

5. Happy CEO.

MYTH:: If you will build it, you will connect.

If you believe me, do it right. You must thoughtful about everything: messaging (vms and live connects), emails, autodialers if appropriate, CRM process.

One of the sales 2.0 technologies available today is what i call “Connect Automation”. The vendors don’t call themselves that, but I do. As marketing automation continues to pick up steam, we will see more and more of these types of applications hit the market. Today there are a few that standout:

1 Genius.com:

Craig Rosenberg is the Funnelholic. He loves sales, marketing, and things that drive revenue. Follow him on Google+ or Twitter