That's a sales lead...really?

It’s an age-old battle that continues today – what really is a ‘lead’? Your marketing manager might argue that all the enquiries that called through from the latest ad are leads, while your sales manager might not be comfortable calling someone a lead until they are going for their wallets.

This gap between marketing and sales definition of leads is not new, but it is an important argument to put to bed in order to maximise the revenue potential of your business. Follow these few simple steps to ensure your marketing and sales people are on the same team:

  1. Ask sales what an ideal prospect looks like – what are the common characteristics and traits? Write this down and have both marketing and sales agree.
  2. Work out your lead generation ‘funnel’ – starting with the broad market and working through the common sales progression steps.
  3. Agree the point of handover with sales – at what point are sales happy to take over the progression of a lead? For most, it will be around the stage that marketing have been able to get the prospect to acknowledge they have the right problem and are looking for a solution. This is achieved through outbound tools such as emails, survey and telemarketing.
  4. The point is that enquiries aren’t leads, and giving a bunch of enquires to sales just wastes their time and negatively impacts their motivation. Make sure that marketing understand their role and to what stage they need to progress an opportunity so that sales can sales can close more quickly and more often.