Inside Sales Best Practices – The Web Marketing “Mass Disconnect” Continues

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Sales and Marketing DisconnectSales industry researchers CSOInsights stated recently that after a “flat” budget year in 2009, marketing budgets are increasing in 2010 and beyond, and that the top three items for additional budget allocations were:

  1. Web site design/content (65% stated they were increasing budget allocation)
  2. Email marketing (54%)
  3. Web search optimization (51%)

Great news, right? Good to hear that the economy is picking up, and that smart companies are following current trends in effective Web lead generation.

So why did my “Massive Disconnect” alarm start going off almost immediately?

Here’s why: because indicators show that the majority of companies are terribly, horribly un-optimized to take advantage of the leads their Web marketing activities generate.

Even though the article states that 75% of sales organizations now use a CRM tool of some kind to track and monitor sales activities, research shows that most of them still aren’t following good lead management practices to get the most from their increased marketing spend.

For example, how many of the companies surveyed are currently responding to their incoming, “hot” Web leads in 10 minutes or less? Because if they aren’t, this research shows they’re potentially losing 20 times the total effectiveness of the leads they generate. Even worse, the research shows that 45% of companies don’t even respond AT ALL to new Web-generated leads—let alone in 10 minutes or less as best practices suggest.

So let me get this straight: the top three increased marketing budget allocations for the next year are all based on Web marketing—yet nearly half of companies don’t respond AT ALL to incoming Web leads.

Hmmmm.

Furthermore, of the companies surveyed, how many call/contact attempts are they making to reach their new Web leads? Research shows that barely 7 percent of companies make at least 6 total contact attempts by phone and email to incoming Web leads.

Yet according to The Bridge Group, the average number of “touches” needed to convert a new inquiry into a prospect is somewhere between 6 and 7—and dead “touches” like no-answer phone calls don’t even count towards that number.

So tell me again—why are companies increasing Web marketing budgets when statistically only 7 percent of them are even meeting the absolute, barest of bare minimums to get the value they want from their leads?

My “Massive Disconnect” alarm just went into overdrive.

Is it any wonder that in spite of progress, Propelling Brands says that sales and marketing still have a long way to go to align their processes?

Author: Ken Krogue |
Summary of Ken Krogue’s Forbes articles

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