Sales teams often complain that marketing is not generating enough demand and not supplying them with sales-ready leads.
But there’s another side to this story that would send CEOs through the roof, if they only knew how dysfunctional their sales forces really are.
Exhibit A from LinkedIn:
Jim Hathaway appears to be a serious buyer, as “sales ready” as they come. He’s not just raising his hand in response to a marketing campaign; he’s begging to speak to a knowledgeable salesperson.
And, for some strange reason, he’s being completely ignored.
How often does this happen in your sales organization?
Probably a lot more often than you’d like to admit.
XANT has conducted research on lead response management for years, and we’ve consistently found that sales teams are not meeting the expectations of today’s buyers.
In 2007, Dr. James Oldroyd published the Lead Response Management Study, which showed how little time sales reps have to respond before leads turn “cold.”
The study revealed that if a lead is called within five minutes versus 30 minutes after it’s submitted, that lead is 100 times more likely to be contacted and 21 times more likely to enter the sales cycle.
Response times have improved since 2007, but they still fall well short of established best practices.
XANT conducted ResponseAudits on this year’s Dreamforce participants. The average response time was 37 hours and 25 minutes.
Some leads never get called at all. That’s why buyers like Jim Hathaway are left to wonder what’s wrong with the modern sales organization – and why they end up spending their money with companies that understand the importance of immediate follow-up.
If you don’t have a system in place to ensure your sales team is following up immediately and persistently with qualified prospects, you might want to look into that stat.
To discover how your sales team can follow up immediately with leads, get the free ebook below.
Free eBook: Cold Calling and Sales Prospecting: A Day in the Life of a Top-Performing Sales Rep
In this eBook, we invite you to tour a day in the life of a top performing rep to see how your team can can achieve top performance.
Image credit: ACE Solid Waste Transfer Station