The ability to acquire leads through paid search is important, but the ability of your sales force to convert these leads directly impacts the return on investment of a campaign.
For many companies, the goal of campaigns is to generate leads. What is much more difficult is getting qualified leads at the lowest possible cost.
THE PROBLEM WITH SALES
Sometimes it is said that paid research simply did not work for their business, that they were making enough money using other advertising channels to cover their expenses. Ultimately, they did not generate any profit from Adwords.
On our side, we knew we had great campaigns for their service. They generated (according to our metrics) many more leads than in the past. In fact, we were sending dozens of leads per month when previously, they were only generating 2 or 3.
However, the customer only converted one percent of their prospects. With this conclusion, no doubt Adwords was not the tool to advocate for their situation!
So we started to ask ourselves questions. Did we have the wrong keywords? Was there anything wrong with our approach to advertising? Did the landing page offer what the client is looking for?
The response from the client side was:
“The problem is not the leads. My sales team simply does not know how to “closer”.
This is a problem we had seen several times before. Without sales processes that work in the same direction as marketing, you never get as much profit as you could, so you leave money on the table.
WHY SALES TEAMS HAVE DIFFICULTY
Paid SEO is a great way to get prospects who are highly skilled, but this remains different from many other types of leads.
One must understand the psychology behind the research intentions that always start with something specific. When a person finds an ad, she says, “It sounds like what I want.” She clicks on the ad, looks at the landing page and says, “Yes, I’m interested.” From there, she fills out a form or calls for more information.
As simple as it may seem, it is important to know that these people are actively looking for solutions. They convert because they have a problem they want to solve immediately.
This is very different from other lead generation approaches such as cold calling, TV ads, or even social network ads. In each of these cases, the person is reacting to your content, since it is at a much earlier stage in its decision making process.
In paid search, prospects come into contact with your content. In other words, they are looking for you (which makes them incredibly qualified) … but very often it also means that you are probably not the only solution they are considering.
HOW TO MANAGE SEARCH PROSPECTS
Here are five things that your sales team needs to know about leads on paid searches.
- The response timelapse
Remember, leads are actively searching. They are probably looking at your competitors too. Very often, the sale will go to the first person who can meet the need of the research. You are in a race against time to be the first.
Your leads are much more likely to respond in case of contact within five minutes (vs. after 30 minutes), so that every second that goes increases the chance your lead finds a more interesting competitor, or that he gets distracted By another page.
Your sales team should always respond in less than fifteen minutes. Incoming calls from prospects should never go into your mailbox or wait on hold for too long. These qualified prospects are simply too important to lose them so simply.
- Keep calling
As a general rule, your sales team needs to call a minimum of 8 to 12 attempts over a period of 10 to 14 days. The problem is that most sales representatives try to communicate 1 to 2 times before giving up. So we give up too quickly on a lead that could have converted. Thus, it is in the interest of your sales team (and your company) to make at least a dozen contact attempts before dropping it either by emails, text messages or calls.
- Do not be too selective with your leads
With a steady stream of prospects, representatives sometimes start to choose leads at the expense of others. After all, there are always more prospects, right?
The problem is that these wasted leads cost you dearly. Some sellers can take two to three times more leads than their colleagues, but simply aim for those that are easier to convert. They make a lot of sales but their sales / lead ratio is low and the company actually ends up paying more for prospects wasted than they do on sales.
- Set Guidelines
One of the reasons that paid searches convert is because “searchers” think your business can solve a very specific problem for them. When your sales team contacts them, they are waiting to have this problem dealt with. If the sales force tries to sell them something different from what your marketing promises, potential consumers feel betrayed and lose interest.
So to make sure your sales team meets the expectations of your prospects, sales need to help the marketing team compose the messages from your search ads.
Communicating your paid traffic strategy to your sales team will take some extra work but your sales team will be more efficient … which makes your SEO campaigns even more profitable.
Without a sales team that understands how to handle paid search, you will often find it difficult to make money. Like digital marketing, it is important to understand why sales teams may have trouble converting expensive leads into profitable sales. It is therefore important to align your marketing and sales messages to produce results and enable your company to finally capitalize on the potential of your campaigns.