It's Time to Add Lead Generation to Your Sales Strategy

Face it, your company needs lead generation. Your sales, marketing and lead generation teams should understand how to work together so that your investment pays off. With the fast-paced flow of business these days, it’s nearly impossible to get everything done on your own and you’ll need some help along the way. Think of lead generation as the general manager of a NFL football team; you are the coach. Both sides have critical roles within the organization but each of you has to focus on your specific task in order for things to fall into place effectively.

The general manager assembles a staff of scouts that find the most talented players across football whether that’s in college, a semi-pro league or right within the NFL. That’s where Sales-Link’s staff comes into play. Our “scouts” are scouring the phones and internet each day making sure they find the best match for your products and/or services. The general manager will then identify the players that will be a good fit for your organization.

Keeping on with the football theme, there have been coaches that also wanted the GM title as well and have failed miserably. To be honest, we all have a lot on our plates in this “need it now” time in our lives. Hiring a lead generator allows for sales to do what they do well i.e., sell and you to keep the momentum of deals closing and the pipeline growing. Lead generators are hunters and they like to move quickly on the next best players on the rise. The same group cannot do a great job on everything so assemble your players and manage them. If everyone does their job and comes together as a team, the final product will be just as you imagined it.

Today’s lead generation firms are great because they are former sales people who understand what it means to be on the firing line. You need hunters who left their egos at the door. They understand the concept of “what have you done for me lately?”

Lead generators forget about the million dollar deal they helped you pull in yesterday because that is old news. Working with your lead generation partner setting those high goals will make you want to achieve more for your company. When all is said and done, you’ll be including the lead generation group as a key component in your sales strategy.

It is important to invest in lead generation because it goes far beyond the impressive marketing groups. The marketers of yesterday are now being asked to understand lead generation and many of them are required to do it, but many don’t have firing line sales experience in their background. Many are savvy marketing people who have done their job via press releases, advertisements and promotions; but never had to answer to the CEO why there were no new leads for the week. Sales-centric organizations seem to do very well with understanding lead generation and how to rank leads.

It is all about sales. The salesperson’s first interaction, first appearance, first presentation—your actions need to be perfect and you need to be on your game. Show interest in the problem before quoting fees. Show conviction for your product and/or service to the lead but interact immediately. Don't delay. If you do this before you meet face-to-face, you have already got them in the palm of your hand.

How can a salesperson help a lead generation company get further inspired to do more for sales? Let me share what we look for:

  • Is the salesperson really interested in what they are selling?
  • Does the salesperson know about the competition?
  • Does the salesperson follow up on everything moving just because they like people?
  • Does the salesperson know the history of their company, talk about it often and include information in content routinely?
  • Does the salesperson understand how far his/her company will go for a client and what are definite no fly zones?
  • Does the salesperson go the distance to find support documentation/content that further sells the client?

Lead generators are inspired to work with salespeople who have:

  • Persistence (Are you hungry?)
  • Business smarts (But not too much for the prospects in your industry)
  • A sense of whether they are a hunter or gatherer?
  • A sense of how to follow-up
  • Well-rounded social skills
  • Use a system appropriate for lead generation

Good salespeople and CEOs know how to work with their lead generation partner. They work them hard, stay in touch and most importantly, keep them engaged! They listen to what their lead generators are asking for and ensure they get what content they need.

If the lead generation team is an outside group, trust them. They know they have to work for their money and they want to please you. THEY NEED YOU and will genuinely tell you how you are doing if you ask!