What do Sales Leads, Gold, and a Bald Guy Have in Common?

One of my all-time favourite movies is Glengarry Glen Ross. My favorite scene is when Alec Baldwin, playing the part of a hotshot executive “on a mission of mercy,” bursts into the sales office like a demented tractor, crushing the hapless salespeople’s self-esteem and confidence with reckless abandon. He ends his tirade by offering the demoralized crew a stack of prime leads, only to dash their hopes a moment later.

“These are the Glengarry leads,” he says, holding them out.

“And to you, they are gold.”

He pulls them back.  “And you don’t get them.”

The sequence is exhilarating and horrible to watch, like a car accident you can’t take your eyes off.  The rest of the movie is about the salespeople’s desperation to get those leads. I encourage you to watch it. The performances are fantastic.

The story is fiction, but any salesperson can attest to the value of a good lead. They are gold. And a successful sales organization must have an effective system in place to manage leads.

Leads come from many sources. They’re people we meet at networking events and tradeshows. Referrals from customers, suppliers, associates, partners, and friends.  Inquiries from the web. Each one is a seed of a potentially big opportunity. But these seeds need to be planted and nurtured very soon if they’re to grow.

I heard an analogy that opportunity is like a bald man with a long beard. When he’s facing you, you better grab that beard, because he can turn at any moment, leaving you with nothing to take hold of.  So it goes for leads. You need to convert them quickly because they can disappear at any time. This is particularly true for leads that arrive via your website. The internet brings an expectation of immediate response. You may feel you’re being responsive if you have a policy of answering enquires within 24 hours, or even 2 hours. But in truth, that’s painfully slow and gives potential customers ample time to go elsewhere.  If you want to have the best shot at converting that lead into a sale, set your target response time to five minutes or less.

Do you have a system in place to manage leads? Your leads are gold. Manage and nurture them like the treasures they are.

Greg Kligman is Business Development Manager at CRM Dynamics. He can be reached at [email protected]

Do you want to learn to manage leads better? Come to our free event "Stop Losing Leads" on Oct. 30. Space is limited so register today:

Register for live event:  https://goo.gl/q5pLFL

Register for webinar:  https://goo.gl/TbyZdM

by CRM Dynamics Ltd.

 

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