Note from the Editors: Either you can pay a small price to read this article or you can pay a big price for ignoring this advice.
When it comes to sales prospecting, I’ve found that there are seven rules that really make all the difference between success and scraping by. The majority of these rules come from our famous Lead Response Management study we did with Dr. James Oldroyd. Here’s a quick summary of the seven rules.
Rule 1: Immediacy
Research shows that a lead that is contacted within five minutes has a contact rate that is 100x higher versus waiting even 30 minutes. Also, the qualification rate is 21x higher if you call back within the same time frame.
Rule 2: Persistency
The average sales rep only makes 1.3 phone calls/lead before giving up. If you only call a lead once, you wring 37 percent of the value of your lead. Ideally, sales reps should be making six calls/lead. With six calls, you get 90 percent of the value from your leads.
Rule 3: Optimize Calls
As a best practice, ask your leads when the best time to contact them is. This can save sales reps a lot of wasted time. If a lead wants to be contacted, they will tell you when is most convenient for them.
Rule 4: Time of Day
The best time to contact a lead is between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. or 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. The worst time of day to attempt contact is during the lunch hour. Make sure your sales reps are being most productive during these times.
Rule 5: Day of Week
Equally as important as time of day, research has shown that the day of the week also plays a role in contact ratios. Wednesdays and Thursdays are the best days of the week for contacting sales leads, while Tuesdays are the worst.
When should sales meetings be? Tuesdays, during lunchtime.
Rule 6: Direct-Dial Numbers
Steve Richard at Vorsight did some awesome research on the subject of direct-dial numbers. From the study, we learned that reps who gather direct-dial numbers schedule dramatically more appointments. It seems obvious, but sales reps aren’t doing this.
Rule 7: Leverage Technology
Technology has dramatically increased the effectiveness of a sales team. At InsideSales.com, we have many different technologies available for our lead response dialing technology. One of my favorites is a product called LocalPresence. If you’re calling a lead in New York from San Jose, LocalPresence will display a New York area code (212) on your lead’s Caller ID. Our research has shown that displaying a local number creates a 57.8% increase in the odds of that lead answering the phone.
Well, there you have it. What other “rules” have you found that help increase the productivity and efficiency of your sales team?
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About Ken Krogue
Ken Krogue is the president and founder of InsideSales.com, the global leader in cloudbased sales acceleration technologies and solutions. Ken has more than 24 years of experience in sales, development and marketing in both domestic and international markets and is a key thought leader for the inside sales industry. Find out how InsideSales.com accelerates sales through science at www.insidesales.com.