There were a couple of blog posts recently about “selling the conversation” – see Dale Underwood’s Effective B2B Lead Generation Means Selling the Conversation and Trish Bertuzzi’s follow-up Do Your Team’s Voice Mails Sell the Conversation. This is a very similar blogosphere conversation to the brief “pounce” controversy which I weighed in on in my posts, To Pounce or Not to Pounce, That Is the Question and To Phone or Not to Phone, There Is No Question and a long time ago in Optimize to Connect, Everyone Wins.
To be clear, it is my firm belief that demand generation is the art of getting the right person connected with the right sales rep at the right time. Just take that in for a second. Marketers ALWAYS try to achieve too much with their campaigns and in most cases they are trying to sell the product when what they really need to do is sell the next step. I have said this a million times and I will say it again: The number one tool for conversion is the PHONE. You can run campaigns until the cows come home and they will fail if your lead qualification or sales team is not on the phone converting them.
Here are some examples of how I think about this:
1. Marketing automation: All highfalutin ideas aside, one of the greatest things about this movement is increasing the likelihood of conversations with right people at the right time
2. Pre-connect scripts and emails: Instead of trying to sell the product, sell the connect.
3. Opening script: Instead of trying to sell the product, sell the fact that you want five minutes of their time.
When you analyze the nature of nonconverting leads of marketing programs, the vast majority of those are going unconverted because they “could not connect.” If you’re pushing the right leads into the pipeline, conversion rates will automatically rise when you improve connect rates.