Why You Should Never Let Sales Reps Touch Aging Leads

In-house cold calling can be costly and tie up your sales team with unqualified leads. Turn to Blue Valley for telemarketing.

A report by Zoominfo revealed that 53% of companies spend up to half of their marketing budget on lead generation.  But the status of most leads generated by sales and marketing organizations in the last twelve months has changed because of Covid-19.  You may think your leads from earlier this year are wasted, but that’s not the case.  We can show you how to use those leads and experience revenue growth faster.

As the impact of Covid-19 took hold of the economy in the spring of 2020, many companies saw their investment in lead generation as a total loss as they watched opportunities evaporate. Leads that represented prospective clients went radio silent, actionable leads with great potential turned cold overnight.  Most of the leads lost their value because of budget cuts, decision-makers and influencers who either lost their jobs or moved to new or different positions, and projects that were placed on hold for various reasons. 

B2B sales teams tiered chasing ghosts flagged them as “dead” and stopped following up and nurturing those leads. Most sales teams turned their focus on starting to generate new leads from scratch.  Many companies have now started working on compiling new ideas and messaging or launching content strategies designed to generate new leads.

Coming up with creative ideas to generate business during Covid-19 is a smart idea. 

However, neglecting the older leads is a big mistake. It could mean leaving money on the table. We will show why and offer a risk-free process to resurrect older leads and turn them into actionable leads your sales team will be glad to contact. This process while limited to the number of leads your company generated in the last 12 months, is a more cost-effective process compared to any new lead generation process you can put in place.

The Facts About Lead Nurturing

Businesses who nurture leads make 50% more sales at a cost of 33% less than non-nurtured prospects. [Forrester Research]

79% of marketing leads never convert into sales. Lack of nurture is the main cause for this. [Marketing Sherpa]

Nurtured leads produce a 20% increase in sales opportunities versus other leads. [DemandGen Report]

80% of opportunities require five follow-up calls after a meeting to convert. [The Marketing Donut]

Companies that have mastered lead nurturing have 9% more sales reps making quota. [CSO Insights]

42% of B2B marketing professionals state that a lack of quality data is their biggest barrier to lead generation (LinkedIn Group Partner).

Lead generation outsourcing is 43% more efficient than generating leads in-house because lead generation companies have more expertise [Fearless Competitor].

Nurturing Leads You Already Generated

According to HubSpot, 65% of businesses consider traffic and lead generation as their most significant marketing challenge. A lead generated through digital marketing averages around $25 per lead, but companies may consider those obtained in the past twelve months as dead ends.

Your organization already spent significant time and resources building relationships and nurturing leads in the last part of 2019 and early 2020. Rather than starting over, why not revisit those leads that you were nurturing in the months leading up to the appearance of Covid-19?

There’s Good News There are a lot of discouraging headlines and ominous predictions, but one piece of positivity is ready for your sales teams: your 2020 lead nurturing efforts should not be considered a lost cause.

Sure, some of your opportunities are likely lost, but not permanently. Companies that strategically approach their lead nurturing program throughout 2020 will gain an advantage over competitors. And there’s reason to use your existing 2019-2020 list of leads, as part of your lead generation plans, and not just start over.

The Bucket Strategy There is still plenty of life in the leads you’ve already generated if you have the right strategy for optimizing them. For instance, think about taking your existing leads your sales team is on and nurturing them longer, allowing our process to reclassify them and then place the leads into three buckets:

Bucket One: Actionable leads. Whether the business has been less impacted by Covid-19, or they are simply taking a more forward-thinking approach, these are your active leads. These are people and companies identified as near-term sales opportunities.  Decision-makers and/or influencers are identified, budgets are in place and the time frame is clear.

Bucket Two: Potential future leads – This group includes companies that you are thinking of as more of a long-term nurturing relationship. They may be dealing with budget cuts, personnel reorganization, or a hold on projects for one reason or another. You are going to want to interact with them and send them appropriately timed content, but you are not looking to close a deal in 2020. Decision-makers and/or influencers are identified, budgets are being set, but timing is not immediate and more likely these are for the first part of 2021.

Bucket Three: Dead leads – These are companies that have gone out of business or are facing devastating circumstances that will likely cause their closure. They should be considered dead leads. No future nurturing or follow-up is needed.

Closing Your Lead Nurturing Gap With Outsourced Assistance

If your company generated several thousand leads (or more) in the last 12-18 months, do not leave the task of determining in which bucket each of your older leads belongs to your sales team. First, their time is too valuable. They need to be closing sales. Second, sales teams are not effective at calling, emailing and calling again to follow up with prospects to determine whether they are an actionable lead.

Instead, choose an effective flat rate solution from Blue Valley Marketing. When you send us leads that you generated in the last 12 to 18 months, we will return them, organized by priority. You will find out:

  • Which companies are ready to make an investment in 2020
  • Which companies will be ready to make an investment early in 2021
  • Leads that are still interested but should be contacted at a later time
  • Which leads are no longer active and should be removed from your sales funnel

To learn more about how to strategically take those 2020 B2B lead nurturing efforts and turn them into measurable growth, contact us at Blue Valley Marketing.

Last Updated on April 5, 2022 by Ronen Ben-Dror

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