How to increase sales? How to increase lead conversion? How to sell more to existing customers? These are some of the most common and frequent questions discussed in business strategy and sales meetings. Thanks to the internet economy, businesses have multiple sources for generating new leads. The channels to advertise, market and acquire customers keep on increasing. As new leads pile on, we tend to lose track of old leads and prospects. Not all leads convert in the first or the second attempt. According to a study by the Brevet Group, 80% of sales require 5 follow-up calls after the first meeting. 44% of sales reps give up after 1 follow-up. The 90-60-30 sales communication strategy is a framework for rechurning old leads and staying in touch with customers and prospects.
Why do you need a sales communication strategy?
On the last count, I had a list of more than 2500 relevant connections in my lead dashboard. Almost 60% of these are prospective buyers. How can I ensure I do not miss out on any sales opportunity?
The challenge – Once prospects reject the initial offer and stop responding, I have not been writing to them quite often. As I keep acquiring new leads, I lose focus of the old leads. I risk becoming irrelevant to my prospects. Does this sound familiar?
The solution: the 90 / 60 / 30 sales communication strategy.
How does this sales strategy work?
- The first step is to add all connections and prospects to a list and categorize them. If you use a CRM or lead tracking sheet, you already have a list. We would need to divide all contacts in two sets of categories. First category is the “type of contact”. For instance, you may categorize them as “prospective client, industry connection, friends and family, vendor etc.” if you have a homogeneous list of contacts such as all your connections on LinkedIn. If all the contacts are acquired business leads, you may categorize them based on industry, hierarchy, geography etc. This category would help in creating sub-lists for email campaigns. The second category is for the 90 / 60 / 30 rule of communication.
- High Priority contacts and prospective clients would be included in the “30 days category”. For these set of leads, set alerts to ensure that you speak to each of these contacts at least once every 30 days. While they may receive emails as part of the email list, it is important that you maintain a personal contact by calling them. It is equally important to actively follow these contacts on various social and business networks. This is what I call “digital stalking”.
- Keep a track of their birthdays and anniversaries
- Social media posts they update, like or share
- Any relevant company updates such as awards, notable mentions or new product launch
- Job changes or promotions etc. Such events give you a valid reason to contact them. Most prospects if not all would certainly acknowledge.
- The second category of contacts are for the “60 days” category. These would be prospects who do not have an immediate need to buy your products or services. Some of these may not be direct buyers but could refer your services to their network. There may be prospects who would have denied previous sales attempts. Along with regular email campaigns, ensure you make a personal call to each of these at least once every 60 days.
- “90 days” is the third category which includes relevant industry connections, executives working in client organizations who are not actively involved in purchase decisions, distributors, influencers and all other connections you feel should receive regular updates about your company, products and services. Schedule a call once every quarter for contacts in this category.
How does this sales strategy help?
The process may seem simple. However we must remember that most complex problems have the simplest of solutions. If it isn’t simple, you will not be able to follow the process for a long time. Following the 90-60-30 days communication cycle ensures you never lose contact with all prospects. Quite often we fail to initiate a personal conversation with prospective clients. Communication is the key to establishing a long term strategic relationship with existing and prospective clients. Persistent communication increases sales opportunities.
It is important we don’t leave things to chance. Add alerts for the next contact date in your CRM or lead tracker based on the lead category. The prospects may not have an immediate requirement for your services. However, whenever a need arises, you will have a recall value due to a persistent communication pattern.
Sales is less art and more science. For consistent and predictable outcomes, businesses need to follow well defined sales processes and practices. If you are in the process of setting up sales goals and would like a review of your sales practices, register now for the Good Sales Practices assessment.
Good Sales Practices Maturity Model
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