Lead Management Best Practices
If you’ve been following along up until this point, you should have your campaigns up and running by now, and hopefully have some positive responses roll in. While a lot of the hard work of actually running your campaigns is now finished, the sales process is really just beginning.
Working cold leads like this is a MUCH different process than taking inbound referrals - if you treat these leads like referrals, you’re almost certain to never make any sales.
While a deep, high-level discussion on sales practices is out of scope for this guide, we will cover some specific points as it pertains to getting people from responding positively on LinkedIn to taking an actual phone call with you.
Here are our best tips for keeping your conversion from positive response > phone call high.
LinkedIn is not a place to sell - Just because someone responds back positively to your outreach message, doesn’t mean it’s a good time to pitch them. Your only goal while on LinkedIn is to get them off of LinkedIn. I often start by asking them when is a good time to have a call, and make it clear I’ll be providing value on the call. If they don’t respond to that, I’ll follow up in a few days to see if there’s a better way we can get in touch first.
LinkedIn does usually provide a person’s email, but we suggest only using this if the prospect hasn’t replied for about a week on LinkedIn, or if they ask you to email them more info. You can creep people out by going straight into their inbox too quickly.
Use a CRM as your dashboard, not LinkedIn - LinkedIn is a mess. Point blank. If you try to use LinkedIn as your sole method of managing all of your outreach, you’ll quickly go crazy. For our clients, we enter all of their leads into a CRM for them to work out of, as scrolling through hundreds of messages in your LinkedIn inbox each day simply isn’t feasible.
If you're running your own campaigns, you’ll still need to extract these leads out of LinkedIn on a daily basis, but you should be using your CRM to remind you who to follow up with and when. Then you just head over to LinkedIn, type their name and send a message.
LISTEN - When you get on calls with people from LinkedIn, you’ll probably want to explain way your service is so great. The issue is, people aren’t necessarily looking for your service. They are on the phone with you because they believe you can help, but they don’t necessarily know your service is what they need.
Instead, ask questions about what they are currently struggling with and listen to their answers. You’ll be able to figure out exactly what their problems are, and you should already know how to solve it. Getting them to discuss the problem first, then tying to a solution to it works infinitely better than presenting the solution and then trying to convince them they have the problem that it solves.
Use a scheduling tool - Going back and forth trying to set up a meeting at a mutual time is no fun. It’s even less fun if your prospect only checks LinkedIn once or twice a week. Cut down on the back and forth by using a scheduling tool such as Calendly. All you need to do is send them the link and they can choose the time that's most convenient for them. It then adds the event to both of your calendars and sends out reminders.
Don’t dismiss leads who don’t show immediate interest - Lots of salespeople see a response from a lead that indicates they are no longer interested in purchasing the service they’re being offered, and the salesperson declares them as a dead lead. This thought process works if you only care about your own salary that’s based off the commissions you make - but doesn’t make as much sense if you’re involved in other areas of the company.
Come up with some form of autoresponder or other type of campaign you can enter people into, so you stay top of mind. People will remember you and reach out when it’s the right time to utilize your service, or you can pitch them on lower priced offers in the meantime that may be a better fit.
People responding to your connection request are NOT leads - One of the things we often need to train our clients to do, is not to treat people responding back to our first messages as leads. Our main method starts with a connection request, then thanks them 24 hours later, before they move into a drip campaign. This means if someone responds back to the connection request or thank you message, they don’t have enough relevant information about you to become a lead yet.
Usually one of two things is happening if a prospect replies back during this stage. First is they might just be inviting you to a networking call - this is fine if you have the time for it, but you should be producing enough high quality leads on LinkedIn that getting on networking calls won’t be a priority for you.
More likely is that this person is trying to get you on the phone to pitch you on something. You haven’t yet given them enough information about yourself for them to want to hear what you have to say - so you can assume you’ll be pitched once you get on the phone with them.
Still stuck? Need some help getting your campaigns set up or just want us to run them for you entirely? Set up a free 30 minute consultation and let’s discuss what your best options are.