Are you struggling to figure out the best way to generate more sales leads that you are confident you can capitalize on?
Sales lead generation is a constant pressure to generate quality leads and properly nurture them as they become true opportunities for sales. The good news is, there are techniques to implement and tools available to make outside sales lead generation easier, faster, and more accessible than ever before!
Let’s break down how to generate more sales leads. More importantly, quality sales leads you can capitalize on more easily.
Best Ways To Generate Better Leads
1. Expand Lead Generation Efforts Into New Industry Verticals
What do you do when you reach the point of being a trusted name in a particular industry segment and are running out of fresh leads? You shift your lead generation focus to a new type of target.
Expanding to another vertical market or niche market opens up a brand new pool of potential customers who are the most likely to need your products or solutions. It’s a way of segmenting your broad audience down to a few specifically targeted industries or demographics.
To maximize your efforts in a new vertical, you want to look for a vertical that has a mix of high demand, a potential for high income, and low competition.
With a vertical sales marketing approach, you are reaching out to a specific target niche who you are confident needs your product or service already. You tailor a customized purpose-driven sales approach to those specific leads and have a pool of new sales leads with a higher chance of conversion.
“By becoming a clear leader in a particular vertical market, you are able to set a standard of performance for anyone else who tries
to encroach on that specific market.”
You have a lot of control over your sales tactics and marketing with a vertical market approach versus a broad “serve everyone” horizontal approach. The key to generating more outside sales leads is to generate quality leads. By going vertical, you can become a thought-leader and best-in-class solution for the new target vertical market.
2. Optimize Your Route To Engage More Leads On The Road
Once you’ve determined who you want to reach it’s time to determine where you want to reach. The goal is to reach as many quality leads and opportunities as you can at a time. But, in a given day there’s only so much time to do that. It is important to make your time as effective as possible
This means that planning out your day and pinpointing who and where you need to go is a key strategy towards boosting your leads and engagement throughout the day.
To effectively plan out your day, at the very least, every successful outside sales rep needs:
- A map
- GPS access
- An appointment book
- A calendar or planner
But in today’s digital age, all of this can be mobile electronic versions. The even better news is, there are route optimization tools that can help you plan out each sales day faster and more effectively.
Some tools will even allow you to optimize your route and schedule meeting times and places throughout your day. It’s just a matter of finding one that works for you. Look for a tool that allows you to optimize your route so that you’re reducing the time spent behind your windshield and you’re able to get to each potential lead promptly. Allowing sufficient time to sell effectively with each lead and not be rushed, as well as keeping detailed communication notes to capitalize on personalized selling.
This will help you reach more quality leads in less time — with even less stress!
We all know that more leads mean more opportunities, which means more sales and more revenue for you and your company! By planning out your route ahead of time, you’ll be able to ensure that you have optimized your day to the fullest and you will no longer need to worry about missed opportunities.
3. Collaborate With Marketing For Geocentric Campaigns
When you expand your target audience, grow a stronger vertical marketing strategy, and combine this with an optimized route for lead generation and sales, you’ll find it’s helpful to have a boost from your marketing team.
By working collaboratively with Marketing, you’ll gain new insights into your target audience, area, and have a smaller pipeline because you already have the bad opportunities weeded out. This is your chance to implement an account-based marketing strategy that engages (and warms up) those leads before you ever speak with them. It’s taking a generalized marketing approach and drilling it down to customized marketing that your leads will find helpful and relevant. This is the theory of outbound marketing or account-based marketing.
“Outbound marketing is focused on reaching out to
customers through relevant and helpful content and
adding value at every stage in your customer’s buying journey.”
When you know who your ideal audience is, your marketing can be tailored to this audience in a way that is more likely to resonate with them. If you can utilize this type of account-based marketing, you’ll be able to familiarize potential leads before you even have the opportunity to speak with them in person or on the phone. Your target leads will be more open to you because they will feel like you already know them.
This means you will not only have more leads, but you’ll also have better leads! Again, going back to quality over quantity. If marketing can reach people with messaging that moves closer towards becoming a warm opportunity, then your personal touch can only increase their likelihood to sign.
How much easier would your job become when potential leads are already being familiarized with the message you’re about to share with them before you even speak to them? This is why you don’t want to overlook partnering more closely with the marketing team as you pursue leads in your area.
4. Ask Customers and Prospects For Referrals Of Nearby Businesses
Word of mouth continues to be one of the best ways to generate sales leads. This is key to reaching more potential leads than ever before who are already somewhat familiar with your product or service.
“Word of mouth is the primary factor behind 20 to 50 percent of all purchasing
We all hit bumps in the road and even the most carefully planned out route and targeted marketing strategy could still leave a need for more leads. If you find yourself in a rut or have more cancellations than normal, you might be on the road with nowhere to be for several hours. This is where customer referrals and/or lead referrals become so incredibly important.
If you are finishing up with a planned meeting, don’t be afraid to ask a few more questions. If you’re able to simply ask a customer or lead about the immediate area and if there are other potential leads that you could reach quickly, you just scored another sales lead.
There are also other options available if you’re in a tight spot and no one seems ready or willing to point you in the right direction. Today’s technology allows you to find new leads on the go. Find the right digital sales tool and you can discover new leads in your approximate area with just the touch of a button.
Source: [Map My Customers](mapmycustomers.me)
Just like we ask our dear friend Siri to find the nearest barbershop, you can use today’s tools to help you find potential leads right near you. From there, you must simply add them to your already planned route to fill in the cancellations or to make up for any lost opportunities you experienced earlier in the day.
5. Analyze Sales Data To Uncover New Opportunities
The truth is, planning and execution can only go so far without the use of sales data. Data is an often undervalued aspect of sales that can help to increase lead generation. Many people, especially sales managers, use sales data to understand the effectiveness of a product or solution and the effectiveness of the reps’ current sales pitch.
But, to be a great sales rep, you should understand that your sales CRM data can also be used to help you reach more people and easily generate more sales leads. Just as data helps you sell a product by convincing potential customers of the performance of the product, data can help you realize the potential for lead generation in your area.
You can utilize your CRM data to uncover new opportunities in your area. Whether this is by expanding opportunities for current customers through cross-sells or up-sells or simply uncovering new information that can help you generate new leads.
Additionally, you can find similar audiences to the information currently in your CRM and use that to generate leads. When you have a better understanding of who is currently in your CRM, you will have a greater understanding of how to sell to similar audiences or new verticals. Including pricing and other similar preferences.
Source: McKinsey & Company
This is where the power of data visualization comes in. 90% of the data transmitted to the human brain each day is visual. By turning your raw line-item sales data into visual representations through the use of data visualization tools will allow for a deeper understanding of sales data than ever before. By laying this data out in a map, you will be able to visually see the leads and opportunities in your region that are available to you.
This visual assistance from your data can open your eyes and help you achieve even more as you seek to widen awareness of your brand, solutions, and/or product in your region.
6. Automate Sales Engagement
With all of this talk about lead generation, you may have considered another dilemma.
Once you’ve generated all these leads, how will you be able to keep them all engaged? The key is to have a good rotation in which you keep up with your contacts through sales cadence management and engagement.
Source: The Sales Insider
You probably are already aware of this and that’s why you’re slightly nervous. But, once again, technology comes through for us. There are now tools available for outside sales that make effectively nurturing large numbers of leads and opportunities possible. You may not know it yet, but sales automation is your new best friend.
“Advances in sales force automation are reducing the amount
of time spent on grunt work, which frees sales professionals
to invest their energy where it counts: connecting with prospects.”
Whether you’re scheduling personalized email campaigns to multiple customers or sending automatic check-ins, you’ll love the data available to you and the sheer amount of time it saves you. You can now send personalized email campaigns to all your customers in one click through the use of automation tools. You’ll even be able to track who has opened the emails, in real-time, & create automated follow-up messages for those with unopened emails.
That’s only one feature. Geo-fencing with automatic check-ins, call-reminders, and more are all available with these types of tools. You can completely automate almost every aspect of your outside sales engagement. Leaving you with more time to do what matters most, meet with new leads who are ready to buy.
Sales Lead Generation Tools
So far we’ve briefly touched on utilizing sales lead generation tools to double down on your lead generation efforts and how to get more sales leads in less time. Let’s breakdown some specific examples of some of the great tools available.
Map My Customers
One option of sales lead generation tools you should definitely consider is our industry-leading territory mapping and sales automation platform Map My Customers. This platform helps you elevate your sales lead generation in several ways.
Map My Customers’ smart-routing feature allows you to plan out your sales route ahead of time, see the customers and leads that matter most, and capitalize on more opportunities more efficiently, all while reducing windshield time an average of 30%. You can also automate part of your sales cadence through automated custom emails, check-ins, and follow-ups.
You can also utilize data visualization to look at your current sales funnel in a rich graphic format and see where opportunities might be falling through the cracks. This allows you to shift focus where it is needed most.
Lead generation is also possible with Map My Customers with the ability to search for possible new leads in the immediate area by industry type and more so that you can quickly fill gaps or cancellations in your schedule.
One example of a sales automation and cadence tool is called Playbooks, from Insidesales.com. This tool can be used by both outside and inside sales reps. By allowing for more efficient sales cadence management, in combination with some sales automation, it will free up more of your time to focus on being able to generate more quality leads.
Playbooks allows you to prioritize contacts or accounts based on their likelihood to engage and buy, ensuring you put your focus on the best leads first. You have the flexibility to apply rules-based selection, AI-based selection, or a combination of both. This ensures you have total control over your lead engagement strategy.
You are provided a daily schedule of activities from all active contact strategies (called “Plays” in their system) to remind you who to follow up with and when. Hundreds of Plays can be run at a time, each with multiple steps across multiple channels while following best practices without ever getting lost. With Playbooks, you can edit or add an email event within your Plays and set it to send automatically.
It also tracks email opens and link clicks and notifies you in real-time to keep you constantly connected to your contacts.
Zoho Analytics is detailed sales data visualization at its finest. This software pairs seamlessly with your sales CRM (especially Zoho CRM) and brings your raw sales data numbers to life in interactive rich visuals. Making uncovering new sales lead opportunities easier than ever before.
Easy to digest insightful reports and dashboards can be created in no time by using the drag and drop interface. A variety of built- in components are available to utilize including charts, pivot tables, widgets, and tabular view components.
In Zoho Analytics, you can also share reports and dashboards with your colleagues and collaborate in real-time. You also can get more insight into your sales by combining data from several different sources to create cross-functional reports. Like bringing marketing data and sales data together to create visual charts that show which type of vertical marketing campaigns are converting the best.
These are just a few of the powerful sales tools available to assist in sales lead generation. By utilizing tools like these, you’ll be able to free up more of your time, so you can focus on only the most important contacts, at only the most important times.
Wrapping It All Up
Lead generation, when done properly, has never been more accessible to outside sales. Through careful segmentation, planning, marketing, data, and automation, you can reach more leads in less time than ever before! There’s no longer a need to stress when you have the right software and techniques to get the job done.
Have any additional techniques you’d like to share to boost sales leads? We’d love to hear them in the comments below!