Every sales representative knows the general definition of a sales opportunity: a prospect who is likely to become a client. However, it’s the question of exactly where the line falls between “likely” and “unlikely” that produces uncertainty even among experienced sales reps.
This is problematic because, if a company has not pinned down what it specifically deems a sales opportunity, this could wreak that company’s chances of forecasting sales truly reliably.
What is considered a lead in sales?
It would be useful to decide on the answer to this question, as you would need to start gathering leads before you have any likelihood of starting to mine opportunities as well.
When you attempt to attract interest from other companies as part of a B2B campaign, you might publish a white paper or e-book which you invite interested businesses to download. If a firm acts on this invitation, you can constitute this a “marketing-generated lead”.
A “sales-generated lead”, meanwhile, would be possible if you had already proactively got in touch with a particular potential client to promote your company’s offerings. If this prospect calls back to indicate their interest in learning more about these offerings, you would have a lead.
Managing a lead conversion to opportunity
To become a lead, a company must have a particular problem which it is endeavouring to solve. However, you might not have identified what this problem is or whether the prospect even has one. They might have downloaded your e-book, for example, just to read the content.
However, you need to unearth the lead’s pain point by putting carefully worded questions to this company. It would also be necessary to settle on how urgently the prospect wants to solve the problem. If that issue has lingered for decades, the firm might be content with living with it for now.
Once you have narrowed down the nature of the problem, assess whether your product or service is well-suited to solving it. You might be offering a product intended for firms of more than a hundred employees – in which case, you shouldn’t try to sell that product to a three-person start-up.
Even if the company expresses interest in buying the product, resist selling it to them. Otherwise, the client could soon realise that they have been lumbered with a remedy intended for a problem that, in this case, doesn’t exist. This situation wouldn’t reflect well on your own business.
Now that you know how to turn a lead into sales…
… you can strengthen your focus on pursuing opportunities while tasking our marketing agency, Prospect Research, with generating more of the leads for your company to chase. We will only present you with leads that you are likely to convert.