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"Closing Sales Leads."

October 16, 2009 by Mike Strawbridge

Closing Sales Leads

 While the ideal way to close a sales lead is to make a sale, that won’t always be what happens.  And even when you make a sale the lead is never really closed as you will be making follow up sales to these people.

 So what do you do with sales leads that just seem stuck?  These leads are the ones that may not be quite dead i.e. they have not told you to go away and never call again.  But these leads don’t really seem to be going anywhere.

 In a previous article, I wrote about a system of managing sales leads using 3x5 cards.  This article will assume you are using that method; however you can apply this technique to any sales lead management system.

 After each contact with a sales lead, you should rate the contact.  For simplicity, use a scale of one to ten where one is they have implied you should never call again and ten being the have their credit card in hand.

 Let’s say for example that after a contact you rate them at a four.  Ask them to then rate themselves on a scale of one to ten of how interested they are in you offer.  Now use their number. Assume for this example they say they are at a level 4 in interest.  Ask them what it would take to raise their interest to a level of 5.  Don’t shoot for ten, just one notch up.

 Listen very closely to their answer.  They will usually tell you exactly what you need to know.  They may need more time.  They may need more information. They may need to consult with someone else.  They may need more testimonials or a better guarantee.  Whatever it is, make a note of it on your card and have this information ready the next time you contact them.

 Now rate the contact again and mark your rating on the card.  If this lead still seems low, then shuffle it to the back of the deck and focus on more promising leads.  Or if you now feel that you can advance once you have provided the lead with the information they need, then shuffle them to the top.

 This method of closing a lead will help you maintain your energy and focus.  It will also help to avoid awkward moments when you meet sales leads in a social setting.  You don’t have to wonder what they think of you, you can focus on the moment knowing where you stand with them.

 No longer will you have to avoid a lead because you don’t know where you stand with that client.  You can focus you energy in a positive direction and work on leads where you know you can meet their needs or you will know how to ask for the information they need.

Mike Strawbridge October 16, 2009

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