Category Archives: Lead Nurturing

These blogs discuss our lead nurturing services. These services include messaging and prospecting.

Managing lead generation for your renewal clients

Renewal clients are existing customers who have already bought products or services from you that have a renewal date or contract end point. As well as ensuring that the renewal is secured, managing your contact with these clients involves identifying opportunities to add additional services to your current customers. As Lewis Howes points out, “It’s almost always easier to sell to an existing customer base than to find a new one.”                       

Managing lead generation for your renewal clients involves a combination of tactics and strategies that are focused on retaining and expanding your existing client base.

Analysis: The first step is to identify which clients are most likely to renew their contracts, which ones have the potential to expand their business with you, and which ones are at risk of leaving. From there you can determine the best tactics for approaching each segment of your client portfolio.

Connection: To avoid clients falling into the “at risk of leaving” segment they need to feel valued and appreciated by your company. Staying in touch with your clients regularly through check-in calls, personalised emails, newsletters, and other channels will keep you in their mind and open to hearing extra sales messages from you.

Planning: Develop a plan that outlines the actions you will take to achieve your renewal goals. This plan should include communication strategies, and product offerings that suit each of your identified segments.

Refinement: Renewals are a continuous cycle, not just for a single year. Using data acquired from one sales cycle to guide decision-making for future campaigns.

By effectively managing lead generation for renewal clients, you can increase customer loyalty, retention, and revenue. Our new favourite business quote comes from sales expert (and sister of Robert for the music fans) Patricia Fripp. “It is not your customer’s job to remember you, it is your obligation and responsibility to make sure they don’t have the chance to forget you.” Growing your business with YBDT’s effective approach to outreach will give you a clear blueprint for success and ensure that your renewal clients don’t get the chance to forget you.

We are more than a lead generation company and focus on supporting the creation of an effective strategy for finding and then developing leads with your existing clients and new prospects. Using our highly experienced team to nurture your clients through regular contact will leave you in the ideal position to capitalise on the opportunity to renew and extend your relationship with them when the time is right.

After years of building sustainable effective marketing for our clients we have a toolbox of techniques and insights into market sectors and prospect behaviour that make YBDT the ideal choice to support your lead generation. Get in touch to book a discovery call that is the first step to your business growth.

Playing The Long Game

Successful lead generation and nurturing takes time. We looked in a recent blog at the planning which is needed to build a sustainable strategy for growth. That growth is not something that can be achieved overnight, so it’s important to set realistic expectations and be patient. There are many different tactics you can use to generate leads, the most important part of any strategy is discovering the most suitable ones for your business, and the markets you operate in.

A lead generation strategy will identify potential customers who are interested in your products or services and reaching out to them to start a process of understanding and engagement. By building relationships with them, providing information, answering their questions, and addressing their concerns you will be in an ideal position to act when they are ready to buy. Nurturing leads takes time because you need to establish trust and credibility with potential clients before they are willing to make a purchase. It’s important to provide them with relevant information and solutions that address their specific needs and pain points. This process can take weeks, months, or even longer depending on the complexity of your product or service.

My favourite lead nurturing statistic is Wanda Allan’s ‘80% of sales are made between the 5th and 12th contact yet, 90% of sales people make 3 contacts or less’. This stat says more about the reality of time poor salespeople than about their willingness or ability to follow up leads.

This is where YBDT’s sales enablement service comes into its own. Using our extensive experience of lead generation and sales we have put together a three-step process aimed at improving your sales success.

  1. Gap analysis – Our unique gap analysis system identifies bottle necks and other blocks in your sales process.
  2. Tailored sales process – We help you create a winning sales process that is based on your operation and becomes the blueprint to your sales success
  3. Bespoke sales training – With these steps in place we can deliver training and mentoring individually designed to support your team as they adopt the new process.

With time always at a premium for your sales team, lead nurturing service may be the solution to making sure the follow ups are maintained consistently for as long as required, rather than risking the effort of acquiring the lead being lost as priorities within the business shift. The beauty of what we offer is that we can help you with both, providing a full sales support service, from lead generation through nurturing to improving your internal sales mechanism.

Successful lead generation and nurturing requires a long-term commitment to building relationships with potential customers. It takes time to establish trust and credibility, but the rewards are worth it in the form of loyal customers who are more likely to make repeat purchases and refer others to your business. YBDT has built a successful business over the last 8 years by applying the principles of sustainable relationship building to ourselves. And we can help you achieve the same long-term success. Get in touch to book a discovery call that is the first step to your business growth in 2023.

Don’t believe the hype. There is no fairy dust

Like most people I’ve been getting a lot of emails promising to work miracles in all areas of business. One recent one told me how the sender had “helped John go from £100k/mo to £200k/mo in 3 months and Joe close $485k in new deals while working part time”. The truth, of course, is that the sort of magic needed to live up to promises like that does not build viable businesses. If you had found the secret formula to instant sales success, would you give it away? In the real world where our businesses live, we want to create sustainable growth that gives value to our customers now, in a year and in five years. To do that takes time, planning and developing a long-term strategy to prove your worth to your clients.

In 2023 sustainable growth means taking a clear view of how to achieve your aspirations for the business. It is easy to get attracted to each new opportunity and devote all your resources to chasing it down. Much like a football team where everyone is running after the ball, you risk of leaving your own goal, or existing business, undefended. Any game, or business plan needs to be built on a sound strategy with the tactics used to achieve your aims changing depending on the opposing team you want to beat, or the business prospects you are looking to convert into clients.

In a leading article at the CEO-Worldwide portal Colin Thompson suggests that: “The route to growth is more important than the growth target itself”. He goes on to point out that skincare company Natura, owners of Avon and Body Shop, has achieved success by concentrating on a relationship-focused business model. While having a target to aim for is clearly still important, putting the steps in place that make hitting targets repeatable is critical.

YBDT has 15 years of experience in doing exactly that. We create finely tuned sales and marketing strategies for business looking to build success for now and the future. Creating a successful sales and marketing plan calls for a comprehensive understanding of your business, it’s products, unique selling points, and story to help us craft the strategy. We can help you pit that strategy into practice by creating a tailored sales process and using our team of experts to produce the content and make the calls that will convert leads into customers.

We have worked with Higos Insurance Services since early 2020, here is what their Regional Manager Alan Clarke said about his experience of working with us, ‘I would say YBDT are ideal for businesses who are looking for a strong partner, who will represent them well, and deliver positive results in terms of strengthening your telemarketing distribution channel and sales pipeline.’

We know there is no fairy dust, but after 15 years of following our own advice and building sustainable effective marketing for our own business, we also know what is needed to do the same for your business. Get in touch to book a discovery call that is the first step to your business growth in 2023.

Should you prioritise existing clients over new business?

There are many statistics and quotes around how much harder it is to generate new business than it is to retain existing clients and build additional work with them. Bill Quiseng encourages us to “work as hard to keep a customer as you do to find a new one.” Starting from scratch will always be harder than continuing to work with someone who knows and trusts your business. You need to find that balance between the existing business that keeps the wheels turning and allows you the time to create the new business that grows the company. How that balance is achieved depends on what you do. In sectors like insurance or SAAS renewals are critical to building a sustainable business.

Locking in clients for another year is a task that cannot be left to chance. Discovering where your competitors are not fulfilling their customers’ needs is vital to building your business. Creating a strategy that will take account of both the requirements of existing and new business is the key to making sure nothing slips through the net.

The common factor is that both existing renewals and new business are based on relationships. Existing clients need to be nurtured every bit as much as potential new customers. A clear business development strategy will give you the information to make decisions about where your existing team is most effective, and what other resources are needed to allow your goals to be met. YBDT’s sales enablement service starts by creating exactly this strategy.

If you are looking to build a renewals pipeline then understanding your competition, and differentiating yourself from them is important in busy crowded marketplaces like insurance and IT. Whether you are talking to new or existing customers your sales conversations should cover three elements: creating interest, nurturing it appropriately and conversion. Taking clients for granted because they have been with you for years, is to undervalue them. Nurturing them when renewals are due demonstrates their worth to you. YBDT have put the nurturing of potential customers at the heart of our work for clients for a long time. It works just as well when speaking to your existing clients about their renewals, by reinforcing relationships and flagging areas of concern.

YBDT have worked with Higos Insurance since 2020 through our sales enablement programme. We have helped them identify renewals in new target sectors, allowing their team to concentrate on supporting existing clients and retaining their business. Higos regional manager Alan Clarke said: “I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending YBDT to any organisation that want to create a sales campaign or indeed want to enhance their current sales structure.”

YBDT can help you create and implement a clear business development strategy to differentiate you from the competition, maximise your client retention and build a pipeline that balances renewals and new business acquisition. Get in touch to learn more about how we can help.

How to prioritise your follow up calls?

According to Wanda Allan, author of Follow Up Sales Strategies, 80% of sales are made between the 5th and 12th contact, yet 90% of sales people make three contacts or less.

I am sure you that you have heard this or similar quotes as there are many of these formulas around. Whether it’s making 5 calls, 8 calls or however many it takes to get an answer from a prospect, the point of follow up is that it is consistent and continues. To achieve this, you need to set up a follow up process which is part of an overall agreed sales process for your company. If you are not sure what I mean, check our demo sales process document here.

One of the key issues with following up beyond setting up an agreed process, is having time to do it. We are all very busy and that means that often, important but not essential activities like following up can fall by the wayside. Once this happens it becomes harder to keep on top of the follow up and utilise opportunities to build a relationship. Rather than taking an all or nothing approach, in this case, we would recommend prioritising your follow up list and setting shorter sessions which you can stick to.

So how do you go about prioritising your list? Well, here are three tips:

  1. Prioritise by intent: if the prospect is communicating with you and providing updates, they are ones to prioritise and keep speaking to. If you hear nothing back or communication is patchy than put those into a lower priority list.
  2. Stick to timelines agreed:  developing trust is a big advantage of regular follow up and keeping to agreed timing is key to it so make sure you set activity reminders. One useful time saving tip is to tie these timelines to your regular follow up sessions which become a part of your default diary.
  3. Consider their personality type: identifying your prospects’ preferences is very helpful in the process of building a relationship and prioritising opportunities. Use tools like DISC to consider their personality type to help you prioritise and remove opportunities from your pipeline. For example, if they are introvert and detailed, they may need longer to consider whereas if they are executive and direct, they may have moved on by now. 

What about those prospects on your pipeline who you are not able to speak to, should you give up? Personally, I would try a few more steps before you give up, things like:

  • Try different platforms for follow up, if you are struggling to get hold of a prospect, try different platforms like emails, LinkedIn messages or reaching out through a mutual contact.
  • Try speaking to other team members, are there any other team members you can reach out to in the company? Often you can get much more information form more junior team members that will help you move the opportunity on.
  • Send some helpful information, share some helpful articles you have come across to re-start the conversation or make some useful introductions if applicable.
  • Leave it for a bit, rather than bombard them with messages try and leave them be for a bit an get back in touch at a later date.

If you are still struggling to keep up with follow up, remind yourself that selling is a process of building and developing relationships that can take some time to firm up and yield results. Following up is an excellent opportunity to do just that, even if it feels very slow and frustrating at times. New leads coming into your business are often very initial and require a structured approach to close a sale. This varies based on your product and industry, but the higher the sales value, the longer and more interact the process is.

Our Team at YBDT can help you with firming and setting up your unique sales process. If you and your team are still not managing to cover this off, we can use our business development team to give you a helping hand. Get in touch to find out more and read about how we can support your follow up system here

Giving your team the support to succeed

One of the big changes in the sales landscape over the last ten years has been the move towards closer integration between sales and marketing teams. Sales integration allows marketing and sales teams to work together generating awareness of your products and services to a target audience, and then converting those leads into orders. In the past marketing was carried out to generate leads, with a sales team then picking up the leads to progress them to close. In the more integrated world of today both sales and marketing may be involved at all stages to ensure that no opportunity is missed.

Your sales pipeline is a representation of where all of your prospects are in the sales process, is essential. It helps you plan your likely revenue and gauge the state of your business. But it is reliant on the information you feed into it. W. Edwards Deming said, “you can’t manage what you don’t measure”, and this is never truer than when looking at your sales pipeline.

By integrating the lead generation and follow up with the negotiation and closing of the sale you have the opportunity to review your progress, understand the client’s requirements and maximise every opportunity, now or in the future. The days of isolated external salespeople pounding the streets and knocking on doors are gone. The companies making a success of sales are the ones who have an integrated support network to feed their front-line sales team with high quality leads ready to buy. Attracting the best sales professionals in a market where they have their pick of jobs means that you need the team in place to generate and nurture those leads.

Your Business Development Team provide an end-to-end strategic service that supports your existing sales team and puts your business in the front rank of companies the best wants to work for. We take you through the steps to creating and managing a sales pipeline that will fuel your sustainable growth.

  • Business Development Strategy – An integrated sales and marketing strategy is needed to bring focus to your activities. We build a clear understanding of your business to ensure that we can help you deliver your business aspirations
  • Lead Generation – In line with the strategy we find the best lead generation channels for your business. Digital and offline channels are used to ensure the best coverage of your ideal markets.
  • Lead Nurturing – This is the critical activity. Taking the time to nurture your prospects to the point that they are ready to buy can take your existing salespeople away from supporting and retaining existing business. YBDT’s lead nurturing service is the answer.
  • Sales Enablement – We support the creation of a tailored sales process for your business. Bringing a clear, concise, shared process together with all sales and marketing collateral into a single point will help embed the process in the company, and support ongoing staff training.

 To succeed in sales, you need to recruit the best people for your market. Being able to offer them a clear path to sales success is what YBDT can do for you, keeping your best sellers focused on the critical path to orders. If you want results-driven services that are tailored to your specific business targets and goals, we can help. Get in touch to learn more about what we can do for your business.

Bruce Springsteen knows all about sustainable sales results, do you?

We often lead our blogs with a quote from a writer or speaker on sales techniques, but inspiration for how you approach sales improvement can come from many sources. In this case Bruce Springsteen “Getting an audience is hard. Sustaining an audience is hard. It demands a consistency of thought, of purpose and of action over a long period of time.”  

As someone who has built a successful career on consistency and developing relationships with his audience, The Boss is a good role model when it comes to looking at the process which goes on in the mind of the customer when they are moving towards a decision to buy from you. All successful selling follows a process of building and developing relationships. These can take some time to solidify and yield results. To be effective the process of taking the initial interest and nurturing it needs to be very specific and based on a clear understanding of the prospect’s requirements and expectations.

The best way of achieving that understanding is to have a carefully crafted sales process that follows your customer’s journey from the initial interest through to cementing the relationship. Your Business Development Team works with our clients to create a tailored sales process which is the essential first step towards converting more prospects. Identifying and refining your target markets and the key points that will encourage them to buy from you leads into the sales process that guides them to an understanding of your business and how it will work for them. With the sales process in place YBDT can help you communicate it to your sales teams and support its roll out into your business.

Identifying and nurturing the prospects who will contribute to your sales growth is as we have said before, time consuming. We have pointed out in earlier blogs that it can take anything from five to eight contacts to bring a company to the point where they are ready to buy, and it’s a point we can’t make often enough as so many businesses give up early in the process. Using our specialist business development team to call the prospects in your sales pipeline to feed consistent high-quality leads into your account managers and salespeople frees their time up to concentrate on closing sales and supporting existing client retention.

Bruce Springsteen’s first two albums were commercial failures. But he had the building blocks in place to understand what his audience wanted from him, and the tools to deliver it, and used them to create the successful work that followed. YBDT can offer you the tools to build a consistent process which will lead to your sales success. Get in touch to learn more about how we can help you generate, nurture, and convert your prospects.

Developing the hidden opportunities in your customer base

Whatever way you look at it, generating additional sales requires additional time and resources to maximise the opportunities available to you. As with most other things in business, working smarter rather than harder is the key to achieving the best return on investment.

You doubtless already have strong working relationships with long standing clients, but how well do they understand you and the full range of services your offer? Research conducted in 2021 for a leading B2B business portal found that 65% of the companies surveyed sold just one product or service to their top ten customers. There are two points to take away from this:

  1.  There is an audience who is already convinced of the key benefits to them of dealing with your company.
  2. Sales of one product or service is more vulnerable to your competitors than a wider range of sales would be.

A client who benefited from YBDT’s help in selling more products to existing clients is Harrier Pneumatics. Their core business was built around supplying new and replacement compressors to industrial customers. Working with our Sales Enablement Consultancy service helped them to identify the best routes to adding to the suite of products and services that their existing clients would benefit from. As in this example, an important part of YBDT’s sales consultancy is analysing your existing client base and their activity. This improves your understanding of the best opportunities to add sales, and to strengthen customer relationships. This goes well with another measure from the said report which states that 70% of the businesses surveyed said that they welcomed proactive approaches from trusted suppliers that saved money or improved their own customer service.

When working for Harrier Pneumatics we discovered that many of their customers were replacing components when regular maintenance would prevent failures, preventing costly production downtime and emergency call outs. Planned maintenance helped Harrier by keeping them in more regular contact with clients and putting them on the spot to discuss upgrades and system expansions. It moved them from being just suppliers of a single part to being a dependable partner in the upkeep of compressed air systems.

YBDT’s sales consultancy service is ideal for companies who need to understand how, why, and when their customers buy. It may be that purchases are made cyclically meaning that you need to be ahead of the competition in discussing renewals of maintenance contracts. Products bought irregularly mean that you need to be in front of the decision maker often enough to seize the opportunity when it arises. Likewise, if you depend on distributors to feed your business string relationships and knowledge of exactly what you do is critical to enable them to sell your products and services effectively.

A final relevant statistic: “It is six to seven times more expensive to attract a new customer than it is to retain an existing one.” I mentioned earlier the risk associated with supplying a single product into a major client. YBDT’s sales consultancy service can help you make the transition from supplier to partner, safeguarding existing work, and building firm foundations for the future. Get in touch with me to learn more about how YBDT can help.

Consistent messages inspire customer confidence

In one of our newsletters recently we used the quote “Consistency breeds familiarity, familiarity breeds confidence, and confidence breeds sales” from Jay Conrad Levinson. He was the author of the 1984 book ‘Guerrilla Marketing’. While many of the marketing strategies that he suggested proved short-lived, his key point about consistency being the best way to secure long term customers is more valid than ever.

There has been lots of research into how businesses buy. The main takeaway from it is that it needs an average of seven contacts before a client is ready to make a buying decision. When they surveyed clients from a range of business sizes and types the CRM provider HubSpot discovered that 44% of sales people gave up after a single follow up. Pressure of sales targets, and servicing existing clients was blamed for this. But whatever the reason there is a mismatch between what the average internal sales team can achieve and the potential customer’s mindset.

Connecting with the client is the most important thing you can do to build a relationship. Emails only take the process so far. Picking up the phone and letting them hear your company’s name and the fact that you are there to support them when the time is right to talk is the single most effective way of following up a sales conversation.

In a restaurant the waiter will often follow up delivering food to your table, asking if everything is OK. Often, we just smile and say, “yes thanks”, but occasionally we do need something else or have a problem that is stopping our enjoyment of the meal. The same applies in a sales conversation. You provide the answer to a question and then follow up appropriately to confirm that all was well with the resolution to the query. The biggest concern of a salesperson can often be that they are being annoying or intrusive with follow ups. The reason for employing a professional lead nurturing service is to make the difference between being supportive and the waiter who constantly asks if everything is fine.

New business is vital to your business growth. Generating and nurturing leads that build a pipeline of sales potential for the future can be something that does not fit easily into the working pattern of your existing team who are focusing their energy on servicing and retaining existing customers.

YBDT can help you create and implement a clear business development strategy to generate and nurture leads up to the point that your sales team can take them on to orders. We can’t put it any better than one of our long-term clients. David Champ of TC Consult. “Using YBDT gives you an opportunity to focus on your sales process. Ultimately, it’s a much quicker more efficient process than trying to organically grow a sales team. If you are familiar with your core business but not with sales, why would you try and create a spec for a business development manager when you could use experts to help you and see results a lot quicker?”

Get in touch to learn more about how we can help.

Keeping going is often the key

In our recent blogs we have been talking about creating a growth mindset and planning for your business growth. Building your plans will nurture the growth mindset, and that in turn will help develop the other tool needed for success in the marketplace, resilience.

Every business owner will have challenges thrown at them, from the small and easy to overcome to the significant. Those who are growth-minded see these challenges as an opportunity to learn and strengthen their skill set. The resilient sales person and their leaders will have understood that life, and business, will not always go as they would wish. They will also have the ability to stay the course and work through adversity, as most businesses have had to over the last two years, and emerge stronger. While we hope and expect that business conditions will continue to improve in the coming year, having the tools to take some of the uncertainty away will mean you control your business destiny better than those who have the fixed mindset that looks for reasons why they are not succeeding.

Planning for growth, looking for opportunities and adopting the growth mindset all build resilience into your team, your business, and yourself. Creating a positive culture in your business will shape the mindsets of your team and help them face the challenges that all businesses face, and overcome them. Carol Dweck says that fostering a growth mindset “takes dedication and hard work” but focusing on simple things like the language you use when talking about your business and praising effort and innovation will go a long way to fostering the positive approach that will see your company succeed.

One major challenge for any business is time:

  • Time to make all the calls you need to
  • Time to research a project or customer
  • Time to perfect your offer and understand what your potential customer needs from you

Taking a growth-minded approach allows you to realise that you can’t do everything by yourself.

At Your Business Development Team, we believe that selling is a process of building and developing relationships. These can take time to yield results and our lead generation and nurturing services work by taking away the need for you and your team to do everything yourselves, providing you with extra time to build sustainable sales for 2022 and beyond.

For example, letting go of the follow up process too soon often means missing out on sales. A specific targeted plan to draw potential clients towards you will help you convert more sales. We take your initial leads and follow them through to the point that your sales team can pick them up and make the final close. Get in touch with us to start planning your route to business growth in 2022.