Sales qualification is a critical stage in outbound sales.
Just because a prospect has the financial capability or willingness to buy doesn’t mean that they’re a good fit for your company.
In this guide, we take a look at outbound sales tips that you can use to identify and qualify the right prospects in any marketing campaign.
Define Your Ideal Customer Profile First
A lot of great lead generation campaigns could have been better if only they had defined their ideal customer profile before they got on the phone to call up their leads.
Defining your different customer profiles allows you to:
- Prioritize which leads you should focus on
- Create different lead generation campaigns for different segments of leads
- And, be efficient with your marketing resources.
When you create an ideal customer profile, you shouldn’t just stop with sociodemographic profiles and industry. There are a lot more things you should be looking at such as pain points, preserved solutions, prospect history, prospect knowledge on your product, etc.
By drilling down your customer profile, you initially go at lead qualification when you are outbound should save you a lot of time dealing with prospects that don’t fit the bill.
Ask Them What Their Pain Points Are
This might be an obvious tip, but it works wonders.
You might guess where their pain point is at, but they might think otherwise.
During sales discovery calls, you need to ask them where they’re feeling the pain. This allows you to check if your product or service can really alleviate that particular pain point.
What we like about this line of questioning is that it shows real concern for the prospect as well. B2B sales is already competitive as it is and it helps if you’re relational.
There are also a lot of questions that you can ask about pain points. This drives the conversation further.
Ask Them What Solutions They Think They Need?
What you think they need and what they think they need are two different things.
This question allows you to put both you and your prospect on the same page, and manage each other’s expectations.
Managing expectations is critical during the lead qualification stage because you want a client that isn’t too heavy on your after sales and support teams.
If the prospects are too taxing on these teams, it means that they might eventually not be a good fit after all.
Focus on the BANT Framework
The BANT framework is one of the most popular methods for lead qualification because it covers the four most important aspects of determining if a prospect is a good fit to sell to.
B – Budget
Budget refers to the financial capability of a buying partner to purchase from the provider. In lead generation, this should already be covered by the initial research you’ve done about the prospect and the company.
However, the first round of research might not always be accurate and there are many instances where prospective buyers “claim” that they cannot afford a particular solution, when in reality they can.
A – Authority
The organization might be a good fit, but are you talking to the right person?
Although a specific DMU (decision-making unit) is usually in charge of the purchasing or making the decision to buy, you still can’t ignore the assistant units that bring forward the proposal to their bosses.
Make sure that you have the right material for the different people you’ll be talking to in an organization.
For example, you want to convince the technical unit about your product’s specs before you can provide a pitch to the CEO that relates the product to the company vision.
N – Need
A lot of successful salespeople can sell anything to anyone, but that doesn’t mean you should be selling to someone who doesn’t need it.
This causes problems for your organization’s support staff down the line and might leave you with a bad rep.
T – Timing
B2B sales cycles are especially notorious for their lead nurturing length, and that’s within reason, they make major financial decisions during specific seasons in their company and it’s usually big commitments.
You have time it right.
Make sure that you know where you are in the sales cycle before you deliver your winning pitch. You might be trying to pitch, when you should have been lead nurturing.
Take the Rejection but Create a Cold Lead List
You’re bound to get a couple of rejections in lead generation, and although we could write an entire article regarding this, here’s what you should keep in mind.
“Take it gracefully, but don’t burn your bridges.”
You want to be able to keep an open line of communication should you wish to contact this prospect in the future. This could be if they change their mind, have new requirements, or if you want to contact them regarding something else that is mutually beneficial.
Keeping a cold email list ensures that the leads that you have are not wasted.
Lead qualification is a difficult job, but it’s what ensures repeat sales and satisfied customers. By being able to weed out your leads earlier on, you become more efficient with the marketing resources you have, and you get a longer roster of happy clients. So, how’s your lead qualification lately? Have you been engaging in data cleansing and verification? If you haven’t you can start with Callbox today!