Leads refer to people who have the potential to add to the sales or become part of the entrepreneurs’ network of salespeople. For many home businesses, the constant flow of leads greatly increases success, especially if the nature of marketing is multi-level. Without generating leads, the entrepreneur will not increase his commissions and sales.
Thus, it is important for a home business entrepreneur to find leads. Some of them get stumped on where to find leads. When they keep hitting a blank wall, their sales go down. And some simply give up the home business, throwing away the invested capital and time.
There is no 100% absolute positive method of getting good leads. But there are ways of generating leads that have been known to provide additional sales and recruits to the home business entrepreneur. Here are three of the most popular methods of finding leads.
Buying leads from the industry
The chosen industry of the home business may be in the area of health and wellness, personal care and grooming, or E-commerce. Whichever industry it will be, there are companies that have lists of leads for it. These companies specialize in procuring lists of leads that are sold to entrepreneurs involved in multi-level marketing.
The cost of one lead may range between one to five dollars. Newly acquired leads are more expensive than old leads. Leads that have more information are worth more than leads with scarce information.
The usual data that accompany a lead are the following:
-> Full name or legal name
-> Address (usually the current address)
-> Contact number (usually the conventional telephone number)
-> Email address
Some companies include their estimate on how much the client is interested in a particular industry. The entrepreneur must be certain that the leads come from a reputable company.
Getting leads from the Internet
Leads may come from the Internet. There are ads on the Internet that offer certain free items, called freebies if a person will just fill up a form. The information from these forms is collected and then sold to companies who wanted to find people interested in their industries.
The downside to this is that the persons filling up the form may be children using the name of their parents. Thus, the preferred industries clicked do not reflect good choices. This is why leads obtained from the Internet are less credible.
The home business entrepreneur must be certain that the leads are new and, if possible, he is the only one who has access to these leads. But most of the time, other home businesses also tap into this certain information. Thus, being prompt in contacting the leads is vital.
Every city has its own business networking organizations. The bigger is the city, the more network groups. These groups contact available via the city or state economic development departments, the Chamber of Commerce, and several private economic organizations.
The entrepreneur must also look into newspapers for announcements of meetings of different organizations, clubs, and interest groups. Then, he should actively participate in network groups whose interests are closely related to his home business industry.
A home business entrepreneur may use any of the above methods in finding leads. Then he must follow up his prospects several times. If there are questions, clarifications, and even objections given by a prospect, the entrepreneur must be ready with answers. All these may be just what he needs to increase his sales and recruitment.
Increasing Sales Using the Different Methods of Gathering Business Leads
Business leads are one of the most important parts of a marketing plan. It allows companies and individuals to find investors, donors, response buyers, and even a new business to expand company production. However, looking for business leads is not as easy as it may seem because you have to go through thousands of consumers and contacts before you can find the right leads.
Fortunately, there are different methods of gathering business leads today. Such methods include:
Collecting Telemarketing Lists –
One way of gathering consumer leads and business leads is through telemarketing lists. These lists contain demographic-specific telephone numbers of consumers and businessmen with interest in buying your product and services or doing business with you
Creating E-mail Lists –
Through the Internet, you can easily promote your products and services as well as contact investors directly on their personal e-mails. However, simply collecting random e-mails is not effective in increasing sales. Instead, gathering e-mail lists of your target consumer leads or business leads should be your goal. This way, you can reduce the need to sort those with interest and others without interest in your business.
Conducting Surveys –
Surveys are great marketing tools. This enables you to know what your target audience needs and wants. As such, you achieve feasible business leads that will surely sell, instead of leaving your products to chance. This way, not only can you create sellable products that your consumers will buy, you also build solid email lists of your “preferred” clients.
Gathering Targeted Contact Information –
If you want reliable business leads and consumer leads, you should also gather contact information from new homeowners, new movers, and new businesses. Thus, you can keep track of your customer base and investors even if they changed residence or company addresses.
Improving sales is doable if you only know where to start. Looking for business leads by conducting surveys, creating email lists, collecting telemarketing lists, and gathering targeted contact information are four effective ways to gather contact information of consumers and businesses, even of new homeowners and new businesses. If you know that your sales are dropping, switch to another marketing plan that includes these methods of building business leads and you would be shocked how your sales dramatically increased.
Convert leads into clients and boost your sales
A major part of keeping profitable and growing your business is maintaining a focus on business development. Even when you’ve got the right mix of work, clients and employees you should be looking for new sales leads. Establish a process that ensures your existing customers don’t get neglected while you manage new business opportunities in a cost- and time-effective manner.
1. Generate sales leads.
Identify the types of companies you want to work with and a realistic number of companies you want to target over a given period of time. For example, An accountant with experience in the marketing industry might decide to target five opportunities per month focussed on marketing consultancies.
Finding potential clients and identifying new opportunities can be done through networking events, tenders listed in newspapers and industry magazines, and headlines in newspapers about new projects and industry seminars. Keep an eye on your industry and stay aware of new developments.
Track the companies you approach in a database (you could use Microsoft Office Excel or Access). Tracking should cover the obvious things company contact details as well as details of what was discussed, potential work, actions, and more.
2. Qualify the leads.
Once you have companies identified, review it to ensure they are realistic opportunities. Some areas to think about include:
- Do you have the right contacts to get started?
- Do you have the right services to offer them?
- How can their website help you understand them better?
- Do you have any conflicts of interest in pursuing this company?
- Does this client have growth potential or would it be a quick job?
- Who makes the decisions? How can you reach them?
3. Raise your business profile.
By raising your company profile (no matter how small you are) you’ll be able to generate new business with less effort. As a leader in the industry, a new business will come to you. There are many ways to raise your profile; you could try sponsoring events, adverts and gaining media coverage. The size, location, and target market of your business will dictate the medium to use and the areas to cover.
4. Show them what you’re made of
Start to reach your qualified opportunities by showcasing your company’s products. Send them a brochure or a copy of any newsletters you produce and invite them to join; show off examples of your work; highlight relevant media articles. However, if you’re using e-mail, avoid being overly intrusive or they may regard it as spam.
Develop standard template letters in Word to send to potential clients to accompany your credentials/brochures. Link to your database (Excel, Access, or Outlook) when merging the letters and envelopes to ensure you don’t have to re-enter details.
There is no specified time for this courting, be patient. It could be six months before anything comes to fruition.
5. Set a meeting time.
So you’re in the door. Now you need to sell yourself. Tailor the meeting to suit the way you operate as a business. It could be a formal PowerPoint presentation or a discussion over coffee. You may have no choice for the style of the meeting but make sure you are comfortable and well prepared. During the meeting be sure to demonstrate the knowledge you have developed in the previous stages.
6. Follow up.
You’ve presented your capabilities and ideas. Don’t stop there. Follow-up is essential. This is a major part of the process and should be taken as seriously as the other steps. You’ll probably be able to build on ideas from the meeting, or you might find an interesting/relevant article or statistics you could send to re-open the discussion. Even if you don’t have anything to send, thank them for the opportunity.