You should decide to work a company for a reason. The reason/s should be well researched and make you think that your products or services could be timely and helpful for the lead.
The reason that you decide to work a lead should never be this...
Or that it was given to you by marketing as a gift wrapped up in a bow...
Instead of focusing on the idea of a lead, a good sales rep should be focused on the company as a whole and how that company could be a good fit for the product that the sales rep is selling.
Let's take an example of how you decide as a sales rep whether or not you should keep a lead and start to work it.
- You are an inside sales rep with a territory model at a SaaS company.
- You get inbound leads everyday from marketing.
- When you go into your CRM, you see your new leads in your view. You are ready to rock and start calling.
- You go through the leads and work every single lead.
- You just look at the lead record quickly and pick up the phone and GO.
Don't do that.
Every sales rep should do research on leads regardless of where the lead came from. If you pick up the phone without knowing who you are talking to, knowing anything about the company that you are calling, etc. you will end up wasting your time as well as potentially diminish the value that your company could have for this company in the future.
As a sales rep you should be focused on researching your leads before you start to prospect them. When you get an inbound lead or when you source a lead you should be asking yourself why that company could be a fit for your product or whatever you sell. If there are no reasons evident as to how you might be able to help then you don't really have a good reason to start working it.
You don't want to be the person who calls someone and says, "how can I help?" That is boring and not actually helpful. You are being generic and taking the easy way out. You are asking a generic question and hoping that will open up the conversation.
Buyers are educated, they have little time for you (an annoying sales rep) so do your work ahead of time. Don't reach out without a good reason. Set yourself up for success off the bat by understanding as much as you can about the company you are going to work so that when you do get them on the phone you are prepared and ready.
Before you decide to keep a lead and decide to work that lead, you should always know why.
Ask yourself these two questions to help you to figure out if you want to work a lead:
1. Why do I want to work this company and lead?
2. What do I think we can help with?
(If you want to be even better, ask yourself why reaching out could actually be timely and not just helpful).
In the process of answering these questions you will start to naturally do research on the company that is your lead. You will have to do research on the company, the contacts that you are going to work, the business model, news on the company, current company initiatives, etc. Once you have all that down you should make sure that you are logging that information in your notes in CRM so that next time you reach out you don't have to start over with your research. You should constantly be adding to your research over time in the record of the company in your CRM.
Once you have done the research and made a decision to work a lead/company, you don't give up. You are looking for a yes, or a no. You decided to work the lead for a reason, don't give up. Try things, be creative and reach out in many different ways.
Your leads in your CRM should always be high quality and if your manager came over to you and asked you why you were working a lead or account you should be able to tell him or her exactly why.
Would you be able to log into CRM right now and know that every lead/account in your name had a reason to be worked?