Some B2B companies assume that their internal marketing and sales teams are the best equipped to represent the company, set appointments and close deals. But a closer look at sales activity that builds the pipeline can help prevent inefficiencies that damage your sales pipeline.
Here are three common mistakes to avoid with B2B appointment setting:
Mistake #1: Setting Appointments For Unqualified Leads
If your lead generation team fails to pre-qualify leads before setting appointments, your sales team loses valuable time on unproductive calls – and your company loses revenue.
Many companies have relied on the acronym BANT (Budget, Authority, Need and Timeline) as a standard for lead generation and qualification. But this approach is no longer the best method for selling to today’s B2B buyers.
Instead of BANT, your leads should be qualified based on the ODAC methodology, which stands for Open, Discovery, Agreement and Close. Let’s break down those terms:
- Open: Your sales team uses an open, customer-centric approach from the first call to the last.
- Discovery: Learn about your prospect’s current pains and problems.
- Agreement: Get your prospect to envision your product working for them.
- Close: Guide your prospect through the logistics of their decision to buy.
Mistake #2: Failing To Maximize Appointment-Setting ROI
Increasing your sales team’s overall efficiency may result in increased revenue, but to achieve the best return on investment, you should start by capitalizing on their greatest strengths within your sales funnel. Your team’s strengths most likely include closing prospects who are on the phone and who have shown interest, but they may be less successful at identifying and qualifying leads.
To maximize your ROI with appointment setting, it’s important to have your marketing department warm up and qualify leads for your sales funnel. You could achieve additional benefits by outsourcing your lead generation and nurturing process to a qualified metrics-based firm.
An outsourced lead generation or appointment setting firm increases the efficiency of your sales team by allowing them to focus on closing deals, instead of finding them. This ultimately translates into a higher ROI for your sales budget.
Mistake #3: Trying To Handle Lead Generation On Your Own
When you rely on internal marketing teams to represent the company and generate leads, it’s difficult to scale their efforts to meet changing demand. Instead, consider hiring a lead generation team to enhance the marketing team’s efforts in parallel as they uncover new opportunities.
A team of reliable lead generation specialists serves as an extension of your business, with appointment-setting experts trained to represent the brand image you want to project. Outsourcing your lead generation efforts to an experienced team also ensures your leads are highly qualified and never dead-end opportunities.
Outsourced sales teams offer an additional way to extend your reach. If you’re relying on in-house sales reps to follow up on all leads, many promising opportunities could fall through the cracks during busy periods. For example, what if you need appointments in the field for your account executives who are at a conference you may be sponsoring? This event may be less of a focus for your inside sales team. Outsourcing sales to a reliable team increases your capacity to follow up with new contacts in a timely manner.
An expert sales team also brings fresh expertise to your sales process, which may lead to additional opportunities. With your outsourced team going after these new opportunities, your in-house reps are free to focus on closing deals with your current customer base.
Need to reinforce weak links in your B2B sales revenue chain? Download this free guide from Invenio Solutions® and discover how to strengthen your sales process for a steady stream of customers and revenue.