In the classic TV show Colombo, Peter Falk made this quote famous, “Let me ask just one more question?” You see, Colombo was one of the most persistent characters portrayed on television. Once he latched on to a murder suspect he would question them endlessly, walk away and then add, “Let me ask just one more question.” He would walk away again, then say, “Oh I just thought of something.” The million-dollar question is, do your IT marketing reps follow up on their qualified sales leads relentlessly like Colombo?
What are Three Reason Your IT Marketing Team Should be Following Up?
A Cold Lead Can Heat Up
Traditionally, your IT marketing team may meet with a prospect that comes through the sales pipeline and leaves the meeting feeling there’s no real interest. Typically, short-term sales people will mark the lead as cold and file it away because they’re only in the sales game for instant gratification. However, the reality is that when a novice classifies a lead as cold, it might simply be a prospect that wants to do their due diligence research. This means they will really think about the services offered for some time until their interest builds.
Failure to follow up on this type of lead only means that you have educated the prospect so that some other, savvier IT marketing team will follow up and make an easy sale.
Conditions on the Ground May Change
At other times, your IT marketing team may encounter an interested business executive that’s willing to listen to a sales presentation but is adamant that they’re happy with their current IT provider. The average sales person will have a knee-jerk reaction and just toss this opportunity right in the trash. However, this is another oversight since they have assumed the end user’s current IT provider will never make a mistake. The truth is that sometimes an IT guy can screw up royally just after their client has received a proposal from an MSP competitor. Once again, a failure to follow up on these types of leads only means you’re handing deals to the competition.
Buying Process Gets Stalled
It is not uncommon for a seriously interested IT buyer to encounter some obstacles getting a managed services agreement through their buying process. In some companies, the buying process is long and laborious because a board of directors must meet and decide all procurement agreements. Of course, if the buying process gets stalled, it can delay the decision even longer. This is another reason why a lack of response from a prospect doesn’t always mean no!
The truth is that when your IT marketing teams get a prospect in their hot little hands, they need to follow up no matter how they ‘feel’ about the leads. As we have seen, a cold lead can heat up, conditions on the ground may change and the buying process can take longer than you think or get stalled. That’s why MSP business owners should inculcate the persistence of Colombo in their sales team so they will always have just one more question or just one more thing to discuss. It’s just a little thing, after all!