You’ve made contact, had some good conversations, and then, somehow, nothing happens. Welcome to the “No-Decision Zone” – that weird sales limbo where promising prospects evaporate. Don’t feel too bad though. You’ve got a lot of company; by some estimates, up to 58 percent of deals are lost to “no decision.”
So how can you avoid this problem? There is no quick fix, but when your sales and marketing teams are more closely integrated and follow a process, you’re more likely to be successful.
Talk to the right people
Many businesses have different levels of influencers – from supervisors to CEOs – and together, these people comprise a “buying center.” Sales reps have to understand the roles these individuals play along with their buying history. Otherwise, you may end up talking to the wrong people and focusing on the wrong selling points.
Your marketing team can help you gather intelligence on buying centers and what relationships would be most beneficial to closing a deal. Any information gathered about prospects should be easy to access – ideally, in a shared platform where marketing and sales can quickly see a prospect’s history. Download history, social interactions or any inbound information on the lead would provide more context for sales to close the deal.
Understand the power of the status quo
In U.S. Senate elections, the incumbent wins almost 80 percent of the time. The reasons for that success rate are complicated, but two facts are true: Senators who have won a seat in the past are seen as more qualified for re-election, and often, there are no worthy challengers.
Now, think of how that applies to sales when your prospect is your competitor’s client. You’ve got to present a pretty convincing case to persuade prospects to choose you over a business they know and trust. You’ll need to build a relationship with a prospect and try to sleuth-out any competitor shortcomings that you can solve.
Here, timing is important, and that’s when having a process that establishes a schedule for following up can be helpful. You don’t want to push too hard or too soon and end up in the No-Decision Zone. You also don’t want to let that lead fall off your radar. Having a standardized cadence through workflow automation will provide you with an optimized schedule for following up, allowing you to continuously touch the prospect and keep your product top of mind.
Study dead deals
When marketing and sales are tracking prospects from initial contact to conversion (or lack thereof), it’s easier to find out why some leads don’t pan out. You may uncover a flaw in how your marketing team qualifies leads or find those leads are being handed off to sales prematurely. Sales may start to see patterns that illustrate why some prospects require more time in the pipeline.
While all of these suggestions are useful, the reality is that your sales organization needs to invest in sales automation that has great analytics to be able to provide you with the information you need to make data-driven decisions. This is what our Math of Sales™ solution is built to deliver: real-time analytics that reveal who, what, when and how many of your team’s activities are driving revenue and which are falling short so next steps can be measured and effective.
Could you use some help predicting future sales activities and successes? Request a demo to see how we can help today.