6 posts categorized "Inquiry Management"

07/13/2011

Typical Points of Inquiry Leakage

Leakage happens because most companies, unfortunately, are not counting all the inquiries they receive, nor are they attributing the inquiries to their proper sources…When this occurs, the marketing department will lose the ability to properly credit the lead-generating campaign that caused the person to make contact.

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Three Types of Inquiry Management Programs

Generally, I have found that there are three types of inquiry management programs. From fulfill and forget to deep nurturing. Let's look at the three types.

Fulfill and Forget: Low Touch

Fulfill and forget inquiries are just that. Usually these are B2C but also low-cost B2B products. Products are sold through retailers or distributors and resellers. The manufacturer advertises and typically drives inquirers to a Web site, a toll-free number, and/or most likely a retail establishment. The manufacturers products are usually less than a few hundred dollars, the margins are small and they don't control the sales channel. They advertise for name recognition (brand awareness) and to drive immediate need buyers into the retail store. Fulfillment is usually not done or is minimal, inquiries are not sent to the sales channel, and in some cases a database of inquirers are not kept (not recommended).

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The Rule of 45: Predicting Sales Results From Inquiries

The Rule of 45 is the basic measurement premise from which you can measure the effectiveness of virtually all lead generation programs. It is a steady, reliable rule which simply says that 45% of all inquiries (not just qualified sales leads), will buy from someone. The timeframe for this purchase is usually, but not always within 12 months. The percent that buys in three months is between 10%-15% and the percent that buys in six months is 26%.

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No Wonder Inquiry Management is Difficult - Look at the Departments Involved!

When you look at the number of people and departments that touch a sales inquiry to get it processed, no wonder the system sometimes breaks down.

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Marketing Qualification Stages

The following is an excerpt from: James Obermayer, Managing Sales Leads: Turning Cold Prospects Into Hot Customers, (Mason, Ohio, Textere an imprint of Thomson/South-Western, 2007) and Racom Books, Page 108

Marketing Process Prior to Inquiry Distribution

 

Marketing Qualification Stages 1

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Business Rules for Inquiry Management

Business rules are in every organization. In sales and marketing there are rules for order entry, sales quotas, and booking and shipping orders. But there are seldom, if any, rules about how the extremely important corporate asset called sales inquiries should be managed.

The justification for business rules for inquiry management is simple: People generally follow rules. Once a set of rules is in place, adhering to the rules is less difficult than you might imagine. The vast majority of us are essentially law-abiding people and business rules are generally looked upon as a set of soft laws of business.

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