What is Lead Management Software?
For those small businesses who are just now investigating how lead management software features can work for them, here is a brief description of exactly what it is:
Lead management is a part of the customer life cycle: referring to the process businesses use to capture interest in the product or service they offer, and convert that interest into sales. No matter who the demographic audience is, both B2C and B2B lead management software hold a unique capability to optimise the sales funnel.
Of course, this process is vital for every business hoping to meaningfully increase sales as it allows the creation of tailored targeting strategies. By understanding who your interest demographic are and designing a specific funnel, businesses can identify and convert potential customers into clients; adding value to the bottom line of your business.
Leads require a lot of handling as they are processed from initial discovery into leads and finally (hopefully) into accounts:
The Lead Management Process in Stages
1 - Lead Generation
Lead management begins with the generation, or discovery of leads. This usually encompasses the scope of work that marketing and publicity teams do to get people excited about and engaging with your brand.
The importance of lead management software first becomes apparent here. Leads will begin as a piece of captured data that indicates whether a lead is ‘warm’; aka whether they are likely to become a sale. Warm leads are moved to the sales team where they are shifted into the second stage of lead management.
2- Lead Handling
Integrated sales and lead management software helps the sales team assess a couple of considerations for this next stage:
These questions can all be answered by looking at data from previous leads in lead management CRM software. Knowledge of your target audience and their interests will help you decide the warmth of a lead (how likely they are to make a purchase from you) and assign the lead a percentage.
The percentage score should indicate how urgently the lead should be moved on to the next stage, how much interaction the lead will require, and which salesperson has the best track record in conversions.
3- Lead Nurturing
Lead nurturing is technically another way of saying customer relationship management: a consideration taken at every stage in the funnel. However, the phrase fits neatly here because it describes the process sales reps go through turning the lead into a valuable relationship, rather than just pushing for a one-off purchase.
An imperative part of nurturing is creating engaging, personalised communication with leads. Knowing how frequently to contact leads, and what content will best interest them should be based on historical data. The better you store data from previous leads in your lead management cloud software, the more accurate your future targeting will be.
Emails are the most common way of communicating with leads because they can be personalised, automated, analysed and linked to the lead’s pipeline (a visual representation of a prospect’s stage in the sales process).
Finally the hard work that your teams have put in from capture to conversion pays off. Once a lead has been closed, whether won or lost, the next stage concerns retaining a valuable relationship with that contact or account. The aim of lead management software for small business is to incentivise repeat custom, and build loyalty to your brand. If you’re lucky the loyal customer becomes an advocate to your brand, going on to become a secondary interest generator: adding value to your bottom line.
How Can Small Businesses Successfully Harness Lead Management?
For small businesses with a rapidly growing customer base, effective and measured lead management can seem like an overwhelming waste of time. However, by stratifying incoming leads by their potential for income, you can save yourself time on closed lost deals, and find out exactly what it is about your small business that attracts customers to buy.
The manual handling of the full customer life cycle is time consuming, which is why many businesses from small not-for-profits to global enterprises are opting for lead management software to streamline and optimise this process for them.
“You have to generate revenue as effectively as possible. And to do that, you must create a data driven sales culture. Data trumps intuition.”
Lead management software modules are cloud-based tools that help teams manage certain processes in the funnel, saving time and allowing reps to focus on building strong, loyal relationships between brand and customer. For small businesses, these tools are invaluable as small teams can easily and efficiently handle large volumes of incoming leads in an ROI-effective way: turning your humble sales force into a high-performing team of all-star reps.
The Benefits of Lead Management Software
Lead management software is a comprehensive suite of tools that helps sales teams run a smoothly-operating, high-performing department. In each stage of the lead management process, the software provides a different function that automates repetitive manual processes. For sales teams, this allows time for a heavier focus on building brand and customer relationships, ultimately strengthening your place in the market by building loyalty and advocacy with clients (something which cannot easily be done by a software programme!)
Without lead management software, some of the challenges a sales team will typically face are:
For small businesses in particular, reducing time spent on repetitive processes and eliminating error risk allows small teams to become high-capacity very quickly, perfect for SMEs in the rapid growth stage of expansion.
Investing in a powerful lead management software is financially beneficial for a business of any size, but small businesses in particular will benefit from the generation of high-quality leads with fewer resources and personnel. Expenditure on the software subscription is negated by the reduction of resources attributed to ‘cold’ leads and low-intent clients.
In the 21st Century, Lead Management software has become the norm for all of the businesses that wish to compete in a global marketplace. What used to be considered complex or ‘supplementary’ technology is now an affordable essential, and small businesses will find that lead management software price is varied, meaning there will always be a budget-friendly option.
Functions and their benefits:
No matter the industry you are in, your business needs an excellent lead management workflow, which can always stand to be improved. In the onboarding stage your software provider should pre-assess the needs of your teams, highlight areas of improvement and implement a customised solution which solves the specific challenges faced by your business.
How Can Small Businesses Start Using Lead Management Software?
First of all define what you need from your lead management provider, as well as how much you are willing to invest in your software. From this information, you should be able to find the best fit for your business.
For example, do they offer scalable subscriptions? One of the biggest considerations for small businesses when finding lead management software should be ensuring that the provider offers scalable subscriptions. The tool needs to be adaptable to ensure you are never paying for more features than you need. Additionally it should scale up as your business grows, with an expanding capacity to handle an increased lead flow. Always keep the future of your business in mind when choosing your provider.
Next, the provider should have a clean and easy-to-use interface. Easy work saves you time and money on your onboarding time and allows you to begin generating successes sooner. The provider should offer comprehensive guidance and platform training, whether through tailored walk-throughs or detailed instructional videos.
Once the system is implemented you can begin enjoying the rewards of an accelerated lead management process!
Optimiser’s Lead Management
Optimiser’s lead management software does all the above, and more. For a scalable subscription and completely customised suite of tools, you can:
Optimiser is a comprehensive CRM software company, providing businesses a customisable solution to their personal goals for sales, productivity, and growth. Powerful integrated modules include lead management software, a B2B sales toolkit, automated marketing suite and more for sale under a single subscription. Try Optimiser’s CRM software demo with access to the full Enterprise Licence FREE for 30 days, and find out how you can skyrocket productivity in just one month!
Get in touch with our expert team for a customised walk-through of the platform, or sign up to our FREE 30-day trial for access to the Enterprise License full software suite, including the best CRM lead management software on the market.