For a long time—perhaps too long—the prevailing perspective in the lead generation industry has been that “more is better.” But the hard truth is that this approach is no longer very effective.
Lead generation efficiency should be the focus and main goal for companies today. Get set up with usable strategies in this panel with highly experienced lead generation experts.
To help companies adapt to today’s market reality, Convoso CMO Lisa Leight moderates a discussion with Rob Seaver, Executive Director of PACE, and sales coach Jason Cutter of Cutter Consulting Group to share strategies for more efficient lead generation.
Watch the video of their conversation here, or read a summary of the can’t-miss highlights below.
1. Quality Over Quantity as a Mindset
Rob Seaver says that, over the course of his time in the lead generation space, there has been a shift away from focusing on quantity—more leads, more calls, more everything—toward quality. But now, with consumers on guard and regulators at all levels looking to take action, the shift toward quantity has become imperative.
“I’m seeing, finally, an acceptance and even an adoption of [quality standards] with people navigating their backends to do more with less,” says Seaver. “That becomes a benefit to the consumer.”
“We must,” Seaver continued, “focus on those leads that are generated with consent, generated with intent, and generated some sort of consumer-protection mindset behind the scenes.”
Lead costs may be going up with this model, as teams focus on working fewer higher-quality leads. But the upshot from working them more intelligently is still greater profit potential and a lower compliance risk.
To cultivate the right leads, Jason Cutter recommends:
- Zero in on key demographics of those leads you need to buy and create a well-defined, detailed target audience.
- Reverse engineer your last batch of enrollments to understand what customers have in common so that you can buy more of those leads.
2. Navigating Compliance
Lead generators face an increasingly complex regulatory environment, with not just the FCC clamping down on common practices but regulators at every level of government looking to protect consumers from spam, scams, and unwanted contact.
“What we’re seeing is a constant, steady drumbeat that to be more consumer-friendly in our actions is a requirement,” says Seaver. “It isn’t an option any longer for you to abuse consumers and operate in that dark-gray area. Those approaches aren’t going to be allowable any more.”
Despite this, many organizations still remain ignorant of these critical changes to rules and regulations impacting their businesses. Although resources are tight, the panel pointed to outside expertise as essential.
Yet, Seaver says, many organizations lack internal and external counsel. They simply rely on educational events and content like this webinar to respond to compliance issues.
But Seaver says this shouldn’t be the case:
“I encourage anyone to get a professional opinion. Even if it costs you a few thousand dollars to come in and look at the way you’re operating, and look at things you’ve written on your website and the promises you’re making, I think that that is at least a good starting point for your budget right now. And I think that would help eradicate the mass amounts of ignorance we’re seeing right now.”
3. Agent Onboarding and Training
Jason Cutter says that the quantity-over-quality approach has also long affected the way lead generation teams hire their teams.
This strategy too often looks like this: “Hire as many people as you can. Put them in a room. Teach them some stuff. Throw them out there. And if they don’t succeed, fire them and hire some more. And maybe 2 out of 10 employees will stick around.”
Rather than go through a costly hiring process that increases compliance risks, Cutter says that decision-makers need to focus on making the most of the employees they do hire. And this begins with 2 important steps:
- Effective onboarding: Don’t just throw agents to the wolves. Put them through a robust onboarding process first. This process should include onboarding into your company culture—your mission, your vision, and your core values.
- Teaching soft skills: Initial company training too often focuses only on product training. Agents are taught what to sell, but not how to sell it. Cutter says focusing on soft skills like selling, listening, and empathizing can help your teams be more effective over the long run.
4. Retention strategies
Issues with approaches to personnel don’t end there, of course. Too many companies, says Cutter, think that training is “a one-and-done thing.” In this light, it’s no wonder turnover is such a widespread issue.
What these companies are actually doing with a training program that consists only of an initial crash course is forcing their workers to drink from a firehose. Once they have to apply that training in real situations, they forget or cast aside everything they learned.
“You can practice all you want, but once the bullets really start flying, everyone’s going to go on instinct. And they don’t have enough instincts because you haven’t taught them enough.”
So for the team to do better and to retain them, you need to employ continuous education.
“You’ve got to take what you train them on and give it to them in nuggets over the next 3-6 months.”
Cutter recommends developing a plan for this process and leveraging any of the number of platforms out there that help gamify this training.
5. Invest in Quality Data
Beyond culture, coaching, and compensation, the panel also discussed how equipping teams with quality data can actually support morale and retention, too.
“I had a client once who was using co-reg data, fed into a crazy dialer setting, and agents were doing 600 to 800 dials a day to have 100 pickups and hopefully close 2 to 3 sales…That is brutal for morale. If you want to turn over your entire staff, then go ahead and play that game.”
Instead, for morale and overall performance, it’s crucial to invest in quality data. Of course, you need the right approach to make the most of that better data. The panel walked through essential ways to help agents do just that:
- Speed to lead is always important.
- Beyond speed, though, it’s important to realize that every lead source has an optimum approach that can be taken. Tailor your outreach cadences to the type of data you’re calling.
- Reach out with an omnichannel approach. Improve contact rates and acquisition costs by using a diversified set of outreach approaches.
6. Leverage Your Management Team
To truly do more with less, it’s crucial that lead generators find value at all levels of their organization. The panel closed out their discussion by discussing two ways that management teams can be optimized for performance.
Optimizing your organizational structure
“One big thing I see is that once someone gets promoted to a frontline manager role, they get put into email and meeting hell.”
Rather than focusing on helping their personnel, these managers suddenly have to focus on non-strategic administrative work that impedes their ability to support agents on the phone. As a result, Cutter says, agents’ performance suffers.
Optimizing your spending
While frontline managers need to be able to keep their focus on the frontline, the rest of a company’s decision-makers need to keep their eyes on savings opportunities. And this goes not just for funds, but time.
This is especially true in times of economic downturn, says Rob Seaver. This time of belt-tightening and heightened awareness can help you identify ways to make more of what you have. Seaver says his team is consistently:
- Looking for ways to increase automation and save time, particularly with artificial intelligence
- Renegotiating costs and fees whenever a contract goes up for renewal
- Eliminating bloat in all areas of the company
Strategy 6½. Choosing the Right Dialer Technology
“In times like this, where there’s a lot of upheaval with the economy and inflation… Can you do more? Buy higher quality leads? Can you provide better training? Can you pay more for your reps, and have better retention and better quality, so when opportunities and phone calls connect through a platform like Convoso, you have the right people who can knock it out of the park.” – Jason Cutter
To achieve truly efficient lead generation, having the right dialer technology is imperative. Convoso is designed to help lead generation teams maximize performance and ROI, while supporting compliance in today’s complex regulatory environment.
To learn more about our powerful dialing software, schedule a free demo today and see for yourself how our solution can increase contact rates and lower lead costs.
DISCLAIMER: The information on this page, and related links, is provided for general education purposes only and is not legal advice. Convoso does not guarantee the accuracy or appropriateness of this information to your situation. You are solely responsible for using Convoso’s services in a legally compliant way and should consult your legal counsel for compliance advice. Any quotes are solely the views of the quoted person and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Convoso.