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If you've ever looked at your CRM wondering what to do with all the lost leads, then you'll love the advice I've prepared for you today:
Because you see, a lack of response from a prospect doesn't automatically mean that the sale's gone.
Quite the opposite in fact.
What's more, to move a lost lead further into your sales process, you two just need to reconnect.
And in this post, I'll show you exactly how to do it.
Intrigued? Keep on reading.
BONUS: Ready to start re-engaging lost leads? Then grab those 3 email templates that will help you get started right away. Click here to download >>
Sometimes leads go dark.
Suddenly, they stop responding to your emails.
A person who seemed so interested in buying never gets back to you regarding your proposal (and you know they've viewed it more than once).
And all of a sudden, a deal you though you have in the pocket, falls through the cracks.
For one, it will help you differentiate between those leads who have actually said no, from those who might have been too busy to respond.
As Cara Hogan pointed out at InsideSquared blog:
"A disappearing act is often the perfect candidate for revival. They may be busy and overwhelmed at work, but remain interested in your product. A hard no is often more difficult to overcome, but could also be a revival candidate in the right circumstances, such as a timing objection."
Here's what seems the most obvious reason - they may not have the need for your product or service anymore.
But true as this may be, I don't believe it's the only explanation.
Your response time may play a role in this too. According to Toister Performance Solutions, most customers expect a response within an hour (and 14.5%, within 15 minutes). (data via FastCompany)
So, the chances are that by the time you've finally emailed your lead, they may have already engaged with one of your competitors.
Your prospect may also be too busy to respond. Or they have moved to a new job...
And so, as the first step in re-engaging lost leads, you need to find out why they've stopped responding to your emails.
(Disclaimer: Full credit to Nidhi Singh for suggesting this step.)
There are three possible scenarios for every lost lead in your CRM.
First. They're still interested in your product or service but are either too busy to take things further (or the project got stalled for whatever reason).
Second. They're no longer interested. Perhaps they never truly were interested in your offering.
Third. They were interested. But for one reason or another, they decided to engage with your competitor instead.
And there's the only one way to find out which one is true - by asking your leads directly.
So, email your lost leads with a simple survey, asking them to define their current situation. Here's the email Nidhi suggests:
This survey will help you re-engage lost leads in two ways:
If you're not comfortable surveying your lost leads, then re-engage them by targeting what's known as trigger events.
A trigger event is any new development in your lead's company - a new website, new offices, a new product launch or any other news.
But what's important is that trigger events give you an excuse to reach out and connect with a lead without putting any pressure on them.
Here, let me show you an example. Earlier this week, I noticed that one of my lost leads (they've been "quiet" for about six months) launched a new website. I quickly emailed my contact at the company to congratulate them.
Within an hour I received the reply.
As it turns out, not only they've remembered me but are still interested in working with my company.
And a simple trigger event allowed me to reconnect and find that out.
It's no secret that offering prospects compelling and relevant content can dramatically increase your chances of making the sale.
(And I already wrote about this at length here at Attach. If you've missed the post, check it out here.)
But you can also use content to reconnect with people you haven't engaged with for a while.
If you've published any original research findings, a guide to overcoming a particular problem, your leads may be struggling with, or a report that might spark their interest, then send them a quick notification about it.
PRO OUTREACH TIP: You can also use a two-step process to quickly determine which of your lost leads are still interested in talking to you.
Instead of emailing the content right away, send them a quick note about it first, asking if they'd be interested to see it.
And then, based on the response, estimate the likelihood of a person to become an active lead again.
Let's face it: not every lead you try to re-engage will want to go ahead with the sale.
And they're easy to spot. They'll ignore your content offers, and won't respond to your emails regarding trigger events.
However, these people might still be willing to share their insights into your sales process.
(Or at least, they may find the request unusual enough actually to act on it.)
Plus, their feedback might help you improve your process, eliminating potential reasons for leads going dark.
So, email any lost leads who haven't responded to your previous re-engagement campaigns (i.e. content offers or trigger events), asking them about other things you could have done to win their business.
And then, close the email with a short note asking for permission to keep them on your mailing list.
This way, in spite of losing the sale, you might still gain valuable insight (plus, you might actually retain a person on your lead nurturing list for later).