Lead Generation vs. Lead Management
When embarking on the quest for more sales, you may be confused as to which lead strategy your business needs to vamp up the most: lead generation or lead management. Some use the two terms interchangeably, but they’re actually two very distinct services. It’s a simple difference, but choosing the wrong one can result in an inefficient use of your business’ time and resources. If you’re unsure, this quick guide will help you determine which route will be the most beneficial for your company.
Lead Generation: Getting the Leads
Lead generation is the actual act of creating, or generating, leads. If you have a shortage of prospects for your business or need to produce more engagement and interest in your product or service, lead generation should be your first focus. Since leads make up the very top of a sales funnel, the future growth of your business may depend on finding new and innovative ways to get more leads (and qualified ones). Lead generation works to seek out those who could benefit from your product or service, and it precedes lead management.
Lead Management: Utilizing the Leads
Lead management, however, isn’t for someone who needs more leads; it focuses chiefly on properly managing the leads you already have. Lead generation must come before lead management— there must be leads to manage. Once the leads have been created, the next step in the process is closing that lead, which consists of many steps in itself. The ultimate goal is to make a sale and, ideally, keep a relationship with the prospect for other future business endeavors. Factors that make up lead management include:
- Appointment setting – Once a lead is obtained, the actual sales appointment with your business is made.
- Transforming mediocre leads to high quality leads – This involves taking lukewarm leads and turning them into promising sales possibilities.
- Nurturing long-term leads – Some leads can take multiple months, if not longer, to close. These prospects usually need consistent attention in order to retain interest.
- Tracking each prospect – Keeping proper track of each prospect is vital. TeleArk’s Client Portal allows for 24/7 access of past call notes, records of which prospects have already opted out, and more.
- Utilizing and interpreting this data – Lead management also serves to obtain data on the effectiveness of your lead generation and marketing campaigns. This data is a valuable tool to know if you’re acquiring the right leads, whether sales techniques need tweaking, and so on.
Is it Possible to Need Both Lead Generation and Lead Management?
Yes. It’s easy for a business to fall into a cycle of losing high quality leads due to poor lead management. Thus, they may end up losing out on some great opportunities, bringing them back to the drawing board to obtain even more leads— thus resurfacing the need for lead generation. This cycle is a waste of time, money and overall efficiency.
There’s a fine line between deciding how much time to spend obtaining new leads versus following through with existing ones, and it’s a scale that must stay balanced. In essence, the two facets work as a tag team— they both support each other, and you can’t succeed at one without the other.
In summary, when deciding whether your company is in greater need of lead generation or lead management services, ask yourself: does my business need more leads, or does it need a more efficient system for making deals out of pre-existing prospects? Often, you’ll find that the answer is both.