iPad BoxSend prospects an empty iPad box as part of a mailing campaign.  Leave a note in the box that says, “We know your time is super valuable, but if you’d be willing to come have a conversation with us to solve XYZ problem that you already have, we’ll hand you the iPad that was in this box.”

President of Heinz Marketing, Matt Heinz, explained the unique campaign during his presentation, “Close Your Highest Margin Sales Leads,” at the Inside Sales Virtual Summit.

Heinz’s entire presentation is below:

An iPad is by no means inexpensive, and purchasing and mailing multiple iPad boxes is not as easy or as cheap as sending out an email, Heinz said.  However, the results are amazing.

“We’ve done this with a few companies, and we generate twice as many appointments as we give away iPads.”  Half point-blank accept the offer, the other half are so impressed they end up stopping by the booth, meeting up with someone from the company for lunch or otherwise engaging in a conversation about the campaign.

The main point is to only target the highest margin leads. “You’ve got to spend money to make money, and this is a great opportunity to do it,” Heinz said. “But make sure you focus on the right prospects that are going to give you the kind of dollars that you are looking for.”

Companies Don’t Starve, They Drown

Heinz says the problem most companies face is not a lack of opportunities but rather being overwhelmed by too many opportunities and by too many things going on around them.

 The solution: focus on the leads that matter and the methods that work.

Too Many Inbound Leads

Being really good at driving inbound leads can actually be a detriment to a company’s sales process.  “A high volume of inbound leads can decrease the amount of high margin sales you can get,” said Heinz. “Not every lead is created equal. Not every lead is qualified to buy what you’re selling.  Not every lead is going to have the budget to spend what you want to get for that product, for that deal.”

Instate A Crisp Lead Management Process

Heinz suggests being really crisp not only with definitions of leads and opportunities but also with the process–what happens next, and how does it happen?

Whether a company uses a marketing automation tool or manages their leads manually, the process needs to be consistent.  “The more consistently a company does these things, the more consistently it can execute,” Heinz said.  “The company will have a higher capacity to increase sales at a flat cost,” he said.

Reevaluate Activity Scoring Methods

Just because someone got five points for going to a website and ten points for downloading a demo doesn’t mean they are a good prospect.

One suggestion is to develop a scoring methodology that breaks prospects into a series of different stages of scores based on those activities.  This allows for more precision with requirements for getting into different stages, enabling companies to more easily take certain lead scores and move them into sales, or keep them out of sales.

Engage Prospects Before They’re Active Buyers

According to Heinz, the biggest opportunity for salespeople today is to engage prospects upstream before they’re active buyers. A Gartner study indicates more than 65 percent of the buying process is completed by the time the buyer reaches out to a seller or supplier, Heinz says. What that means is buyers have done their own research; they’ve generated their own opinions.

“If you are not engaging that prospect until they get to the end of that process, then you are more likely to be a commodity,” Heinz said. “They are comparison shopping. You will not get those high margin deals unless you’re building relationships early on.”

Realize You Sell to People, Not Buildings

Buildings don’t write checks.  Even if you sell business-to-business, people still make the decision to buy or not to buy your product. “I think it’s easy to forget that,” Heinz said. “It’s easy to forget this in the tactics as well. When your marketing team is writing content, sometimes those marketing messages and those email templates get edited to the point where they’re way too formal. They speak to the building and not to the people.”

If salespeople and marketers can engage with the prospects they’re selling to at both an intellectual as well as an emotional level, it accelerates that level of trust; it accelerates the path to credibility and preference. Heinz said, “People buy from people they like; people buy from people they trust.”

Don’t Rush Your Prospects: Understand Where They’re At In The Process

Heinz says he’s come across numerous enterprise sales teams who at the end of the quarter say they have a deal that’s about to close.  Yet, when Heinz asks if the deal is it in procurement, they say ‘not yet’, and they are unsure of how long the procurement process for that client will take.

The procurement process is not fast with most enterprise companies. So, if the salesperson doesn’t understand how the customer needs to engage and buy, friction is created, Heinz says. The greater the friction, the slower those deals are going to go, the lower the conversion rate and the less likely sellers are going to be able to maintain the price they wants for the effort they’re putting in.

Having a really effective means of separating out the good from the bad, the ready to buy from the not ready to buy, is critical.

Understanding Your Prospects

Don’t bring an iPad to a meeting with Microsoft.  This may seem obvious, but Heinz says you would be surprised how many people do it.

Go through emails and any other form of correspondence you’ve had with that prospect and learn how to communicate with them, then teach your sales team.

4-Step Plan for Converting More High Margin Leads

1. Do the Math

Heinz says he is amazed at how many companies don’t have a plan, monthly and quarterly goals for hitting annual sales quotas. “Having a goal and quantifying what success looks like is the first objective.

2. Create a clear customer profile

According to Heinz, it is critical for companies to define who they are selling to and what those customers care about.

3.Map the sales and buying process

Companies need to be really smart about making sure the buyer’s journey matches their sales process.

4. Plan to fire lots of bullets

The most successful companies in the world do a lot of testing and validation. In other words, they fire a lot of bullets to see which ones hit the mark. Then, they validate the results before putting down the pistol to pick up the cannon.

The companies that are mediocre, that don’t achieve the success they could, build the cannon first without validating it.

Do the math. Know who you’re selling to, but be smart and rapid about validating those premises before you move forward.

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