Part 1 of 7 Numbers to Know to Grow Your Business: Leads

Posted by Marty Dickinson on Feb 5, 2010

How many leads did you get last month? I don’t mean visits to your website or even those that called you on the phone or submitted something to your contact us form. Those are just “suspects.” Then, if you’re lucky, some of them will turn into “prospects.” If you’re a good sales person, several of those prospects will finally turn into leads.

Now, here’s the kicker. Any idea how much money you spent to get those “leads?” How much has each lead cost you in marketing dollars to attract? If your cost is $20 per lead, can you imagine what the difference would be in your bottom line if you could reduce that number from $20 to $18 or even $15?

Over the next six of seven entries to this blog, I’m going to unveil 7 secret numbers that you need to be able to track every day, or at least every week, to assure your company is growing in a positive direction.

Once you form the habit of looking at all of these numbers combined, you will see how easy it is to use the numbers to PLAN for your future instead of always looking back on the results.

In this crazy economy, I honestly don’t know how anyone would be able to look the other way and NOT pay attention to these 7 numbers.

I’ve been in business for 15 years and in the sales arena for even more. And, I was only introduced to these 7 numbers a few weeks ago by a local guy here in Denver, Jeff Prager.

Jeff and his team run a web-based accounting system he developed.

And, contrary to other accounting systems I’ve used, the first goal above anything else with his accounting system is to keep a running total of these 7 numbers. So, literally, I can spend just 5 minutes every few days in my accounting system by running this one simple report and know all the 7 numbers I’m going to be covering in this series. Pretty cool. Anyway, let’s get back to the actual discussion about today’s topic…leads!

What is it exactly that you need to know that you can’t mentally store in your mind week after week? I mean, most of us can think, “Hmm, I think I got 10 new leads last month.

But, there’s a lot more to it than that…

There are three things you need to know about your leads, including:

1. What main sources did your leads come from? The Internet, a trade show, a magazine ad are examples of main source.

2. What “specific sources” did your leads come from? Organic search, PPC, Another website, response to a blog post on someone else’s blog, are all examples of specific lead source.

3. How would you rank the quality value of each of those leads from your source and specific source?

4. Where are they in the sales cycle? I like to rank my leads with the following:

.10 = suspect (not even really a lead yet)

.25 = prospect (someone who is actually interested and we’re talking more)

.50 = proposal is made (just waiting for questions to come in from proposal and next discussion)

.75 = proposal was accepted and the deal is probably going to happen)

.90 = proposal accepted (just waiting for the check or credit card payment, since I do everything pre-paid)

1.00 = client

0 = dead lead

99 = former client

5. How much traffic to your website do you need to get one lead?

6. How many leads to you need to get a sale

7. How much time or money do you need to spend to get those leads?

Number 6 and 7 there are sort of getting into the next part of the series, so I’ll stop there. Let’s just say that for this step, I’d like you to consider all 7 of those items as they relate to simply getting and managing leads.

Your traffic can be monitored, of course, through your Google Analytics account. The quality of the lead can be determined when you talk on the phone or receive an email. And, of course, the number of leads you need to get a sale is called a sales conversion rate. I’m going to go into more detail on those in part 2 and 3 of this series.

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Checkout the accounting package I was telling you about earlier if you have another few moments.

Sure, it’s a product that I am promoting as one of my many affiliate products now and let it be publicly known that I will be financially compensated if you click the link and buy their product. But, I’ll tell ya, it took me evaluating this system for a MONTH before I finally was convinced to give it a shot. We’re only in our first month of using it and our sales planning time for 2010 has been cut from like, what, 30 hours or so of manual spreadsheet creating, to like minutes of clicking reports from the system.

Anyway, I don’t want to get too crazy on you about the product. Next time, I’ll cover Part 2, the second number you must be watching every day or at least every week to even HOPE to survive in business and grow.

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