Dr Ross McKenzie The Startup Business

How To Convert Leads To Prospects & Prospects To Customers

Most Businesses Are Not Good At Promoting Their Products!

When you think about it, there is not too much to consider when it comes to sales. Like when you break it down, all you are doing is exchanging value. Now of course “value” means different things to different people, but in essence, that is all that is happening. So if you want to sell, then you need to make sure you are providing value – right?

Well only if it was that simple! There are of course other considerations like Kotler’s “marketing mix” that includes the 4 P’s of Price, Product, Place, and finally Promotion. These are all levers that you can adjust and optimise depending upon your specific circumstances.

In my experience however, I think it is the last one, “Promotion” that gets most businesses falling flat on their feet.

They have great products that provide awesome solutions to real needs, and they are priced competitively, while being sufficiently profitable. They have also identified their target market and the channel where these products can be found.

But nothing’s going on! They are not getting any conversions of leads to prospects, and prospects to clients or customers.

Most Businesses Do Not Engage

Now the reason for this failure to convert is simple. These businesses have just misunderstood the need to be fully engaged continually with their target market. This is important because there are just too many distractions or “noise”, these days.

Like, have you ever cut out from a newspaper or magazine, an article or an advertisement that you thought was useful or interesting, with the intent to follow up, may be even purchase it? Perhaps you have used your smartphone and taken a photo of it instead? Or if it was online, you have book marked, or made as a favourite, the web page url, because you were going to get back to it – but never did?

What’s happening here?

Well, its simply that you are being distracted. The initial advertisement or article, created some interest or desire, of which could have been either from within your logical brain, or from your emotional heart (always remember we have logical reasons and emotional reasons for buying things), or perhaps a combination of both, but in the end, you moved on!

So, we need to put in place a strategy in which your target market is always actively engaged with you and your business.

You Need To Be Clear On Your Objectives

To do this effectively, there are five steps that if you follow, will improve your conversion rates and as you are about to discover, these steps are more common sense if anything else.

The first step you need to do is to be very clear on your overall objective. For example, maybe what you are wanting to do, is just get people to subscribe to your mailing list, or access something for “free”. Perhaps you are wanting them to book an appointment with you, or yes, actually buy something! Because if you are not being specifically clear with a laser focus, your messaging will be too broad and be potentially confusing to your target market.

The next thing you need to do, is to define what are you offering. Is it a product, is it a service, is it an opportunity? In terms of benefits, what does your target market get, in exchange for doing something? Is this compelling enough to trigger the required action? For instance, does it take them away from “pain” and towards “pleasure” as they are two fundamental motivators.

Once you have figured this out, then the third step is to create a marketing “hook” and pitch. Depending upon the channel being used, this will be in the form of a headline for an advertisement, or maybe an opening question, if it is a physical sales presentation. The hook’s purpose is not to sell, instead it is to draw them deeper into your world by creating interest and desire.

The fourth step you need to do is designing the process and integrating whatever tools or technology you require, to make everything seamless.

Then once you have done that, the final step five is about testing. Is it working, what are your conversion rates now? Have you achieved better results? What is working and what is not? This is just about constant and never-ending improvement, or as the quality gurus of Japan say… Kaizen!

Sky Dive – Why Not?

For most of us, learning how to jump out of a perfectly operating aircraft is not the most natural of choices but that is exactly what I did over thirty years ago! At the time, I was working in a rural town in Australia where the local store had a poster on its window which said something like “Sky Dive – Why Not?”. Now prior to then, I never had considered such an activity. However, over several weeks reading that poster and variations of it, I found myself asking the question but eventually ran out of reasons of “why not”! The reality was that I answered all my objections over a period of a few weeks!

Of course, Kotler’s “marketing mix” and his 4 P’s of Price, Product, Place, and Promotion, had a lot to do with it, but guess which one got me over the line?

Boosting Your Conversions

So now think about your own business. Regardless of whether yours is a traditional one, or largely an online business, what if you start to take a more strategic view of your marketing mix. What if you work through these five steps by firstly clarifying your objectives, defining your offer, creating your hook and pitch, then setting up a slick process and finally keep testing your results and fine tuning everything – could that improve your conversions? Do you think that could flow on to boosting your revenue?

Whether you are building a list of subscribers, or selling high end consulting services to businesses, the principles are the same. If you implement them you will get some awesome results!

Take Away

Remember, having the best products and at the best prices will not guarantee you sales. Even if your customers or target market can easily find you! You must engage them in a way that draws them in, connect with them of course logically, but also emotionally.

When you achieve this, who knows you may even get your customers jumping out of aeroplanes!

Dr Ross McKenzie The Startup Business