Q4 Does Not Mean Wait Until 2018

Posted by Dan McDade

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on Sep 27, 2017 3:55:10 PM

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I am already getting questions from prospects about whether they should start a sales lead generation project now or wait until after the holidays. My answer to that question is not based on self-interest.

For every 1,000 suspects you disposition (complete contact with) between now and the end of this year you should expect (on average) the following results:

  • 40 to 50 fully qualified sales opportunities (not lightly qualified marketing leads).
  • 40 to 50 pipeline accounts (from which 20% to 30% will become fully qualified sales opportunities this quarter or next).
  • 250 to 300 qualified with no immediate interest. From this group, you will drive 18 to 22 fully qualified sales opportunities over the next two quarters (ending in March 2018).
  • 400 to 500 no response dispositions (however, you will have learned something about the prospects’ environment, be able to set-up trigger event notifications and since not-qualified companies have been eliminated from this group of prospects the lead rate will be higher than the 4% to 5% experienced in the first cycle of contact).

What happens if you wait? Solid opportunities will be closed this quarter or next by a more agile competitor. You will be playing catch-up in Q1, 2018 rather than hitting the ground running.

About a year ago I wrote a blog about what I call a bubble in the funnel. The following is a quote from that blog:

“Companies are making decisions right now that will cause a bubble in the funnel that will last for months, if not all of 2017. Maybe the outcome won’t be as dramatic as a gas embolism, but it could be. When marketing activity slows down this time of the year, executives will generally start evaluating options in January, make decisions in February and start executing on those decisions in March. The most optimistic sales cycle for the more complex products or solutions is three-to-six months. So, revenue will result in the June – October time frame – the year will almost be gone.

The time to make decisions and execute plans is NOW.”

My advice is don’t repeat a 2017 mistake in 2018. Don’t wait.

Send me an email (dan.mcdade@pointclear.com) to schedule time to talk about planning for Q4 and beyond.

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Topics: Sales Leads

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