For one client, it takes 9.82 touches to engage with a prospect. The result of these touches is what we call a disposition: PointClear’s term for completing contact with a decision maker or company (some programs lend themselves to dispositioning by contact and some by company).
This approach yields a 5% lead rate. Our leads are equivalent to what SiriusDecisions calls a Level 4 or 5 lead—well-qualified leads.
We invest about 10,000 touches to generate 50 leads.
To put these numbers into perspective, in 2017 we will complete over 500,000 touches to disposition roughly 50,000 companies on behalf of our clients.
These dispositions will drive over 2,000 highly qualified leads, and another 2,000 pipeline accounts (which are companies where, with a scheduled next step, consistently deliver a 20% to 30% lead rate) and 15,000 nurture accounts (which are qualified companies where the timing is not right for a sales follow-up—but they stay on this filtered list which yields a high lead rate on future touches).
What Is Multi-Touch?
To reduce sales lead generation cost, you need to optimize the value of each prospect. One way to do this is to avoid under-touching your targets.
Touches are a combination of dials, voicemails, emails and in some cases direct mail (multiple media). They are orchestrated by our proprietary CRM (PinPoint), but executed by highly qualified business development reps. We strongly believe that great technology, while necessary, does not replace great conversations.
A couple of analogies: Is it the horse that wins the race regardless of the jockey? Of course not. Does the bat hit home runs or is it the hitter? A great horse, or the world’s best bat, are useless without the jockey or hitter. Great technology is useless without someone with the skills and experience to have great conversations. The technology prompts the best next touch. The human executes that direction with excellent conversations (based on call flow, not scripts), well-crafted voicemails and carefully written emails.
Here is a sample touch cycle, or cadence, for one client:
Recently we delivered a lead to a client’s sales rep and he replied: “How did you ever get to this executive? I have been trying to get to that person for two years. How did you do it?” Well, the individual responded to voicemail #3. Persistence (across multiple cycles), with professionalism, works.
We dial at different times of the day (which is why we might dial twice or more in one day, but zero out and only leave one voicemail on any given day) and our voicemails and emails are educational in nature and build on one another. They are not salesy.
Know When to Move On
Each cycle of contact reaches the point of diminishing return after 3 to 4 cycles of contact. You should experiment with touch cycles and media mix for your solution or service. However, persistence and a mix of media pay off. A combination of proactive, strategic outbound in addition to taking advantage of reactive inbound ensures that you are at the table in strategic deals rather than becoming column fodder in a deal already won by a competitor (or missing out on the deal completely).
Lastly, we find that senior executives are 2.5 times more responsive to quality multi-touch campaigns than are junior executives. Executives tell me frequently that they would have talked to a sales rep (who left a great message) if they had just called back again. Remember, persistence, with professionalism. Make it your mantra (like PointClear associates do).
I welcome your questions and feedback.