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Archive for January, 2012

Establishing Relationships and Best Practices

Monday, January 23rd, 2012

January 23, 2021 – Establishing a relationship with a prospect depends on a lot of things going right. One way of looking at it is to say that it is the craft of the salesman; whatever methods are employed by the salesperson are fine as long as they work. A salesperson, working on commission, will naturally hone their own best practices and deliver results. This is a self monitoring way of operating that makes sense. But what sales manager hasn’t wished that some of the skills belonging to their most effective sales person couldn’t rub off on their least effective. After all, it is towards this end that sales people undergo training.

But the establishment and adoption of best practices doesn’t have to be relegated to showing a new guy the ropes and then depending on him relying on himself beyond that. Best practices can be enforced across an entire sales organization by adopting a lead management system. Lead management differs from CRM in that it is laser focused on the task of turning prospects into customers. This being the case, it has different core functionality that is based less on tracking a customer relationship and more based on contacting leads converting a sale for the first time.

One of the real strengths of lead management software is that it enables sales managers to adapt their best practices in response to the needs of their sales staff and changes in market conditions. Best practices can take shape in a number of ways. Examples include; the number, timing, and content of automatically sent marketing emails; automatic contact schedules for leads, i.e., when uncontacted leads become ripe for another contact attempt; and content of sales scripts. Intelligent lead assignment strategies can also be tweaked to ensure that the right leads are being assigned to the right sales agents.

Leaving the establishment of customer relationships to the various strategies of individual sales reps isn’t necessary. Using lead management software, it is possible to enforce proven sales strategies that ensure that no leads are ignored, and every lead benefits from a sound contact strategy.

2012 Forecasts for Insurance, Mortgage, Higher Ed

Thursday, January 19th, 2012

January 19, 2021 — Ah, the New Year.  January always offers a chance to move forward with a clean slate and an eye for the future.  In that spirit, here are some blog posts that offer a look forward to 2012 and some predictions and previews for what the year has to offer in private-sector higher education, mortgage and insurance.

#1 - Five reasons why for-profit schools are here to stay via @washingtonpost – In this column, Jay Mathew’s begins his look at the future of for-profit education with a clear and definite bias against the institutions, and initial reluctance to review the book titled “Change.edu: Rebooting for the New Talent Economy” written by Kaplan’s Chairman, Andrew S. Rosen. While the book didn’t shake Mathew’s feeling completely, he noted “Rosen convinced me that for-profit educational ventures are here to stay.” He went on to detail five reasons why. http://wapo.st/sSAwCQ

#2 - The Mortgage Battlefield of 2012 via @NatlMortgagePro – John Walsh offers up his predictions for the embattled mortgage industry from the frontlines of the struggle, including continued low rates and the reemergence of innovative products. http://dlvr.it/12P29W

#3 - Experts 2012 Rate Outlook via @MortgageNewsMND – Rob Chrisman gives an overview of mortgage rates and industry predictions based on outlooks from industry experts Freddie, Fannie and others. Predictions anticipate a similar year to 2011, with HARP 2.0 and expected low interest rates throughout the year likely to have a positive impact. http://tinyurl.com/cwl8zfe

#4 - Three Ways Insurers Will Compete on Data in 2012 via @insurancetech –  highlights how analytics is likely to change insurers approach to underwriting, claims, and risk management in 2012 http://ow.ly/87ZXG

#5 – Health care reform you can expect in 2012 via @Bankrate – The piece looks at what patients, doctors, and insurers should expect from the pieces of the affordable care act going into law in 2012. http://bit.ly/zuUE7U

#6 – Insurance Veterans’ Forecasts for 2012 via @ijournal – The piece discusses the future of the industry in the coming year with nine different industry leaders to get a better grasp on what to expect. http://bit.ly/yjGcS0

#7 – 3 Key Challenges Facing Agents in 2012 via @ijournal - In this podcast with Bob Rusbuldt, CEO of Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America, Bob articulates what he believes are the three biggest challenges facing independent agents and brokers in 2012. http://bit.ly/z6gNSb

Is Lead Management One of Your Resolutions?

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012

It’s a new year. If you’ve made any resolutions about growing your business, i.e., providing better service to your prospects, working more efficiently, or even just making more money there’s a quick way you can lock in all three. Lead Management software is a software solution which helps you get in contact with leads more quickly than by any other means.

Contacting leads quickly involves several steps being taken at a high speed:

1. Receive the lead from the lead source

2. Distribute the lead to a sales rep who is best suited to do business with them

3. Ensure that a Sales Rep acts contacts the lead immediately

Using Lead Management Software guarantees that these steps are taken as quickly as is possible. There is no better way to improve your prospect service than by using the right tools for the job. In this case, the right tool for the job is a lead management solution with an integrated lead dialer. Using a CRM for lead management will yield substandard results. Prospect Service is an art and science all its own. Being the first on the phone with a prospect is an important first step in changing the prospect into a customer. Speed to contact is important, but it’s not the total solution. Intelligent lead distribution that pairs sales rep to prospect based on expertise, licensure, or other criteria helps make sure meaningful connections are made.

If you have resolved to grow your business this year, Lead Management should be on your radar.