It pays to have good advice at your fingertips when running a successful business. The 11th Annual Smart Hustle Small Business Conference, held on October 20, 2016, is a great place to get it. The event will attract experts like Karen Peacock, an Intuit QuickBooks executive who will share her advice for small business owners.
About Karen Peacock
Karen Peacock is the Vice President of Small Business at Intuit. She has a BA in Applied Mathematics from Harvard University, and an MBA from Stanford. She is also a recipient of the YWCA Tribute to Women Award.
Karen will be representing Intuit at the conference, a well-known company whose small business offerings include QuickBooks. It’s worth noting that $1.5 trillion of commerce goes through QuickBooks annually. As the person in charge of small business offerings, Karen understands how important support is to entrepreneurs, which is why she will be at the conference to relay the best advice that Intuit usually shares with small business owners.
Here is a peek at some Intuit business tips:
1. Leveraging Freelancers Will Help Keep Your Business Expenses Down
Surveys show that more than a third of the American workforce consists of freelancers. As a business looking to cut expenses that your budget doesn’t cover, it pays to use freelancers. Freelancers cost little in terms of hiring fees and overhead expenses, and you can hire them when you need specific services. This offers a win-win situation that allows you to minimize business costs and allow your business to operate efficiently on a small budget.
2. Thinking Outside the Box Will Raise Your Likelihood Of Getting Startup Financing
It is difficult to get startup financing. Not everyone is willing to take a risk of backing a new business that may fail in a few months. However, you can do certain things to raise your chances of getting the financing you need:
- Blow your own trumpet by highlighting your prior management and industry experience.
- Prepare a well-thought-out business plan to indicate your seriousness.
- Improve your personal credit score to show you are trustworthy.
- Improve your business credit score to show that your business can be trusted with investments.
- Invest your own personal capital to reassure investors that you have skin in the game.
Intuit’s Small Business Center offers many more tips for running your business successfully. The Smart Hustle Small Business Conference is where you will get access to many of them courtesy of Karen Peacock.
About The Smart Hustle Small Business Conference
The Smart Hustle Small Business Conference is the brainchild or 4X entrepreneur, best-selling author, speaker, and editor of Smart Hustle Magazine, Ramon Ray.
It will take place on October 20, 2016, in New York City from 8am-4pm.
The event will bring together over 300 small business owners to network and learn from each other.
Featured speakers include conference host Ramon Ray, entrepreneur BJ Bowlen, and business psychologist Dr. Sharon Melnick.
For more information and to register for the Smart Hustle Small Business Conference, please visit: http://www.smarthustle.com/conference/
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If you run a blog on your own business website, you know how much work goes into keeping the blog updated. At Smart Hustle, we are happy to have an excellent team who can help make that happen. In addition to our own writers, we accept contributions from readers and also have a pool of business experts who periodically share advice with the Smart Hustle audience. In this Smart Hustle Recap, we are featuring three recent articles from some of our favorite biz experts: video marketing expert Roberto Blake, productivity expert Hugh Culver, and all-around business guru Megan Totka who is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com.
10 Biz Expert Tips on Video Marketing
Video marketing is a hot topic right now, and we know that many small business owners are eager to hop aboard the trend but are not sure how to get started. In this article, marketing expert Roberto Blake shares some of his best tips. His advice will answer all of your most frequently asked questions, including what sort of video content should you create, how to tie it in with your website and blog, and how to use video to generate leads and grow your list.
Click to read 10 Simple and Effective Tips to Grow Your Business Using Video Marketing
Biz Expert Tips for Time Management
Do you ever feel like there are never enough hours in the day? That distractions are eating into your productivity, and you’re always a few steps behind where you’d like to be? In this article, productivity expert Hugh Culver argues that how you manage your time is tied to the stories you tell yourself about time. In a three-step process, he’ll walk you through admitting that you make up stories, changing those stories, and then making them stick so you can get more out of every workday.
Click to read Why You Need to Change Your Story About Time
Biz Expert Tips for Small Business Blogs
A blog can be the key to getting more business, closing more deals, and generating more leads. However, as a busy small business owner, you might wonder if it’s a good area to focus your efforts. In this article, biz expert Megan Totka shares three important ways that a blog can help your small business. Before you officially say “no” to blogging, you definitely need to read this article.
Click to read 3 Ways Your Small Business Can Benefit from a Business Blog
If you like biz expert articles like the ones you see above, stay tuned because Smart Hustle has been reaching out to more biz experts for contributions and we are going to start sharing at least one each week on SmartHustle.com! For more advice from biz experts, we also direct you to the Smart Hustle Conference. Purchase your tickets today and get ready for October 20th when experts like Joe Connolly, Peter Shankman, Gene Marks and others share their best tips for small business owners.
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The MSP world is changing fast and the latest evolution is the shift to Cloud. According to AMI’s Global Forecast Model, SMBs will spend US$96 Billion on managed services in 2016 growing to US$154 Billion by 2020. To capture this opportunity most MSPs are transitioning towards cloud and hybrid environments by offering services like Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM).
When it comes to your marketing and sales efforts, one of the most important things that you need to do is track statistics related to your progress. How else would you know when something is (or is not) working? How else could you refine your campaigns and improve your performance? One of the most helpful tools for keeping track of what is happening on your website is Google Analytics, but it can be a little confusing for the untrained business owners – there are numbers and charts everywhere, so how do you know which ones to pay attention to? In this edition of the Smart Hustle Recap, we are featuring an article that gives some important how-to information for tracking your social media campaigns. We also have advice from expert Adrian Miller on how to recover from a sales slump and an excellent argument for why you should NOT focus on ‘going viral’ in your content marketing strategy.
Using Google Analytics to Track Social Campaigns
Even though there are several social media management tools, the richness of Google Analytics reports make it ideal for tracking your social campaigns. Did you know that you can use Google Analytics to track network referrals, conversions, landing pages, and social plugins? This article tells you how to get started with Google Analytics, set up goals, and five top Google Analytics reports to look at to understand how your social media campaigns are going.
Click to read How to Track Social Media Analytics with Google Analytics
Recovering from a Sales Slump
Unfortunately, everyone will experience a sales slump at some point in his or her career. Biz expert Adrian Miller says the first important thing is to understand why the slump happened so you can address the cause! However, if you find yourself in a slump, there are plenty of things you can do to recover. Adrian reviews four of the best things you can do to get the sales ball rolling again.
Click to read How to Revamp Your Business in a “Sales Slump”
Small Biz Owner: Don’t Focus on Going Viral
The gold standard in content marketing is a phenomenon known as “going viral” – when your content (whether it is a blog post, video, social media message, or something else) gets the attention of mass audiences who flood to your site and “discover” your company, making you an overnight sensation. While going viral is definitely a good thing, there are many reasons why small business owners should not focus on going viral. This article explores the reasons and what small business owners should do instead to make sure their content is a hit among the target market.
Click to read Content Marketing 2016: Why Small Businesses Shouldn’t Focus on Going Viral
Smart Hustle Magazine is committed to helping small business owners through all the twists and turns of running a business – the high points (like going viral), the low points (like experiencing a sales slump), and all of the experimentation that goes on in between (including tracking campaign analytics on platforms like Google Analytics). For more advice – no matter what stage of the game you’re at – check out SmartHustle.com or join the discussion in the Smart Hustle Community.
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The legendary WCBS Newsradio small business reporter Joe Connolly will be one of the thought leaders sharing insights at the 11th Annual Smart Hustle Small Business Conference.
The conference takes place on October 20, 2016, is the ultimate event for entrepreneurs and small business owners.
Joe Connolly: What Does He Have To Offer You?
Each weekday morning, people tune into WCBS between 5am-10am, to listen to Joe Connolly as he distills business news in a way that everyone can understand.
He also interviews business owners to help you gain insight into how others run their business. You can learn from their mistakes and victories.
Joe has been in the news business for a long time and has amassed plenty of business information. His radio program and podcasts have covered a wide variety of helpful topics over the years. And Joe is willing to share what he has learned with anyone who is willing to listen:
- Do you want to keep your cash registers running? Learn how to operate connected business ventures that attract different types of customers at different times of the day – all within one shared space.
- Ever wondered why comedians make great salespeople? It’s because they know how to connect with the audience. And that explains why funny videos make for excellent marketing tools that encourage more positive responses. Understanding how to connect with your target audience is the first step to getting people to buy what you are selling.
- If you are stuck in a rut, it pays to combine your interests and contacts to create a new business venture that gives you greater satisfaction. Learning how to take advantage of your existing experience will come in handy when you want to make a career change.
These are just a few tips that we pulled from Joe’s recent interviews. For more of Joe’s advice on how to run a small business, you need to check out the Smart Hustle Small Business Conference.
The Smart Hustle Business Conference: What You Need To Know
The Smart Hustle Business Conference, the brainchild of the 4X entrepreneur, author, speaker, and editor of the Smart Hustle Magazine, Ramon Ray, will take place from 8.00 a.m-4.00 p.m on October 20, 2016.
The conference is sponsored by Intuit QuickBooks and takes place in midtown Manhattan. It is the ultimate event for entrepreneurs and small business owners looking to network and learn from business experts and peers.
In addition to featured speaker Joe Connolly, you will also have the chance to learn from:
- Peter Shankman – Celebrity entrepreneur, investor, and creator of HARO.
- Karen Peacock – Senior Vice President of Small Business at Intuit.
- Ramon Ray – Conference host and entrepreneur
- Sharon Melnick – Business psychologist and author
- And many others!
There will be over 400 small business owners and entrepreneurs attending the conference, and until August 20, 2016, you can take advantage of the early bird pricing of $99 per person.
For more information and to purchase tickets, check out the conference website. We hope to see you there!
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Hey small business owner, are you taking advantage of all of the free resources that are available to you? If you are like most business owners, you’d love to get extra knowledge and assistance, but you’re just not sure where you can find it. In this Smart Hustle Recap, we have an article that will point you in the direction of 23 top small business organizations that are waiting to help you! We also want to talk MONEY by addressing some common e-commerce mistakes (and how to fix them), exploring the FICO Liquid Score, and sharing recommendations for how to deal with taxes without hurting your cash flow.
Top Small Business Organizations
Help is available, small business owner! Whether you are looking to boost your knowledge with tutorials, videos, and lessons, improve your networking by connecting with other small business owners, or secure funding in the way of grants and loans, there are several organizations waiting to help you. In this article, we cover 23 of the top small business organizations that offer free and paid resources to help grow your small business.
Click to read Top 23 Entrepreneur Organizations
The Most Common E-commerce Mistakes
You’ve started an e-commerce store and are delighted at the possibility of reaching a wider market and increasing your profit potential. However, if you’re not careful, you can make crucial mistakes that eat into your profit margin and hurt your business. In this article, we look at three of the top mistakes that small business owners make when running an e-commerce store, and we share an infographic that has tons of advice on how to fix a leaky e-commerce faucet.
Click to read 3 Mistakes that Cost Your Ecommerce Store (And How to Fix them)
Do You Know What the FICO Liquid Score Is?
Understanding your credit score is important for securing the funding you need both in your business and personal life. However, financial terms are often confusing, so it can be difficult to make sense of it all. Put yourself on a better financial path by reading this article that details the difference between your personal and business credit scores and how they combine to create your FICO Liquid Credit Score, which many lenders are using today to make their funding decisions.
Click to read Why the FICO Liquid Score Should Be Something on Your Radar
Tax Tips for Small Business Owners
Taxes are an unfortunate reality that every small business owner must deal with. Should you set money aside for your tax payments, and how can you prepare for taxes without hurting your cash flow? This article covers three scenarios of when taxes and cash flow collide. You’ll learn how to plan for taxes in a way that will keep your business healthy and prepare you for tax day.
Click to read When Taxes and Cash Flow Collide
It can be easy to get lost in the passion you hold for your business ideas – to focus on your products or fun elements like marketing and social media. However, a smart small business owner should always have a good eye on the finances, and these articles are guaranteed to help. For more assistance, don’t forget to check out our list of top small business organizations, and find answers to your other questions at SmartHustle.com.
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How can small businesses with limited resources best use the data they collect on their customers?
The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.
1. Tell the Customer Story
Gather stories about the customer experience. Why do they use your product or service? What value do you bring them? Gather that feedback and create simple, effective stories centered around how you bring your customers value. You’ll often find that the story of “why” a customer uses your product or service will resonate with others. That usually results in more customers.
– JT Allen, myFootpath LLC
2. Hone in on What Your Clients Really Want
Data for any business is invaluable. We have continuously used feedback to hone in on what our clients and vendor partners want most. If you find that a client doesn’t care about a costly component of your product or service, that’s money to be used elsewhere. If you learn that a certain aspect has been well-received, that’s an opportunity to tailor your product or service even more.
– Alex Lorton, Cater2.me
3. Create a Referral Program
One effective way to use data from existing customers is to offer them incentives to refer new business. Companies like DirecTV use a simple “Give $100, Get $100” referral program for existing customers to refer new customers. This idea is powerful, as your existing customers would love to save money on future business with you, while also referring friends and family as new customers.
– Obinna Ekezie, Wakanow.com
4. Better Define Your Ideal Clients
When we understand the wants and needs of our ideal customers, we are able to develop targeted marketing campaigns that speak directly to them. Use the data you collect to better understand your ideal buying persona. How old are the people who are buying from you? What is their socioeconomic status? What are their professions? Develop campaigns around these findings.
– Nicole Munoz, Start Ranking Now
5. Focus On Effective, Efficient Growth
Use analytics and data to determine where you should invest your time. For instance, if most of your converting customers are coming from Instagram, you should focus your efforts there even further to continue to improve. In addition, don’t simply look at the current data. Look at your business and industry trends to see where to invest your time and money.
– Anshey Bhatia, Verbal+Visual
6. Turn Data Points Into Personal Connections
Small businesses need to compete with larger ones by having a personal connection with the customer. Big corporations can spend millions on analyzing big data but what they can not do is turn these data points into fans of and mavens for their company. Know who your customers are with data and then go above and beyond to befriend them and make their connection with your brand a personal one.
– Matt Wilson, Under30Experiences
7. Create Custom Audiences
The two most powerful and cost-effective forms of digital marketing are custom audiences and re-targeting. Small businesses would be best served by uploading their customer lists to Facebook and Google to create audience campaigns. An audience campaign will allow the small business to focus limited resources on getting existing customers to buy more, and re-targeting will drive conversions.
– Kristopher Jones, LSEO.com
8. Create Buying Funnels
There’s so much that can be done with data. But for companies with limited resources, the best approach is to use data to increase revenue. To do so, companies should use the data they already have to create a strong buying funnel, which can then be used to market to those customers more effectively using email marketing, retargeting and content creation.
– Marcela De Vivo, Brilliance
9. Determine How to Differentiate Yourself
A small company can fill niche needs that sometimes a big company cannot. The data they receive can provide insights into the competition not meeting those needs, so the small company can use that as the basis to develop exactly what their audience says it’s looking for. This intelligence gathered through the data can provide a significant competitive advantage.
– Cynthia Johnson, American Addiction Centers
10. Collect Customer Contact Information
A business grows by building its customer base. The best way to do this is to acquire customer contact information and keep up consistent, relevant communication. Give the customer a reason for needing their contact information, such as sending an email or a text when their appointment is ready. Add this information (with their permission) into your monthly newsletter list.
– Andy Karuza, FenSens
11. Create Micro-Targeted Campaigns
One of the best ways to use the data you collect on your customers is to use micro-targeted marketing campaigns. When you really get to know your customers, you can put them into buckets and market to them in a much more effective way. For example, when sending emails to your clients, it’s much more effective to send a customized email to all the people who live in Brooklyn and are married than to batch everyone together.
– Joe Apfelbaum, Ajax Union
12. Try CRM Marketing
The main way we use our customer data is to send them more useful and specific messages. We segment our customer base into over 30 different groups based on spend amount, what they’ve purchased, and the frequency of their purchases and location. This way we’re able to send them a more targeted email or show them more relevant banner ads.
– Fan Bi, Blank Label
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Smart Hustle regularly features entrepreneur advice so we can learn from those who walked the path before us – the missteps, the triumphs, the challenges along the way. Although you shouldn’t constantly waiver in your own journey, Smart Hustle interviewees share gems of wisdom that just might spark new and creative ideas for how to grow your own small business. In today’s Smart Hustle Recap, we’re featuring the advice of three successful entrepreneurs who can help you in various areas, including the decision to become a full-time entrepreneur, creating a niche business, and expanding by starting a franchise.
Entrepreneur Advice on Leaving Your Full-Time Job
Many entrepreneurs and budding small business owners face that point in their career when they have to make the decision to stay in the 9-5 or to leave that full-time job and pursue their business idea full time. No matter how confident you are in your ideas, this is a tough decision because it means saying goodbye to the structure and safety of a regular job with a regular paycheck. In this interview with Jessica Mah of the accounting company InDinero, Jessica gives advice for making a smoother transition into entrepreneurship. She also comments on the importance of refining your product and creating a long-term business plan.
Click to read Advice to Live by for Startup Entrepreneurs from Jessica Mah of InDinero
Entrepreneur Advice on Creating a Niche Business
If it’s been said once, it’s been said one hundred times – small businesses shouldn’t try to be everything to everyone; instead, they should find a specific niche and focus on bringing a unique product or service to a distinct market. If you are starting (or dream of starting) your own niche business, check out this entrepreneur advice from Josh Cohen of The Junkluggers, an eco-friendly junk removal company. Josh talks about the importance of niche businesses to focus on one thing, partner with the right people and enhance your customer care so you can benefit from referral marketing.
Click to read Business Growth Strategies for Niche Businesses: An Interview with Josh Cohen of Junkluggers
Entrepreneur Advice on Franchising
Other readers may be further ahead in the game. Perhaps by now you have set up a steady and successful business but are curious as to how you can take it to the next level. Have you ever considered franchising as a way to expand your brand to a wider market with the help of others like you who dream of running their own business? In this interview with Ciarra Stockeland of MODE, a discount fashion store, Ciarra shares her advice on becoming a small business franchise. She speaks about the differences between franchising and retail, the limitations of a franchise, and the importance of mentorship. Her advice is helpful for those who want to create a franchise out of their own business as well as those who want to buy into a franchise to become a business owner.
Click to read Entrepreneur Ciarra Stockeland on the Challenges and Nuances of Starting a Franchise Business
The articles above will provide you with excellent entrepreneur advice, and if you’re looking for even more, I want to remind you about the Smart Hustle Small Business Conference that takes place October 20th in Midtown NYC. The conference will feature speakers including Joe Connelly, Peter Shankman, Ramon Ray, Gene Marks and other entrepreneurs who are going to share their best advice with conference attendees. Tickets are on sale but are selling fast! You can learn more about the conference and get your tickets here.
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What’s the best tool for soliciting feedback about your product, service or website, and why does it work well?
The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.
1. Asking and Listening
Ask customers, members of your team and trusted people around you. It doesn’t matter the platform, be it a survey, email or in-person conversation. What matters is that you really listen to what they have to say with an open mind, impartially and without getting defensive. It can be tough sometimes, but it’s always worth it.
– Ophir Tanz, GumGum
Customers usually dislike surveys and feedback forms, as they are long, repetitive and boring. Wyzerr‘s “smart” forms adapt as the user answers the questions, using gamification to entice responses. The result is more consumer responses and fully completed surveys.
– Beck Bamberger, BAM Communications
3. Analyzing Behavior Patterns
Nothing speaks better than actual user data, that is why we spend a lot of time analyzing patterns of behavior within our products. Also, A/B tests will give you a much more relevant and applicable answer — we utilize them a lot. We found out that customers were never interested in features users supposedly like in surveys once we implemented them in our app.
– Ivan Tsybaev, Trucker Path, Inc
Email is still one of the best tools for soliciting feedback. With a bit of digging, you can reach just about anyone. If you’re already collecting customer data, you should have access to numerous people who can provide you with valuable feedback with regards to your product, service or website. Your email list is also an invaluable resource for conducting surveys.
– Ismael Wrixen, FE International
5. Doing Monthly Calls
We keep in monthly contact with every single client. This helps build our relationship with each client. In turn, they feel more comfortable giving us honest feedback about the work we are performing. Because of these calls, our clients feel comfortable calling or emailing us anytime there is an issue. It also helps to eliminate problems in the early stages.
– Phil Laboon, Eyeflow Internet Marketing
6. Shopper Approved
For my website, I use Shopper Approved. Shopper Approved is easy to set up, provides feedback from only individuals who have purchased your product, and allows you to display your rating on PPC ads and organic SERPS, as well as on your website. I personally read every review, and the real-time feedback helps us spot trends and potential issues with our site.
– Patrick Barnhill, Specialist ID, Inc.
7. Using Third Party Companies
Hiring a third party company to conduct customer interviews, surveys, etc. is the best way to elicit unbiased, honest and useful information from actual buyers or potential buyers. This works well because you have eliminated any factors that might influence someone’s opinion. They can speak freely and unabashedly.
– Andrew Kucheriavy, Intechnic
UserTesting.com gives you unedited videos of people using your site and talking about their experience. These are people from your target demographic, trying to accomplish tasks you set out for them. As soon as you watch three or four, you’ll notice patterns in use, which will inform you on how to improve your product design.
– Aaron Schwartz, Modify
The InVision app makes it easier than ever to prototype and test new web or app designs. This tool allows you to invite team members or even customers to collaborate by providing notes and feedback right on top of the design mockup. It’s easy to use because the mockups are accessible online from anywhere, by anyone you invite, and the UI is quite intuitive.
– Andy Karuza, FenSens
SurveyMonkey works well because it’s easy to implement and has multiple features that allows you to gather all of the feedback and data you could ever need. You can completely brand the surveys and deploy them via email or social media, in addition to housing them on your website. Several third party integrations are also available. For example, we have used the platform together with Mailchimp.
– Jonathan Long, Market Domination Media
Qualaroo is a great tool that lets you set up a question or set of questions that pop up for users on your website. It’s easy to set up and runs automatically, which can give you more results than an email survey or reaching out to users individually. Best of all, the tool comes pre-populated with many questions you can ask your users, such as Net Promoter Score or Signup Hesitation.
– Mattan Griffel, One Month
What users say and what they do are two totally separate things. It is great to hear the thoughts of your users, but to get the whole picture you need to see how they use your product. There’s no better way to do this than to drill down into individual actions and users (far beyond what Google Analytics provides), and this is where the event-based analytics of MixPanel shine through.
– James Simpson, GoldFire Studios
13. Using Post-Project Client Surveys
A short survey at the end of the project works great. Keep it to a few questions that are critical to learning how to improve, why you were chosen, what went wrong/right, and perhaps ask for a testimonial. Disgruntled clients give the best feedback on how to improve. Happy clients give excellent testimonials.
– Peter Boyd, PaperStreet Web Design
It’s a pretty awesome tool because not only does it cost less than most usability testing services out there, it gives you the same services. You get a video of the user’s screen as he or she uses your website. You also get written answers to a questionnaire. If you have your own users, TryMyUI will actually curate and send your questionnaire out to your own users at their email address.
– Cody McLain, SupportNinja
We’ve been using Desk support for our support for the past year and find it one of the easiest ways for our customers to solicit feedback, questions and suggest features out there. It’s easy to use, quick to install and works like a champ. We couldn’t live without it and our customers feel the same.
– John Rampton, Due
The post The 15 Best Tools for Collecting Customer Feedback appeared first on SmallBizTechnology.
It’s a fact: not all leads are created equal. You might be tracking them all in your customer relationship management (CRM) software, but you absolutely should be treating them differently.
Determining which are your best leads — in other words, those most likely to turn into customers — can help you increase your conversion rate and boost sales. Also, putting more focus on your most likely prospects in your pipeline will save you time (because you won’t be chasing dead-end leads). But how can you figure out which are the best leads?
First, Categorize Leads
Did you realize that 73% of new B2B leads aren’t ready to make a purchase? That doesn’t mean they’re not worth pursuing, but you will want to handle them differently than you would a lead who’s ready to buy.
Create “buckets” for your contacts. These buckets might include:
- People you’ve met in person
- People who downloaded an ebook
- Social media contacts
You could also categorize them by how they ended up in your lead funnel, such as “downloaded our 10 Reasons to Invest in Financial Software ebook,” which you’ve targeted at a particular audience.
Next, Score Those Leads
This part is fun, and a bit like a game. You can assign points to each lead to give it a score. The higher the score, the better the lead. You can give points for things like:
- Job title
- Interactions with your brand (downloaded whitepaper, attended webinar)
Also take away points for any negative actions that a lead takes, like unsubscribing from your email list.
Decide on Nurturing Techniques
Even if a lead ranks high on your scoring matrix, she might not be ready to buy from you right now, so it’s imperative that you invest the time and energy in nurturing her appropriately. If you can further break down your bucket of high-scoring leads into where they are on the buyer’s journey, you can give what each lead needs at the particular stage she’s in.
For example, if a lead is in the Consideration stage, she’s past needing to be informed about your general category of product. Now she’s comparing you to the competition. Make it easy for her. This is the ideal time to send her a free graphic that puts you (in a favorable light without being promotional) against the other top players in your space. Remember: you want to communicate that you’re trying to help her on her buying journey, not push her into a decision, so focus on being informative, not salesy.
Leverage that CRM
Your CRM platform can be hugely helpful in nurturing your best leads…but only if you maximize your use of it. Take copious notes about your leads’ activities, and tag each contact with that lead scoring information. You can even more a contact from one category or stage of the buying cycle to the next so you can easily view everyone who’s at the same stage.
These days, we have so much data at our fingertips, that chasing bad leads is nearly obsolete. Instead, put your efforts toward ensuring that those ideal leads grow to love and trust you, and eventually become customers.
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