Speed to Lead is the #1 metric you're not measuring

by Edward Oser in September 28th, 2020

When you’re at a store (remember those?) and you ask a salesperson a question, what’s your preference: 

  1. Do you want them to stand there silently until you go away, and then call you with an answer an hour after you’ve left the store? 
  2. ..Or do you want the salesperson to answer you immediately? 

All people prefer option 2.

Almost all companies provide option 1.

Speed-to-Lead is the single most important KPI that you're ignoring. 

When a lead comes inbound to your company, how many minutes, hours or days does that person have to wait before you get back to them? Again and again Research shows that Speed-to-Lead is hugely important. 

The good people at Vendasta have written extensively about Speed-to-Lead. Not to be outdone, MIT research published in the Harvard Business Review, has concluded the same. 

The sad reality is that despite spending billions--with a B--every day on software, staff, events, marketing, the whole shebang--despite everything that companies do to make sales: companies are being rude to their leads. 

It goes back to kindergarten. When someone asks you a question, it's rude to not answer them. When someone reaches out, it's polite to respond immediately. 

Being polite to your leads--treating them as you would like to be treated--it's not just the right thing to do. It also closes deals. 

Let's check out some numbers: 

The Vendasta study found that:

  • 78% of customers buy from the first responder
  • Connecting with your lead in the first minute increases conversion by 391%

MIT studied 15,000 leads over 3 years and found that: 

  • Responding within 5 mins increases conversion by 400% compared to 10 mins. 

Let's dig into that for a second.

They're finding that even waiting 5 additional minutes to connect with an inbound lead cuts your chances of closing a deal by 400%.

That's insane. 

Vendasta's work also notes that despite the data clearly aligning with common sense--when someone reaches out, answer them immediately--almost no one is doing it.

Vendasta found that 55% of companies took 5 or mote days to respond to leads. That means that for more than half of companies, leads are sitting around for a week before someone deigns to call them. 

So the good news is this:

There is huge competitive advantage in reaching out immediately to your leads.

No one does it, and it closes deals. 

OK - I get it, this is a real thing. So how do I connect immediately with my lead?

Ah, the million-dollar question.

How to actually pull this off? Your reps are busy. There's process. It's hard, man!

Here's the one big secret: Text them. Don't try and call. Don't send an email. Text them.

Text the lead immediately--as soon as they come inbound.

As soon as they fill in a form, send them a text.

If you try and do it with phone calls, it won't work. A lot of the reason it takes your rep an hour to call the lead is because they actually are doing other things. 

An email will just go onto the lead's mountain of emails. 

But a text... here's where it gets interesting. You can automate personal, real-sounding texts. The texts can say things like: 

"Hi Bill. This is Julie, at Acme Dynamite. Thanks for reaching out. I'm with a customer right now, can I call you in 15 minutes?"

or

"Hi Bill. This is Julie, at Acme Dynamite. Thanks for reaching out. Is there a good time to talk? Here's my calendar: bit.ly/calendar"

or

"Hi Bill. This is Julie, at Acme Dynamite. Thanks for reaching out. I'd like to get you to the right person, so (QUALIFYING QUESTION)"

Luckily, we can help you with zero-second response. Sadly, we're the only ones who can, so you're stuck with us. 

People prefer texts. A Text is polite. It doesn't monopolize their time. It's not just another throwaway email. A text cuts through the noise. 

90% of texts are read within the first 3 minutes. 

But to do this at scale, the text has to seem real. It has to be polite. It has to be two way. And you have to be able to log the conversation in your CRM. 

We can help you do that. 

Bitesize users get a whopping 65% response rate--on average--to texts automatically sent out as soon as the lead comes inbound. It blows phone and email out of the water. 

Speed to lead can move from your Achilles Heel to Competitive Advantage in less than one day. 

The good news is that your competitors are probably screwing up speed to lead. The bad news is, someone is still connecting with the lead first. 

If you can be the first to the lead, to talk with the customer while they're shopping, you can beat your competitors to the business. 

What do I do now?

We can show you how. Come inbound to us. Let's text about it. 

Get started with Bitesize today!

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