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Lead Generation Services Comparison: Football, Mustangs and Sales

Posted by Carole Mahoney on 2/8/12 11:34 AM

What Are Most Lead Generation Services Missing?

Are you trying to close more sales from online lead generation?

It sounds so easy right? Someone who comes to you should be much easier to close then someone you had to get in front of. For the DIY entreprenuer, marketing or sales person it would seem like a no-brainer.

So then why:

  • are so many struggling to get their expected ROI from internet marketing, or even inbound marketing?

  • are the marketing machines not winning the race to the bottom line?

  • are the sales that do close churning before they can actually become profitable?

  • is it not enough generate to high quality, high velocity leads?

We have:

  • the tools
  • the stats
  • the we-know-we-need-to-do-it reasons
  • the younger tech savvy can write copy and code in their sleep.

So what is stopping the lead generation engine you have hired or created from reaching the goals you have carefully planned out with spreadsheets and charts? 

You might feel like my favorite football coach, and my still favorite sports team. No one wants to share their shortcomings, and that is understandable. 

"My conversation with the team is between me and the team," New England coach Bill Belichick.

But let's compare apples to apples. The Pats watch hours of tape, memorize dozens of plays, and practices each one hundreds of times. Their coach is a one of the smartest strategists in league history. They are a machine. And they still lost. Twice. To the same team. The same coach and same quarterback who spent 5 of the last 10 years at the superbowl lost. Read any of the interviews post mortem, the one underlining current is that it comes down to the people who execute the plays.

What would your sales people be any less important of a factor?

Marketing is the lead generation machine, but sales is the driver.

Why are some lead generation services not reaching the finish line? Why are your own online lead generation stalling out?

You can tear apart 'the marketing machine', but it might just be that you have an inexperienced driver who can't drive stick. Maybe your marketing machine is not that shiny, new and fast, but if you have a better driver- you can still win. (so long as the car starts!)

So where should you focus first? Building the marketing machine for a sales person to drive, or make sure they know how to drive first? 

Building the car is the easy part, learning to drive it is the hard part.

You might be asking yourself, what does a girl know about football or cars? I'll give you some quick background. First of, the first football game I remember clearly was the Pats vs Bears in the 80s. I cried on the way home. I've watched a lot of football since then.

Second, I grew up spending weekends in grandfather's garage. I watched my uncle, his son, rebuild from scratch, with painstaking detail, a 1969 cherry red convertible Mustang. He never drove it. He would never let me drive it when I was old enough. I begged him to let me buy it. "Never." he said. It sat and rotted until he passed away.

When I had asked him why he never drove it, or why he wouldn't sell it, or give it to me, he said he would rather see it sit and rot then get wrapped around a tree. I don't remember what the engine was, but he built it for drag racing. As you might guess, I have a lead foot, and likely would have done exactly what he was afraid I would do.

Sales people can do that to the best inbound marketing program or lead generation services. It's not about the machine, it is about the driver.

Now had I been able to provide my uncle with a 30+ page detailed report that listed 4 crucial areas necessary for me to not wrap myself around a tree, given him an unbiased assessment of my driving skills and how I would handle myself in real life driving situations (like rain, snow, sleet, ice). If I had a driving coach that taught me how to handle the sharp turns, test my speed and the reaction time I needed to not end up in a tree; then maybe.

Of course that is impossible to do that for a race car driver. But not for a sales person or function. A sales assessment test is exactly that. It enables you to assessment your current business drivers and act as the guide to train them to be the best driver they can be. 

Don't you want to be sure you are safe handing over the keys to the Mustang?

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Topics: sales and marketing strategy, lead generation, sales and marketing integration, conversion optimization