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Make Every Enquiry your Influencer Machine as Every Lead will Translate to a New Lead Every enquiry may not convert to a lead, it can definitely convert into an influencer ratio or a goodwill ratio.

By Reshma Budhia

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One of the biggest reasons you as an entrepreneur are losing your sleep is over sales conversions. A lot of your time is spent in measuring, monitoring and tracking your leads-to-sale journey. This journey is filled with statistics reflecting conversion ratios, cost per conversions, click through rates, bounce rates, and more.

But you are missing something very important! Take a step back. Have you looked at the percentage of enquiries that did not convert into a lead? Did you know that you could associate a measurement scale to them? Maybe an "influencer score" or a "goodwill score"?

Yes, while every enquiry may not convert to a lead, it can definitely convert into an influencer ratio or a goodwill ratio. You can get the prospect to smile and remember you from the first touch point, and if you manage to do that you can score yourself a "1'!

Prospects always give us the perception that they are in control of their requirements. However research shows that most of them are usually stressed and overwhelmed when making enquiries. Did your response to them try and answer their concernsand leave them with a smile, even if they do not convert?

Most enquiries are happening in the virtual world. This would mean that a lot of the communication we do is screen-to-screen and not face-to-face. Emoticons are representing our reactions and gifs are reflecting our mood. So what mood does your response email reflect – Salesy? Complicated? Desperate? Higher than thou? Or plain vanilla boring?

The solution? Change the theme of your response

With Gratitude

In my experience as a Marketer, the one mood that can have a lasting impression is that of Gratitude. In the real world, gratitude is a universally acknowledged emotion – deal or no deal! In the virtual world, gratitude is the theme that will make every enquiry a referral and every prospect a well-wisher. You can choose to show gratitude for the person enquiring or for your team and your stakeholders – no bars there!Including statements like "Thank you for taking the time out and enquiring with us" or "Thanks to our dedicated Account Managers you can be assured of commitment…" or even something like "It is with immense gratitude that we can claim on being the #1 service provider" will go a long way in establishing your reputation and your humility.

With Empathy

Its' never just the commercials that will get you that deal. You will find zillions of examples on how deals were cracked purely on the basis of relationship management. This relationship needs to start building with the first email you send out. No deal is a small deal; you just need to look at it from the prospect's point of view. Maybe a quick research on the prospect indicated that he is small for what you offer. How did you respond? Did you even respond? Build in empathy for the person enquiring. Give them the dignity of a full response. Adding a personalized response like "In our experience organization of your size tend to opt for Grade 1 product, however considering the growth factor in your industry, you will have to upgrade quicker than later. So, we suggest you chose the following…"will tell the prospect that you care.

Your sincerity and your empathy will shine out from the black & white email – trust that!

With Passion

If what you do is something you are passionate about then it will reflect in every interaction you have. Passion is the catalyst that can translate into authenticity and high recall. You may have received an enquiry that is a dead end from business point of view, but do not let that deter you from exposing your passion on the subject or the service/product. Share links to interesting articles that you may have authored or give details on a project that you are piloting and are proud of. Do not shy away for sharing knowledge. It will be a reflection to the drive and ambition that makes your business. The magic is sure to occur!

I have been fortunate to have actually seen this strategy work at TOSS the COIN. One of our enquiries was for "feet on street" service that we do not offer. However instead of a negative response, we researched on a few vendors who offer this and shared it with the prospect. They appreciated this gesture and within a quarter they referred us and we earned a long-term client. This was a result of the goodwill score that we earned. Just by changing the theme of the response we translatedthe prospect from a short-term lead machine to a long-term influencer machine!

Reshma Budhia

Managing Partner at TOSS the COIN

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