Email vs phone leads, do you treat them the same?
Paul Hunt is a marketing consultant
I’m sure you feel that the answer to this question is of course, yes, but I’d like to challenge that perception and get you thinking about what this means for your business.
I have seen first-hand in a 1,000 strong branch network how difficult it is to manage and respond quickly to leads in a uniform way. Also, from a marketer’s perspective, on many occasions the issue is not about creating the leads, it’s how the business converts them and this is usually as simple as responding to leads quickly – which often means before your competition.
Human nature dictates that when a phone rings that takes precedent over everything else (unfortunately, I have sometimes seen that it’s even been more important than greeting a customer in the branch)..
However, I don’t feel the same can be said with email leads and I have even heard some staff say that they aren’t as important or as good as phone leads, so they often are dealt with haphazardly, maybe at the end of the day. It’s no surprise that the conversion of these leads is poor, as by that time someone else has probably responded and so a new customer is lost.
It can be very difficult to control and manage a disparate branch network and even in centralised call centres, the management of email traffic & leads may not be as slick as inbound calls.
There are systems out there than can help create email leads into inbound telephone calls, so meaning that you don’t need to set up new processes to deal with emails, you just plug in the system to your existing call handling framework.
My challenge to you all is that before you start thinking about increasing leads, focus on how you can convert more of the existing ones first and treat emails as importantly as the phone, you’ll be surprised how valuable this could be.