Growing Your Digital Agency

Lead Response Time

Grow Your Digital Agency: Improve Lead Response Time
January 17, 2017 Joe Vernon

There is a psychological discomfort associated with self-denial. If we want something, we want it now. Think about for a minute. Imagine that you are watching an episode of Star Trek and you see a little boy that looks like Kurt Russell and you want to know, is that him? You pull out your phone and ask Google then you get an answer. Or you want to watch a new movie so you put on Netflix, Hulu, or one of the other streaming services.

Instant gratification has become a norm that people expect. The B2C industry seems to be fully aware of this. When a buyer is in the buying mood, they act now or provide a way for the buyer to act now. How come the B2B industry hasn’t adopted this? With the urgency to generate leads and more leads, why are they not urgent to respond or start a conversation with their audience?

Now ask yourself, is your agency quick to respond to your leads?

Slow lead response time, a B2B epidemic

An audit of 2,241 U.S. companies by HBR found that 24% of the companies took more than 24 hours to respond to a lead, and 23% didn’t respond at all. The average response time, among the companies that did respond within 30 days, was 42 hours.

That isn’t very instant, and far from gratifying. Their article goes on to state that, “…U.S. Firms that tried to contact potential customers within an hour of receiving a query were nearly seven times as likely to qualify the lead…”.

This highlights that businesses are failing to make lead response time a priority, but also that there is an opportunity for sales to engage the leads sooner to increase the success rate.

Lead response time, something to measure.

Again, if you didn’t do this already, as yourself or your sales team, are you quick to respond to leads? You are hoping they say yes, and maybe they do. Then ask them, what is the average time it takes you to respond to a lead?

If you are in sales or operate a business, you’ve probably heard of this before:

“You can not improve what you can not measure”.

Your agency is already measuring marketing KPIs, sale lead response time can be measured and should be measure. If your sales team doesn’t know it, perhaps it is time for a secret shopping experiment where you test for yourself. Or perhaps time to put a system in place to measure it.

The opportunity

Your agency is wanting to grow, making changes within your agency to commit to your sales reps to develop a quick comprehensive lead follow-up strategy and implement it is a smart idea.

If the average response time of your competitors is 42 hours, and first response time is 2, 3, or maybe even 4 hours, you’re already winning. And if you follow up that first call with 1-2 more, you’re a champion.

Be sure to check out other articles from our “Growing Your Digital Agency” series.