Are you a business-to-business (B2B) company that engages in a mix of inbound and outbound lead generation activities to fill your sales pipeline? From an inbound perspective, you may be creating enticing offers, blogging, and giving a boost to everything you create with search engine optimization (SEO). The metrics you’re using to track your success such as the number of visitors, conversion rates, the number of leads that become marketing qualified leads (MLQ), and how many of those leads become sales accepted leads (SAL) is probably ingrained in your processes. But, what about your outbound lead generation prospecting activities and processes?
The Stumbling Blocks of Outbound Lead Generation
You’re probably only too aware of the complexities associated with outbound lead generation. For instance, most B2B companies are plagued by poor quality lead generation databases, not having the people (or the right people) to measure and document lead generation success, and the rising advertising costs. When we add the ongoing effects of Covid-19, the situation becomes even bleaker – companies have slashed budgets and many employees are still working remotely.
At a high level, you need to know what metrics should be tracked to determine if your activities are successful. Here are the top three questions you should answer:
- How many sales activities (calls, conversions, appointments, opportunities) does the sales team need to engage in to meet their annual pipeline goals?
- What is the breakdown of each activity on a daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly basis to reach these goals?
- Do we have enough people on the team to reach our goals?
Of course, you know your revenue goals, but do you know how many sales you need to close each month to achieve the goal? And, are you confident in the amount of time your reps need for each outbound activity? If you’re like most businesses, the answers are no.
Let’s face it, most sales reps don’t enjoy a call quota. The sheer number of calls that they are asked to make can be intimidating, not to mention it takes them away from what they love to do. However, the number of calls made and the outcomes need to be tracked. Simply put, you need clarity around your outbound lead generation initiatives.
Achieve Your Outbound Sales Lead Generation Goals
To help you set your sales activity pipeline goals, here are 4 easy to implement steps that will take your outbound lead generation to the next level.
- Start with the basics: With your goal in mind, how much new business revenue do you need to generate in the coming months? Here is where you need to set your goal.
- Know the history of your conversion rates: In other words, if you have a conversion rate of 25%, you need to have 4 leads in your pipeline for each one that will close in order to meet your numbers. Repeat this process for each stage of your pipeline (calls, conversions, appointments, opportunities). If you don’t know your historical conversion rates, give each of the stages described the best estimate, and then be ready to change it as your figures become more concrete.
- Use your average deal size: With this information, you’re ready to start calculating your goals. Let’s assume that your annual revenue goal is $10 million. Using a 25% win rate, you’ll need a pipeline of $40 million. Divide this figure by your average deal size and you’ll arrive at the total number of opportunities you’ll need to close on an annual basis – 800 in this scenario. What does this mean for the number of calls, conversions, appointments, opportunities, and wins?
- Calls: 204,800
- Conversions: 51,200
- Appointments: 12,800
- Opportunities: 3,200
- Closed/won: 800
- Go further: Many times companies will end the process at step three. However, you should take it to the next level. Use your average deal size (ADS) and conversion rates to break down your funnel to quarterly, monthly, and weekly goal numbers. This will help you determine if you need to hire additional sales reps or expand the list of activities to include activities such as demos.
Setting outbound lead generation goals is just the first step. You’ll want to periodically review each of the averages, and your conversion rates to see if they are accurate or need to be revised to reflect reality. When properly done, you’ll have a clear picture of what it will take for you to achieve your revenue goal, and will have a solid understanding of whether or not you’ll be able to reach them.
Now that you understand how to set outbound lead generation goals, learn how you can set your INBOUND Goals in 2021.
Have questions? Contact our team, today!
Flickr Photo credit to stevenharris