In demand generation, there are nuggets of gold to be found in those "cobwebby" leads. The challenge though is to figure out a way to re-invigorate them.
If you met someone at a tradeshow, got their card, put their info into your CRM - and then bupkus.....how do you re-engage?
- Verify if their contact information is still correct. (I know, simple - but something totally overlooked by most folks.)
- Remind them how they met you the first time. (a la the BIG tradeshow)
- Determine if they had a specific interest at the time of the initial meeting. (were they interested in records management, digital asset management)
- Dangle something new to them about their interest - even if it is not new to the org. Most companies have a ton of white papers and product sheets that have not been shared with prospects.
- Offer a chance for participation - a community board, a client only site, voting on some poll - something that will get them engaged. Wouldn't you want to offer your opinion if asked?
- Personalized follow-up regardless of participation - again, if someone asked your opinion (regardless if you gave it), if someone called you about, would you not take that phone call?
- One to two months later, re-engage the lead for lead purposes. Since you've already established contact for no other purpose than to "check-in" - folks won't feel they are being "sold".
If you lose sight of your leads in the back of the basement (like my cleaning efforts), perhaps you need a better system to track them. Depending on your comfort level, you need a decent CRM (a la salesforce.com), perhaps a marketing automation system (like Eloqoua.com), an analytics system (like Webtrends or Google), and some business development folks who are willing to make calls that won't necessarily end up in a sale every single time.
The KISS Question is: "What is your mix of follow-up for dormant leads?"