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QUIZ: How Hot is that Hot Lead?

SCENARIO: A sales lead from your website pops up on your to-do list. The prospect just got off your site after spending 5 minutes there, examining various products, checking prices, etc. However, you're tied up writing a proposal under deadline -- with your boss breathing down your neck -- but you're almost done. You decide to finish up the proposal and call the lead in half-an-hour.


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The correct answer is MAJOR. No, BEYOND MAJOR. In fact, according to a scientific study of response rates on Internet visits, you are 100 times less likely to reach that prospect if you wait 30 minutes than if you call within five minutes.

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Now let's suppose that, despite all odds, you DID manage get through that prospect, even though you waited 30 minutes. Your job is now to convert that lead into a prospect and get it into the pipeline.

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Once again, the correct answer is BEYOND MAJOR. That same study showed that if you wait 30 minutes, you are, on average, 21 times less likely to convert that lead into a real prospect.

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Not surprisingly, because you didn't call quickly enough, you didn't get through to the lead. However, since you're a go-getter, you decide to keep calling, in the hopes of "reactivating" the sales opportunity. You call five times over the next month, and leave a couple of phone messages.

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The correct answer is UNLIKELY. Or, more precisely, ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE.

The study showed that over a span of 20 days, repeated attempts to contact a lead actually had a negative impact on trying to convert that lead. Such behavior actively drove the prospect away from the company, making them LESS likely to ever become a customer.

So here's the scoop. If you wait 30 minutes to call a lead generated from your website, you are 2,100 times less likely to contact that lead and convert it into a prospect, than if you call within 5 minutes.

In other words, don't bother. After 30 minutes, that lead is useless, and any attempt to sell to that lead is flogging a dead mackerel.

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