It’s Tuesday morning. You’re in the heart of the B2B Sales pit. No, you ARE the heart of the B2B Sales pit. You’re half a cup of coffee in and reviewing your pipeline when a HOT lead comes in from Marketing. Marketing assures you that this lead is qualified. They are excited. Practically bouncing on their toes excited. So excited in fact that after emailing you the information they are standing at your desk checking to see if you got their email. They also sent you a message on Slack. “Did you see that Lead?” They are now waiting for you to call the lead. Literally standing there waiting for you to call the lead.


Where does Marketing get all this energy?


Budget? Yes.

Need? Yes.

Timeframe? Immediate. This lead just came from the website, so the prospect must be sitting at their deck right now looking at your website. They probably have their signing pen out waiting for you to call. It’s time for you, the Sales Ace, to swoop in, own it, close it, and ride the wave to glory.


You call the prospect. No answer. You leave a professional message, remembering to slow down when you leave your call back number so they can write it down the first time without having to replay your message.


You follow up with an email to re-introduce yourself and reference the voicemail you just left.


Then you wait.


Then, after a while, you wait some more.


As you continue to wait, doubt starts to creep in. If you had a pencil, you would tap it on the desk. You drift. Does anyone still use pencils? Is the lead in a pencil the same kind of lead that gets toys from China banned in the United States? What makes Number 2 pencils so great? Is there a pencil association?


You glance sideways at Marketing. It’s still early, but you wonder if this might be another one of those HOT leads that completely ghosts. Heavy sigh.


There are about 10 ways this could go bad:

  1. They immediately ghost.
  2. You reach them once and have a great conversation, then they ghost.
  3. You have 3 great conversations and then they ghost.
  4. They determine that they don’t really have budget right now and ghost.


You stop counting and remind yourself that you didn’t become a Sales Ace by getting owned by doubt and frustration. You glance back over at Marketing. This time you give ‘em The Shrug and The Nod. The signal that means initial contact failed.


Marketing acknowledges. You are in lock step with one another. It’s time to initiate Plan B, also known as Plan IAFYDS-TTA (If at first you don’t succeed).


The Lead gets added to a workflow that goes something like this:


  • The lead is added immediately to an ad retargeting group. Over the course of the next 90 days your brand messaging will be in front of the Lead across dozens of relevant websites including LinkedIn and Facebook.
  • Four follow up sales calls scheduled over the course of 10 days.
  • Four follow up sales email scheduled interspersed with the phone calls over the same 10 days.
  • A near-term 90-day email nurture campaign launches. It’s a series of 6 content rich emails that are highly relevant to the Lead.
  • A lead scoring system is in place to track engagement – email opens and clicks, web site visits.
  • At 90 days the lead drops into a long-term nurture campaign including marketing emails and display retargeting.


Every step in the communication process is personalized, relevant and on brand.


The HOT lead wasn’t really ready. But when they are, your persistence will get you an opportunity. It works. You know it. You glance at Marketing. Marketing knows it. Virtual high five.


On to the next Lead.


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