How To Exhaust Sales Leads

One of the most confusing and exasperating activities of being a new sales person is how to organize with new sales leads. You might have tried creating piles by customer type, customer location, targeted product or even time of year. If you are pulling your hair out and are surrounded by shredded bits of paper, try organizing for sales lead exhaustion.

Get it into your thinking that you must consciously attend to these leads that will help you make money in your sales job. Organizing the leads before you start pursuing them and keeping them organized after you have exhausted them is critical to knowing what stage you are at and what should happen next.

Rule: You must touch a lead 6 times

1. Call the lead in the morning. (9:00am to 12:00 pm noon)
2. Call the lead in the afternoon. (1:00pm to 5:00pm)
3. Call the lead in the evening. (5:00pm to 7:00pm)
4. Call the lead on the weekend (9:00am to 7:00pm Saturday and Sunday)
5. Go out and door knock the lead.
6. Mail out the “I Miss You!” card to the lead.

A top sales person will touch/process a sales lead a minimum of six times before the lead becomes exhausted. You make 1 telephone call in the morning, on another day call in the afternoon and another day call in the evening. Do you think your sales job comes to a complete halt at 5:00pm because that is when your boss locks up for the night? Stop complaining, drink an energy drink and splash some water on your face. The second shift starts at 5pm and runs through 7pm so be geared up and on the phone when your customers are able to focus on you in the evening.

Now you get to try one of the top selling strategies million dollar sales people use. They sell on Saturdays and Sundays. If you sell B2B, you should know that small business owners live, eat and breathe their business 80+ hours per week. Even if the sign on the front door shows closed, knock on the door anyway (loudly) and wait 5 minutes to see if anyone opens up. You can always slide your sales brochures and personal note to the night watchman/guard to put on someone’s desk. If you sell B2C, driving out to someone’s home in hopes of catching them there is your goal. You might get lucky and find them watering the roses, watching a movie or reading a novel, but you have to make the attempt and try to set up a weekday appointment or make a sale.

Call Your Leads

You are going to need 12 red, 12 yellow, 12 orange and12 pink pocket files and a black permanent marker. If you sell by location, label a red pocket file, IE, “Memphis – 38002 New Lead-Call Morning” as the title. On a yellow file, make a label that reads “Memphis – 38002 New Lead-Call Afternoon.” On an orange file, “Memphis – 38002 New Lead-Call Evening.” On a pink file, “Memphis – 38002 New Lead-Call Weekend.” See the pattern? Make sure you keep your city or zip code sets in order behind each other.

Go Out And Door Knock

If your sales calls at these times are not producing, move on to the good, old-fashioned door knock method #5. Make a plain, manila pocket file and label it “Memphis – 38002 New Lead-Door Knock.” Be sure to have all your notations on each lead current and up to date. There should be a line note on the date and time of each morning, afternoon, evening and weekend call made to the lead written on the paper. Now, some sales people will label them out as morning or afternoon door knocks so decide if you need that detail. Other than that, make the attempt to visit the prospect face to face.

Mail Out The “I Miss You!” Card

At your local discount general merchandise store, search through the packs of the greeting cards until you find the ones that are blank on the inside. They are probably about a dollar for 12 so get 60. Be sure to get the ones with colored envelopes so they stick out like a sore thumb in the mail. People open up colored envelopes first and if it looks like an invitation that inspires curiosity.

Your handwritten message must be about saving them money, saving them time or making them smarter. It must inspire them to urgently get in touch with you. You have to hand write the address on the envelope. Do not stick on a preprinted label.


I have been trying to reach you. The new Widget 2000 is going to save you hundreds of dollars each year and I have it for you! Call me ASAP so I can put this into your hands and you can cut production costs!

Your Sales Person
Phone Number To Call Anytime”

The Exhausted Lead

Don’t throw that lead away! Make yourself a storage box with hanging files by city or zip code. Put an “Exhausted-Month-Year” tag on the hanging file. Optionally, you can put a “Revive-Month-Year” tag on the folder and make a note on your mail calendar to take another look at them.

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