We’ve all had to sit in on some crisis meeting about sales not being as fast as before, support tickets taking longer to close, and marketing campaigns not fattening your sales pipeline lickety-split. Every business has tried to solve these issues in an enduring quest to reduce ‘turnaround time’.
the time it takes someone to receive, deal with, and return something.
Source : Merriam Webster Dictionary
“Turnaround.” Merriam-Webster.com. Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2016.
Though fast transaction times are certainly nothing to scoff at, it’s unfortunate that turnaround time has become one of the premier ways to measure success. This metric made sense during the industrial age. People weren’t required to pay individual attention to their work items when they worked using conveyor belts. Working for the tech companies of today requires a measured and thoughtful approach.
Closing a ticket in under a minute might be considered excellent work by a customer support agent, but “How may I help you, customer number 130894” is never going to elicit the same response as a considered, well-researched message. Giving an impersonal, generic sales pitch to thousands of leads or sending a ton of unresearched emails across multiple marketing campaigns will never sustain your business’s conversion rate.
Here’s how slowing down helps your sales, customer support, and marketing teams:
Sales – More time is more money
Slowing down your sales reps gives them time to focus on the long-term viability of a customer, and removes the pressure to resort to temporary, high-volume conversion techniques that offer nothing substantial for your leads.
Finding qualified leads, building a rapport, and shaping a relationship is not as hard as it sounds for an agent who can take their time.
Find qualified leads:
The fast-talking, hustling salesperson has fallen by the wayside as people crave authenticity. Instead of trying to win over leads with charming elevator pitches, your sales reps can spend their time learning about the prospects’ needs, budget, and usage. The time and effort put into research will help increase the volume of qualified leads, and while helping you identify top prospects.
Build a rapport
Once you have a sizeable group of qualified leads, the next step is to build a strong rapport. Asking pertinent questions to discover the prospect’s business needs will make you stand out from the dozens of other pitches being send to them. If your approach stands out, social media will ensure that word about your product will spread quickly.
Shape the relationship
A measured, patient approach to your prospects will improve the loyalty of your customer base, whereas high-pressure, hard-selling sales tactics offer nothing more to you than a quick buck. Ease up on sales pressure to increase credibility and build a productive relationship with prospects.
Customer service – Winning hearts by slow service
For customers, time spent in the service queue isn’t a big deal compared to finding a quality solution. Speed has remained a crucial metric for customer support because it’s easy to quantify compared to other factors. The quality of conversation and amity between a support agent and their customer will never improve if your support team is looking forward to closing the ticket as soon as possible.
Marketing – Spray and pray doesn’t pay
Marketing is an impatient job. No marketer is satisfied with the current amount of leads, level of brand recognition, the social media presence, or with the general size of the sales funnel at any point.
This impatience will most likely drive more campaigns and more promotions; there are times when your team has to kick emails into overdrive. However, more emails are not the solution to your problems. The average consumer receives 416 commercial emails per month (source). Stacking your mailing list and blasting a constant stream of email alerts will not make you stand out from the other emails your prospect is receiving.
Your team can quickly generate a mailing list if they know who they’re sending it to, and what the content is, but slow marketing gives them something which makes you standout—the why. Your team can only understand why they need to send a campaign to a particular audience if they can truly empathize with them.
Talk to your sales team and find out who in your target audience has already been approached, and what stage of negotiation they dropped out. Take it slow and do your research to get crucial information that can lead to better, more finely targeted campaigns.
In order to keep your team from going to hell for leather, try out some visual management strategies. Implementing visual management for business doesn’t require a monumental effort; we’ve been subconsciously adapting visual management tools in our personal and professional lives. When everything goes haywire, you can start by using our free Kanban Board Extension to help visualize the data in your Zoho CRM.