A Story from the Front Lines of B2B Lead Generation
As a leading B2B lead generation company, we often sign deals with clients who are skeptical of our services and ready to back out at any minute. If they don’t get instant gratification within a few weeks of going live, they question if our services are really worth it.
A Florida-based commercial roofing client knew that they didn’t have the time or the expertise to implement an in-house outbound sales strategy, but they wanted to sell an additional $1 million in commercial roofs each year. Despite signing a contract with us, it was clear they didn’t think we could reach their goals.
It took us a few months, but we completely changed our client’s mind after building a successful sales pipeline and nurturing leads. Read more about how we turned a skeptical roofing client into a self-proclaimed lifelong partner—all because of one deal.
Building a Successful B2B Appointment Setting Strategy in Two Months
Creating a sales pipeline is a complicated and time-consuming process. Before our team can start making appointments, they have to:
- Identify target markets: Our commercial roofing clients usually have specific markets that they want to target. This client preferred restaurant headquarters, commercial property management companies, manufacturing plants and warehouses, hospitals, and industrial buildings with over 5,000 square feet.
- Identify target areas: You can find the perfect lead for a client, but if they’re 1,000 miles away, there’s no point in calling. Our client wanted to focus on prospects in three Florida counties, which narrowed down our list significantly.
- Create a list of leads: Cold calling is only effective if you’re attempting to reach people who would be a good fit for your service. We strategically create a list of leads and ensure they are in the right target market and area.
- Cleanse leads: Our sales team reaches out to contacts on their list to gather more information and determine if they are a qualified lead. We also use data to help improve our sales strategy and establish credibility.
We had a few months to research companies and gather preliminary data on our leads before we went live on Feb. 1, 2021.
February 2021: First Month Live
By the time we reached February, we had an extensive list of companies in Florida that seemed like they would be a good fit for our client. Like most of our commercial roofing partners, this client wanted to get more leads through their doors and close more deals, and they preferred the “quantity over quality” B2B appointment setting strategy. We were instructed to set as many appointments as possible, even if the lead was unlikely to sign a contract.
So, we began the process of cold calling, emailing, nurturing leads, and setting appointments. Many of our prospects didn’t quite fit the criteria our clients had set—their buildings were too small, their companies weren’t big enough, or they were right outside of our client’s target area. Our client wanted as many meetings as they could get, so we set appointments with a few lukewarm leads, and they all ended up being dead ends.
Building a sales pipeline is a lengthy process; even if you move at lightning speed, you probably won’t even start setting appointments until a few months in. In the commercial roofing space, it typically takes 39 days and over 9 calls before we can even get a prospect to agree to a meeting, and that’s usually for small jobs.
Expecting your outbound sales strategy to pay off after one month is unrealistic, and we explained that to our client. The first month of a B2B appointment setting strategy usually involves our sales reps getting shouted at, hung up on, or fed every excuse in the book. Still, we wanted to produce results and prove our client wrong, so we decided to switch up our strategy.
March 2021: Pivoting Our B2B Appointment Setting Strategy
We usually don’t start to think about pivoting our strategy until at least a few months into the pipeline-building process. Four weeks isn’t enough time to see if your strategy is working. However, we were getting pushback from our client—they wanted to close a deal, and soon. So, our account team decided to pivot to a “quality over quantity” strategy.
Sometimes, we can get away with taking a high-volume approach toward lead generation. If our clients are looking for small jobs in a large client pool, we can set frequent appointments that lead to signed deals. However, in this commercial roofing client’s case, they wanted us to help them generate a massive amount of revenue from a few big-ticket sales, which was not an easy task.
We started taking a more flexible lead qualification and appointment setting approach in early March. Leads that we would have otherwise continued nurturing fell out of our sales pipeline, and we spent most of our time trying to find facilities managers for local hospitals, schools, hotels, warehouses, and commercial real estate complexes. We were setting fewer appointments, but those appointments were with highly interested leads in our client’s target markets.
April 7, 2021: ‘This Isn’t Working’
On April 7, our Partner Account Manager received an email from our commercial roofing client that simply said: “This isn’t working.” Our client was ready to write us off in only two months because our services hadn’t led to any successful deals. We had an appointment set for April 8 with a key decision-maker from a local school, but we were unsure if our client would even attend.
April 9, 2021: ‘Partners for Life’
By April 9, we thought that our client was gone for good—they weren’t answering our calls or emails. Turns out, they were busy closing a $100,000 reroof with the lead we had sent over on April 8. Though we were sending over fewer leads, we knew that these leads were likely to make deals with our client. Within two days of their appointment, our client signed a contract worth six figures.
A few days after our client told us they were ready to leave the program, they called us and said: “You guys are making us money, so of course we will be partners for life.”
What could more deals mean for your commercial roofing company?
B2B Appointment Setting Is Worth it—Here’s Why
Outsourced sales often gets a bad rap. Many of our client partners don’t believe that we can actually make a difference in their revenue using traditional outbound sales strategies. They think that cold calling is outdated and appointment setting won’t lead to any quality deals. However, as our commercial roofing client discovered, our B2B appointment setting services are 100% worth it if you want to grow your roofing business. Here’s why:
- We get to know your business before we start building a pipeline. Every roofing company has different goals. We spend a few months getting to know your business before searching for the right prospects.
- We take the time to identify, contact, and set appointments with solid leads. You can focus on projects while we use our expertise to generate revenue.
- We only send qualified leads. Our sales reps have years of experience determining which contacts are worth chasing. We set appointments with decision-makers who are ready to sign contracts.
- We give you a competitive edge. Roofing is a cutthroat industry. If you don’t connect with a lead at the right time, your competitors will. Our lead generation process allows us to find the best leads before anyone else does.
If you need outside assistance in creating a sales pipeline for your commercial roofing business, we can help. Abstrakt has spent more than a decade developing commercial roofing B2B lead generation programs, and we have a proven track record of success. Don’t wait to start growing your business—contact us today.
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