How to Convert Leads Into Clients, According to Science
Wish there was a scientific formula that explained how to convert leads into actual paying clients? Good news: there is! The catch is this: it’s not just one specific process. In fact, there are several scientifically sound techniques showing how to convert leads consistently. Below, we’ll explain how to convert your most valuable leads into clients on a regular basis and grow your business.
How to Convert Leads Using Tried-And-True Behavioral Science Techniques
If you’re like most small business owners, you’ll want to put these foolproof conversion techniques into practice immediately. After all, knowing how to convert clients is key for growing revenue and staying competitive in today’s market.
Without further delay, here are the five techniques you must try — and the scientific data to back them up:
1. Use open body language to help establish trust with potential clients.
Prospects want to see that you’ll solve their problems and that your services provide a clear value. For example: One method that works for most lawyers is to use the “SOLER” approach. Here’s what that means: First of all, your intent matters. Before you even set up an initial meeting with a potential client, you must decide on your intent as an attorney. That means deciding how you intend to fulfill your professional role, no matter the circumstances.
Now, let’s look at the meaning of the acronym. It stands for:
- Eye contact
Lawyers should face prospective clients head on. Make sure your body posture is open (i.e., no crossed arms or legs). Open body posture is interpreted as openness in attitude and general receptiveness. Research shows, in fact, that when people adopt open body posture, they listen better and absorb more information. Leaning slightly forward and establishing eye contact is an additional, yet crucial sign you’re giving your undivided attention. It is important to note, however, that in some cultures, sustained eye contact may make prospects uncomfortable. If you see this, shift your gaze. A relaxed body means no hunched or tense shoulders. No fidgeting. Project a calm and present mind to appear relaxed, yet confident.
2. Mirror your prospects (both in person and on calls).
Mirroring movements establishes rapport and helps align the speed and formality of an in-person meeting. And surprisingly, it’s also important for phone calls. A research team recently applied machine learning to 25,537 B2B sales conversations and learned some interesting things. For example, the average salesperson talks too much — as in, 65-75% of total time on a call. If you’re on the phone, follow the ideal 50/50 ratio of talking-to-listening.
3. Ask more questions.
Studies show we spend 60% of conversations talking about ourselves, because it makes us feel good. Talking about ourselves, according to research, activates the reward systems in our brains. So, what’s the takeaway for converting more clients? Always start initial meetings asking about the prospect’s needs and goals, and answer questions instead of selling your services or experience. Knowing how to convert prospects means learning what their needs are first before you can confidently offer the right solution.
Studies show smiling makes us appear competent and confident. Ask any successful salespeople how to convert more clients, and they’ll tell you these two traits are key. Plus, smiling is socially contagious! Make it a habit to smile when you answer your phone, when a prospect leaves the room, etc. Doing this automatically makes each lead more likely to have a positive association with you — and become a signed client. A genuine grin also reduces stress, which is a common issue during sales calls.
5. Can’t close now? That’s okay.
Let your lead walk away with follow-up guidance and a deadline to take action. For example, lawyers — give prospects a checklist of things to do next even if they don’t retain your services. Then, write the month and year the statute of limitations will expire for that prospect’s case on your printed checklist. Just below that, include your phone number, email address and your signature.
According to scientific research, creating a sense of urgency (via the deadline) in your leads works when follow-up instructions are given. By giving leads some concrete, useable information and a deadline, you’re likely to stay front-of-mind and convert more clients.
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