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Leads and opportunities are different.

If a company spends money in your segment, that company is a lead. Even if they spend a massive amount of money, they are still just a lead. Spending a lot in your segment doesn’t make them an opportunity.

If this company would benefit from using you to buy the product, service, or solution you sell, it’s a still only a lead (maybe even a qualified lead). If you have had a conversation with some contact within the company to learn about their needs and some ways that you might help them, it’s a lead, or maybe a qualified prospect. But it still isn’t an opportunity.

If you have no commitment to explore working together and to take the next step in that process, the company is still only a lead. Without a commitment to pursue working together (something that results in this company potentially buying from you) there is no opportunity.

If you have the names of companies that fit this description in your sales force automation and they haven’t moved from their present stage for months (or years), that company is a really a lead. To transform it into an opportunity, you need to gain some commitment to take steps towards working together to turn it into an opportunity.

If it’s a lead, treat it as such and work to create an opportunity. If it’s really an opportunity, gain the commitments you need to move it forward.


Why are some “opportunities” really just leads?

What has to happen for a lead to convert to an opportunity?

What commitment does the company you are pursuing need to make to convert it from lead into an opportunity?

How many opportunities in your pipeline are really leads? How should you go about converting them into opportunities?

Sales 2012
Post by Anthony Iannarino on May 2, 2012

Written and edited by human brains and human hands.

Anthony Iannarino
Anthony Iannarino is a writer, an author of four books on the modern sales approach, an international speaker, and an entrepreneur. Anthony posts here daily.
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