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Stuerke, who began developing innovative marketing strategies while working as a financial advisor, says he has found four ways professionals commonly lose sales leads.

“And they can all be fixed!” he says.

• Advertising calls-to-action that are all-or-nothing. Most salespeople offer only a face-to-face meeting or a telephone appointment as their call to action in their advertising. But that’s asking a lot of prospects who are simply exploring options and aren’t yet ready for that level of commitment. Those are leads that, three-to-six months from now, may become sales—but they’re lost early in the process. Instead, offer a less committed option such as “download this free report” in exchange for their information for follow up.

• No lead capture on your website. Many sites have no strategy for capturing information about visitors to the site, such as an email address. As a result, businesses spend thousands of dollars driving traffic to their website, while capturing none of the prospects’ information. As a result, those prospects come to the site and leave, and the business never knows they were there. A free report, or series of reports or videos with useful information based on your expertise, are good lead capture tools. Buyers today turn to the Web for information while doing research, so that’s what you should give them. Offering free resources in exchange for a small bit of information is a great way to do that.

• Indifference in interactions. No matter what your profession, it’s likely you’ve got a lot of competition. For consumers, shopping includes researching, and they’re comparing services, expertise and experience before deciding who best deserves their patronage. If your interactions with prospects fail to “wow” them, they will quickly move on. But most professionals don’t have a storyboarded plan for giving prospects that experience, which is what is needed for consistent results. An automated system that delivers carefully planned interactions is a great way to achieve this.

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