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Qualifying: The Warm Lead Challenge

“I have too many prospective requests coming in, and I’m finding it hard to keep up. Warm leads sometimes come in so fast and furious perhaps this is a good problem, but it can be somewhat frustrating, as I’d like to benefit from each request, although it isn’t always possible. What might you suggest?”

No matter how you slice it, a problem is a problem, so I’m glad you sent this to me. If you have too many leads coming in, you need to have specific key indicators that will help you categorize leads into HIGH, MID, AND LOW PROBABILITY.

So, the first thing we need to do is this:

First, we would need to make sure of our hot, warm, and cold lead definitions.


If by hot leads you mean inbound leads that have requested a proposal, obviously those need to be responded to ASAP. These types of leads are unpredictable – meaning you have no idea when they will come in, but when they do, they go right to the top of the list – providing they meet specific criteria.


Warm leads are hand-raisers/demo requests etc.


An example of cold leads could be old database leads (that were once hot but now are not) or leads you are prospecting that have not raised their hand.

If you have a ton of hot/warm leads, I’m not sure why even bother with cold leads unless most hot/warm leads are unqualified even to be suspects.

Without knowing more, I would use things like TITLE / INDUSTRY / LEAD TYPE to determine which leads to focus on first.

So take TITLE for example:

One KPI (Key Prospecting Indicator) for sales reps is to know the different titles of their ICP (Ideal Customer Profile).

List out the top 5 titles you typically get and RANK them in order from top to bottom.

The titles that typically close the most go on top, and those are the ones you call FIRST when you see them come in.

So even if you get a flood of inbound leads all at once, simply organizing them by title will help you focus on the ones to call first to have a higher probability of closing a sale.

You can do the same thing with INDUSTRY and LEAD SOURCE to help you further drill down and focus on which leads to call first. I hope this helps.

– Michael Pedone

Michael Pedone is the founder of SalesBuzz.com: Phone Sales Training Course that Reduces Turnover, Increases Pipeline, and Shortens Sales Cycles.

Try a free class today.