Whether you’re new to web generated leads or have been using the practice for years, a question that often comes up is “how quickly should I call a lead?” The answers often vary and the rationalizations for these answers are mixed.

Generally, the rule of thumb is that you should call a lead back as soon as possible in order to catch them while they are available and because they will still be in the moment of recalling their situation. Calling them right away can increase your chances of setting up an appointment.

A study by Lead Response Management (LRM), a provider of lead response management tools and services, had some interesting findings.

The chances of connecting with a lead increases by 100 times if the attempt to contact the lead was initiated within five minutes. The odds of converting the lead within those five minutes is 21 times higher than if you tried to reach them within 30 minutes.

On the other hand the odds of contacting a lead decrease by over 10 times in the first hour and the odds of qualifying them decreases by 6 times in the first hour. After 20 hours, every time you attempt to reach the lead you’re actually hurting your ability to contact and qualify them.

The survey also found that Wednesdays and Thursdays were the best day to call and qualify leads and the best hours were between 4 and 6pm. Does this mean you should wait until then to contact your lead? No.

Another study by Harvard Business Review notes that companies who try to contact leads within an hour of receiving queries are 6 times more likely to have a meaningful conversation with decision makers than those who try to contact them later.

Unfortunately the study also notes that only 37 percent of companies respond to inquiries within one hour.

If your firm is not part of the small percentage that is returning a lead’s inquiry within an hour, it is time to create a system or plan. By creating a proper course-of-action you will know that your firm is working to maximize your online lead opportunities.

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