spoiler: you have about 30 days
Have you heard this? In sales the odds of converting an inbound lead drop 95% if you wait more than an hour to call them.
A ton of research has been done on “lead response time” in sales. Basically the window you have to convert a new inbound lead is incredibly tiny. Harvard Business Review conducted a Lead Response Management Study in 2011. Follow up studies by other organizations since all confirm similar findings:
- 78% of customers buy from the first company that responds to their inquiry (Lead Connect study)
- 391% increase in conversions when leads are contacted within the same minute they signed up (Lead Connect study)
- 900% increase in ability to make contact if called within first 5 minutes vs within 10 minutes (InsideSales Lead Response Audit)
Based on personal experience and chatter in Facebook Ad groups, when it comes to Facebook lead ads, if you wait two days, approx. 1/3 of people won’t even remember having signed up for whatever offer you put in front of them.
Cultivating subscribers into customers by email isn’t much different
Similarly with your email list, you have to make contact right away. But you also have to earn attention.
If you can earn and maintain a subscriber’s attention, you have about 30 days to convert them into a paying customer before your odds diminish significantly.
The key takeaway?
Spend more time focusing on the emails they’ll receive in that first 30 days
The highest potential value for the subscriber and you lies in that series of key initial conversations you have with them. So thoughtfully setting the tone for the relationship is best done by determining what emails you’ll send them for that 30 email period.
Your alternative is dumping new subscribers into your live daily emails immediately or after a short autoresponder. That’s a problem because you’re leaving your odds of converting them up to whatever live emails you happen to be writing that month.
Remember the cocktail party analogy? You may have a chance at earning someone’s attention if they step in mid-conversation to a conversation that happens to be of interest to them. But you have a much better chance of earning their attention if you’re talking directly to them about something they care about.
Let’s go through the typical (qualified) new subscriber’s headspace.
Your top of funnel content resonates, they’re in-market for what you are offering, and they’re signaling (through engagement) that so far you’re giving them what they need. You’ve just opened a whole world up to them. They feel like grateful they just found exactly what they were looking for!
Now their activity and attention is at its highest point.
The moment they are most likely to buy
They’ll binge on your posts, anticipate your emails, and want more. It’s that headspace of wanting more that puts them in a buying mindset: a program, a book, a consult, a more structured and valuable version of what they’ve been getting or the next level.
That is the moment they are most likely to buy. If you aren’t ready, if you aren’t aware of that headspace they’re in, you might default to talking about whatever you happen to be thinking about that day, week, month.
Not as helpful.
Don’t believe me?
Take a look at your own sales data. Aside from time-bound product launches, look at your last 100 new customer sales and ask yourself:
What percentage of first sales happened within a new subscribers’ first 30 days versus after?