This post is the first in a three part series I will be doing on velocity.

These days marketers are really good at measuring a lot of things. Most marketers can tell you their CPA or CPL, their MQL conversion rate and a whole host of other metrics. However, very seldom do I hear about velocity.

Velocity can have the biggest direct impact on closed deals considering data reported in 2013 by Yahoo Small Business Advisor showing that contacting a lead within five minutes yields a 78 percent close rate, compared with a 19 percent close rate when the response to a lead is within five to 30 minutes. Further, a pipeline moving 2x as fast can be 1/2 the value of a comparable pipeline. The essence is simple - move deals as fast as you can through the sales pipeline. Time is the enemy of every sale.

While understanding the average sales cycle is an important part of velocity, you cannot impact velocity without also understanding the break points that lead to your average sales cycle. Consider your basic lead flow below.

As you can see there are 5 levers available that will impact velocity. I can tweak anyone of these breakpoints to increase my velocity. Further, by measuring these breakpoints you can also see where your leads are getting hung up. Mapping out a process like the above is an important first step in understanding your organization's velocity. How many breakpoints does your organization have?

In my next post, I will talk about some of the things you can do to increase velocity at each point.