Considering how important lead generation is in the world of B2B marketing, it is surprising that almost 80 percent of B2B marketers say they have not established a solid lead scoring strategy. Lead scoring helps a business prioritize leads according to engagement and without a strategy, leads and sales can be lost.
Lead scoring also provides real-time feedback that tells you how responsive your leads are to your marketing efforts and can indicate which leads are ready to buy. By identifying your hottest leads, you can reach out to these leads knowing that they have already expressed an interest in what you are selling.
Before you can reap the benefits of lead scoring, however, you must have a lead scoring system in place. What follows are the most basic steps involved in any lead scoring strategy:
- Decide what constitutes the ideal lead. What information are you looking for when it comes to leads? For example, do you want to know where they work? What they do for a living? How old they are? Their income level?
- Focus on your target audience. What are the common characteristics that those in your target share? This information allows you to identify who your typical customer is and what he or she needs from you.
- Assign values to particular characteristics. Assign a point score based on what characteristics are most important in terms of identifying your typical customer. After you have identified point values you can development an even more in-depth system that will allow you to qualify leads even further and help you to determine how qualified a lead is.
- Determine where a lead is in the sales funnel. Keep an eye on the buyer’s journey so you approach a lead at the correct time. Contacting a lead too early or too late can result in a lost sale.
- Refine, refine, refine. Lead scoring is not an exact science. It will be necessary to make changes as you perfect your lead scoring strategy. It is important to fine tune your lead scoring models so that you get the most accurate results.
Lead scoring is essential to your business’ bottom line because your sales team won’t waste valuable time and energy on leads that aren’t likely to convert. It also allows a business to focus on those leads who are most likely to convert. Finally, when done correctly, it will minimize the length of the sales cycle, improve conversion rates, and in many cases, increase the average size of the sale.