So, you have spoken to Adrac, qualified for the partnership program and gone through the extensive Adrac on boarding process. You’ve told us about your targets, aspirations, possible bottlenecks and your competition. Based on this information, the qualified Adrac Operations team has built campaigns, tested tracking and given feedback on the conversion journey. What’s more, your campaigns are generating enquires.
If your inbound marketing strategy is working well (and it should be given the efforts that Adrac makes for every single one of our clients), you might find yourself swamped with leads. While this is undeniably a great problem to have, it can also cause problems, the key one being, you may find yourself unable to deal with the volumes of enquires coming through. What to do?
Long term, you’ll need to increase and expand the resources you deploy to handle all incoming enquires. This will ensure each and every one is handled with the care and attention required for an excellent customer service experience. With recruitment, induction and training all taking time, a more immediate solution is often required and that’s where lead scoring comes in.
You need to start by identifying who’s a hot lead and who’s not. Particularly because, if you treat each lead equally and assign the same amount of limited time and resources to each one because you aren’t sure how to prioritise them, you might find some of your hot leads grow cold.
Luckily, there are ways to organise your leads so you make the most of every business opportunity that comes your way. You just need to lead score your enquiries.
What is lead scoring?
It might sound like it’s a horribly complicated marketing job but actually, lead scoring is pretty simple in theory (and should be deployed weather there are resource limitations or not). It’s simply a case of assigning a value to each incoming lead. This often means giving each lead a certain number of points. A lead may get more points depending on where they come from or the information they submit. (triage for leads).
Once your leads all have points, you know which leads are most valuable so your sales or marketing teams can reach out to them first. This helps you to grow your conversions so lead scoring is a fantastic way to eke even more ROI from your marketing spend.
Who is it appropriate for?
You’ll often hear lead scoring discussed in B2B environments, but actually, this practise is also highly relevant to some B2C businesses too, especially those which involve more significant purchases or those which involve the interaction of a sales team. Some examples of B2C businesses who could benefit from lead scoring include estate agent selling properties, automotive sales and even significant financial products such as mortgages.
Lead scoring is often confused with prospecting and customer nurturing, both of which play a part in the sales funnel, but it’s not the same thing.
How does it work?
Lead scoring is a process by which a business is able to prioritise and correctly order the follow up of leads based on the value of that lead to the business.
The value of the lead (its score) is often based around either the likelihood of a conversion or the anticipated value of a sale. Of course, if your business is able to confidently assign a score or value to your leads, you’re then able to prioritise and more effectively deal with those which have a higher value.
Prioritisation of leads can be as simple as dealing with them first, dedicating time to following up and nurturing those leads which seems most promising. For some businesses it may even be a simple case of passing the leads with the highest considered value to the most experienced and proven members of your sales force or account management team.
In a business where sales and account management resource is in short supply or the quantity of inbound leads is particularly high, this process is vitally important. It’s only by scoring and prioritising that the high value leads will be given the attention they warrant when you’re either rushed off your feet as a small business or inundated with dozens of new leads every day.
Lead scoring also has implications on the top of the sales funnel as well. As leads are scored and valued, you’ll want to investigate where those leads were been generated.
Most businesses will have multiple sources of lead generation and will also likely be using multiple marketing channels. Being able to quantify the value of inbound leads received by source and channel tells you which channels are generating the most profitable leads. In many cases, those channels will be using a portion of your marketing budget. Knowing which spend is generating leads and which activities aren’t gives you the opportunity to fine tune your marketing activity and reduce wasted spend in areas that aren’t performing.
The process for identifying and scoring leads will differ from one business to the other but will typically follow two standard models;
Demographic Matching – The demographic information of the lead is rated by determining how closely the lead matches the business’ ideal customer or the audience type proven to convert at a higher rate than others.
Displayed Interest Markers – This method is often used for leads captured digitally. If you have your analytics and CRM working in sync, you’ll be able to see the level to which a prospect has investigated and researched your company and your product or service. A lead generated off the back of multiple site visits, multiple product views or perhaps a visit to your pricing page would be considered to have a greater lead score than a prospect who has completed fewer of those actions.
Equally there may be one or two major markers that show keen interest from a prospect. They may have downloaded a digital brochure or pricing document for example. These actions would be considered a greater interest marker than signing up to the newsletter.
If you are involved in a business which handles a high volume of leads, lead scoring is an effective way to streamline your lead nurturing and follow up efforts. It’s a proven way to ensure that high value leads are dealt with promptly and with the best available resource. It will also allow you to identify your most valuable sources of lead generation and in turn allow you to nurture the most effective first.
There is initial efforts required to identify the elements that are important and points need to be assigned and whilst there is no perfect system deploying a lead scoring system gives value and focus as well as a flexibility in times of need to streamline and impact resource effectiveness. Lead scoring has been used to great effect in Adrac partner companies from large to small.
If you’d like to know more about lead scoring, contact the Adrac team today.