Have you ever wondered where and how you get your leads? Marketing often offers them up, but what data points do they consider the most important?
Having a data-driven lead scoring process in place leads to higher conversion rates and can boost lead generation ROI by 77 percent, according to a study by Marketing Sherpa.
To better align the sales and marketing teams, it’s important for both teams to understand the data points that constitute a qualified lead. Here are seven ways many marketing teams are scoring leads.
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Starting with the basics, many teams first consider location. Does the business target a certain part of the country, like the east coast? Does the company focus on city dwellers or rural residents? Does the product need to be delivered or installed? Leads within an organization’s geographic parameters get higher scores.
The type of person may also be considered. Does the product or service appeals more to retirees or families with young children? People that fit the ideal buying persona are scored higher. Last thing you as a salesperson wants to do is spend time following up on a lead outside your region!
2. Company and Role
If it is a B2B company, the marketing team is definitely considering industry type, company size and whether they are B2B or B2C. Those outside of that niche get lower scores, while those within the parameters are given higher score.
And as far as the lead or contact goes, those that are farther away from the decision-maker will typically be scored lower than those who are close to (or are) the decision-maker.
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3. Website Behavior or Early Buying Signals
How a prospect behaves on company website shows their level of interest in the product and the pages they visit determine what stage in the buying process they are. If they visit the “About” or “How it works” page then they are likely in the awareness stage, but they may be in the consideration stage if they’re visiting the pricing page. Each behavior sends very different messages about how ready they are; the prospects that are farther along in the process should be scored higher.
Marketing also sees how often each lead downloads gated content or engages further with the company website. Those that downloaded an ebook or signed up for a newsletter show much higher levels of interest than those that just read various blog posts and poke around the site.
4. Email Engagement
The marketing team is checking how often a prospect opens, reads, and engages with sales emails. Individuals with high open and click-through rates are usually more likely to be interested in the product and will be scored higher.
Email content is also a factor. They hike up that score for people that interact with high-value emails (like demos or free trials).
Helpful Tip: It typically takes five follow-ups to reach a prospect. However, if you send them five emails and none of them are opened, the prospect’s interest level is low and should have a corresponding lead score (what we’re trying to say is stop wasting time on bad leads!).
5. Social Engagement
How often a prospect interacts with social content can also tell a lot about their interest levels. This is one method most marketing teams use to score the social engagement for leads:
- Low lead score: People that follow the company page
- Medium lead score: People that like company posts
- High leads score: People that share or retweet company content
6. Data Scoring
Now that many of the important metrics have been laid out, how does the marketing team weight the different data points? Marketing typically looks at past closed deals and the buyer journey of successful deals. If the path that leads from a blog post to ebook download to email nurture is the most successful buying path, then leads following that path will be scored higher. Perhaps people that engage on the company’s social sites but not the website tend not to buy as often, then those leads will get a lower score.
This is where marketing can lean on sales for further insight and direction. Sales knows what worked and what hasn't and can help marketing decide which data points should be weighed heavier than others. This is where alignment and open communication is key.
Many marketing teams have already turned to automation to collect and analyze all of the leads and their corresponding data. The marketing team weighs the score for each data point and the lead scoring tool calculates the score. Now the sales reps know immediately who to go after.