Are you having trouble deciding which leads are worthwhile to follow and which ones will end up being a waste of time and resources? Lead scoring may be the missing tool in your business strategy and can help boost your team members’ productivity.
Simply put, lead scoring is a tool used by sales and marketing departments to “score” the worthiness of leads. This is done by attaching values to potential customers based on their interest in the product/good being sold. While many companies utilize lead scoring in their business practices, the scoring method varies from business to business. Leads can be qualified on a number scale, listed from “hot” to “cold”, or even just rated as good and bad.
In order to score a lead, you must gather information about your potential customers or buyer personas. Types of information to consider include: the lead’s occupation in the industry, demographics, and areas of interest. The leads that are deemed an ideal fit and show interest in the product or service receive a high score and are sent off to the sales department. If a lead has a good score, it will be nurtured further by the marketing department with the hopes of converting the lead into an ideal match.
Lead generation is an essential aspect of selling, but not all leads are created equal. Lead scoring will pass the best leads onto your sales team based on revenue potential and buyer readiness. This will increase the efficacy of your sales team and team members will not waste time or resources pursuing leads that don’t translate to sales.
Explicit vs. Implicit Scoring
Now that we’ve discussed the basics of lead scoring, it is important to delve into the difference between explicit and implicit scoring.
Explicit Lead Scoring
Explicit scoring is based on the information you collect on the prospect and is sometimes referred to as demographic scoring. This data is based on the information given by the client that indicates interest in the product or service. For example, if a prospect fills out a form with their information on it, the data collected from that form would be a type of explicit scoring.
Explicit lead scoring ensures your campaigns are targeting the right audience. This method scores leads based on the values or data that are more valuable and more likely to convert than others. If your business is selling engineering software, you would most likely score someone with a job title containing “Engineer” higher than a job title containing “Support”.
Implicit Lead Scoring
On the other hand, implicit scoring, also known as behavioral scoring, is based on the digital behavior or activity of the prospect that indicates interest. A few examples of these types of behaviors include: most visited pages, email opens, content downloaded, etc.
Implicit lead scoring is a great way to monitor those who are interested in your product. The idea behind implicit scoring is that the best prospects will exhibit certain behaviors indicating their intent to purchase.
While both of these lead scoring methods are valuable, it’s important to note that they work best when used together. This will allow you to market and sell to individuals whose actions indicate interest and are in your target audience. Using a model combining both methods may be more complicated, but it will allow you to focus your efforts and increase conversion.
The Importance of Lead Scoring
If you choose not to have a lead scoring system, your sales team will have to go through each one of their potential contacts to weed out the good from the bad. Having a well-run lead scoring system will make your team more effective at their jobs. Instead of reaching out to low-value prospects, they will be able to reach out to the leads that matter most.
A good lead scoring system will also benefit your marketing team. It will allow them to improve the targeting of their marketing initiatives, resulting in finding and attracting the best prospects. Cohesion between sales and marketing teams is difficult to achieve, but quality lead scoring will increase communication between the two departments, and optimizing lead flow is much easier when the two are working together.
When you have an effective lead scoring methodology, your business should see an increase in revenue. By wasting less time on prospects that will never close, you allow more opportunities to attract and convert qualified leads. The cohesion between the sales and marketing teams will better position you to meet your business objectives.
Ali Lucchesi is a former Social Media Intern at RDW with an obsession with all things digital. When she’s not scrolling through social media, you can almost always find her in the kitchen baking something sweet.