A website is a simple, essential tool for attracting prospects and leads — evaluating the quality of those leads isn’t so easy. Identifying who may be ready to use your services or who might be an ideal customer saves your agency time and money.
A strong lead-scoring strategy will separate promising leads from unqualified ones.
Lead scoring is a process used to assess the quality of leads or potential customers. While you may have hundreds or even thousands of leads interested in your agency, not all of them will convert into clients.
Nurturing leads that are unlikely to convert costs you valuable time and money that could be spent elsewhere. In this case, quality over quantity rings true as quality leads are more valuable than a large number of flimsy leads.
A lead-scoring model assigns a numerical value to each lead indicating whether a lead is ready to become a customer, needs to be nurtured, or should be removed. The process starts by answering two main questions:
Typically on a scale of 0 to 100, 100 representing the highest-qualified leads, leads are scored on a variety of criteria. Demographics, industry, online engagement, and email behavior are a few examples to consider when evaluating the quality of a lead.
Investing time in developing a lead-scoring process can be a big advantage in the long run. With a solid lead-scoring strategy, you’ll unlock a lot of potential.
When following the 0-100 method, leads with scores between 75-100 can be categorized as hot leads and be prioritized. On the other end, low scores are cold leads and they can be followed up on last, if at all. Hot leads have a greater chance of becoming customers, so they should be where your sales focus shifts first.
Implementing a lead-scoring system doesn’t equate to an increase in the number of leads, but it does help increase the number of qualified leads. By focusing attention on qualified leads, there’s an increased likelihood that they’ll become revenue-generating customers. A survey conducted by Demand Gen Report found that “74% of marketers cited prioritized leads as the biggest payoff of lead-scoring initiatives.”
Only a percentage of leads are qualified — don’t waste time by contacting leads that are unlikely to convert. Lead scoring acts as a filter to identify the leads that are genuinely interested in your agency’s benefits. Instead of contacting random leads and leaving it to chance whether they’re hot or cold, you can prioritize contacts with more potential first. The qualified leads are actively searching for a solution — respond to them sooner and there’s a higher chance they’ll book a meeting or schedule a call.
To develop an effective lead-scoring model, it’s essential to compile data from a variety of sources. Data can be sourced from online forms, account information, and past communications with previous contacts.
An insight into lead demographics, online behavior, and industries opens opportunities to tailor pitches to the prospectives’ specific needs. If the lead is an employer group trying to meet the needs of their Gen Z employees — create a pitch with recommended affordable healthcare plans.
To create an effective lead-scoring model, identify the most valuable conversion points in the sales funnel. Have conversations with sales reps and current clients, review data and analytics, and identify the marketing efforts that lead to higher conversions.
Establish the point in the funnel where leads expressed interest in the agency and when the lead becomes a client. Did the client convert after an email explanation of the different benefits offerings? Or did a demo of the online enrollment software pique their interest?
Ask similar questions for leads that didn’t become clients or stopped interacting with your content. Once data is collected from both sides, the attributes of each potential client that is more and less likely to convert can be identified.
After discovering the most valuable content, evaluate the attributes of the most promising leads. There are two categories to sort attributes, and both need to be taken into account to create an accurate lead-scoring model.
Review demographic factors to gain an understanding of each lead, detect the benefits packages right for them, and determine if they’re qualified to purchase the service. Relevant demographics include job title, company size, industry, and annual revenue.
If your agency specializes in groups with less than 50 employees, then identify the leads that fit that requirement.
To determine a lead’s level of interest, examine the activity and engagement. How are leads moving through the website? Have they downloaded any content? Are they interacting with the email campaigns?
These actions indicate if the lead is interested in your agency. Prospects subscribed to a newsletter with high open and click-through rates are more interested than prospects that haven’t opened any recent emails.
After you’ve established a lead-scoring model based on the demographics and activities that define a qualified lead for your agency, assign a value to each attribute that needs to be taken into consideration. On a scale of 0-100, 100 being the most qualified, assign 5 to 20 points to each attribute. To determine the points to assign to each attribute, follow these steps.
Jane is an HR Manager at a tech startup and she visits your website to fill out a form for a downloadable brochure on small business benefits. She is now considered a lead and a score is assigned for each action.
The original lead score for Jane is 25. Since her email address was provided on the brochure form, she is automatically added to your nurture email campaign. She opens the first email and clicks through to the landing page to watch a video. These actions update her lead score.
Jane’s lead score has increased to 50, triggering an automatic alert to a sales rep to connect with Jane. Based on Jane’s demographic information and the information she engaged with, a tailored pitch can close the deal.
There are many factors to consider when crafting a lead-scoring model for your agency. On top of that, it’s important to decide the weight given to each factor.
There’s no one right answer to a lead-scoring model. As the model is built and utilized, learn from it, refine it, and test it. Again and again and again.
Take it a step further and implement a marketing automation software or customer relationship management system, like these CRM and agency management system (AMS) Marketplace partners. These systems have the capability to guide you through the creation process for your new lead-scoring model.
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