Businesses that rely on inbound marketing need to constantly improve their lead management process. Since 85% of B2B companies consider lead management organization to be a top priority, it’s important to build effective, simplified lead management systems that close the gap between your marketing and sales teams, while increasing conversions and sales.
Here are some of the most vital steps to improve lead management, so you can generate more leads and convert them into customers.
1. Discover and Qualify Your Ideal Leads
Know your ideal prospect and buyer personas. Let your marketing and sales teams work together to provide the information you need. This should include:
- The location, gender, age, career and status of your buyers
- The kind of information they’re looking for online
- The sources that give you the greatest number of leads: social activity, media campaigns, search engine marketing, etc.
- The mindset of your ideal client and their primary role in their company
2. Arrange a Content Plan Around Your Funnel
Basically, your content should address prospects who are at any of these four stages in your sales funnel:
- Unaware: Create awareness of your brand or service with blog posts, articles, analyst papers, explainer videos.
- Prospect Is Interested: Use educational eBooks and buyer guides, whitepapers, webinars and events to show your prospects why they need to buy your products.
- Prospect Acknowledges There’s a Problem: Let the prospect get a free trial or demo version. Provide customer testimonials and invite them to seminars and podcasts.
- Potential Client Seeks a Solution: Provide details of the product’s features and let the prospect know they’ll be making the best choice by choosing you. Expound on the product’s benefits, too.
3. Develop a Lead Nurturing Strategy
Your business needs a lead nurturing strategy that works in your niche. The primary goal of your strategy is to engage your audience and move them quickly through your sales funnel. Basically, you need to:
- Define various lead segments and identify their needs.
- Establish key performance indicators (KPIs) that let know when you’ve achieved success with each segment.
- Set up a timeline for each lead to convert.
- Create content for each lead segment.
- Develop email campaigns for each segment.
- Concentrate on delivering value rather than pushing the sale.
- Define your channels for social media nurturing.
- Establish a feedback loop to evaluate the success of your strategy.
- Monitor your click-through rates for all your lead nurturing emails.
4. Score Your Leads
A common mistake made by many business owners and marketers is sending all leads to the sales department without qualifying them. This is simply not efficient. Remember that at least a third of those leads won’t be qualified for follow-up with your sales team. Score your leads based on demographics, response to your first lead nurturing emails and the frequency of viewing your site. Scoring reduces the volume of poor quality leads. Remember to:
- Set up criteria to score each lead.
- Use a point value system to assign scores to each lead.
- Fix a value to determine a lead that’s ready for sales.
- Improve the scoring system based on feedback from sales.
5. Pass the Correct Leads to Sales
According to recent statistics, many companies gather and send invalid leads to their sales team:
- 38% of leads processed by Marketing and Sales are invalid.
- 30% of invalid leads are because of the wrong phone number.
- 28% of invalid leads are caused by wrong emails.
- 27% of invalid leads are caused by fake names.
- Businesses using lead generation tools and technology saved 40% in 2017.
Setting up an automated lead management system will help pass on the leads to Sales at the right time. While passing them on:
- Make sure the lead scores indicate that there’s no need for more nurturing.
- Provide all the data gathered during the lead nurturing process to enhance the closing process.
- Let Sales review the information thoroughly before contacting the lead.
- Ensure that Sales provides enough feedback data to assess the entire lead nurturing and conversion process.