A lot of organizations struggle with generating qualified leads. Emphasis on qualified. Getting leads is usually not the problem. But qualifying them; that's the real challenge. Ask yourself. How many times is Sales following up a lead, just to find out they're not really interested (yet)? That's what we call a cold lead.
You can warm up your lead in many ways before passing them to Sales for more nurturing. One of those methods, is Scoring.
Scoring slowly warms up your leads. For example: most visitors of your website are not ready to purchase yet when they first visit your website. Your prospects get warmed up by interacting (automatically) with the content of your organization on a regular basis. They get more familiar with your brand. They are given points for each mail open, click, download, site visit, et cetera. The amount of interactions a prospect has with your organization tells how interested they actually are. The more points, the more interest, the warmer the lead.
Scoring your prospects automatically based on interactions, means you no longer have to perform manual analyses of all interactions with the customer. The only thing you needto do is deciding how many points a prospect scores for each interaction. Together you decide at which threshold your prospect is handed over from Marketing to Sales.
Scoring with Pardot
One of the marketing automation solutions that helps you with this is Pardot. Whenever someone visits your website, Pardot will start tracking this visitor. A small cookie is taking care of that. The page visit will give them their 1st points. All interactions after that will be rewarded with the out-of-the-box scores within Pardot. These out-of-the-box scores can be changed, if needed.
For example; whenever a prospect submits a form, they get rewarded with 50 points. The prospect leaves their contact information. This means they’re interested. You can compare this activity with a less engaging activity, like visiting a page on your website. Less engaging activities are only worth one point.
Using scoring makes it possible to create dynamic, personalised content for the prospect based on their score and phase of their customer journey. Because you get more insights in the customers’ interests, it will be easier to personalize the content based on their needs. Leads with a lower score, which indicates they’re still orienting, can be sent more generalized information. Leads that are already deeper into the funnel (because of their clicks, mail opens and downloads) have shown you how interested they are. This makes it easier to create personalized dynamic content.
If there’s another interaction with this content, their score will be even higher.
From Marketing to Sales / Sales Qualified Leads
If the prospect score hits the threshold; that means they’re warmed up and ready to get passed from Marketing to Sales. You can create your own thresholds. For example, a prospect needs a score of 100 points or higher to be Sales qualified. Marketing automation tools enable you to keep track of your prospects’ engagement automatically. Whenever the threshold is hit, the prospect can be passed to Sales. This can be done automatically as well. Sales will get a ‘warmed up lead’. Sales can also see which information the lead has received throughout their journey, and which interaction sparked the most interest. This can make the call Sales is making or the email they will send way easier.
Another additional benefit is that scoring enables you to measure the ROI of your marketing activities. You can follow a prospect from the start of their journey until they’ve converted. This means you can also see what the total costs were to convert this prospect. Whenever your prospect (or let’s say customer from now on) makes a purchase, you know the ROI of that specific purchase.
Benefits of scoring:
- It brings Sales and Marketing teams together. The lead scoring process will be standardized, which means both teams know when and how leads will be qualified.
- More revenue. You will create high quality leads, so Sales will be able to sell more easily and quickly.
- Better insights of your marketing expenses and their ROI. If you know where the customer journey start, you can use those marketing channels to create campaigns that deliver conversions. This helps spending your marketing expenses efficiently.
- More and better interaction with your prospects based on their needs. Lead scoring makes it easier to categorize your leads. You can use that to create the next steps needed to qualify your leads.
Combining Scoring with Grading is even better. That’s something we will discuss later in another article.