What Is Lead Scoring?
Lead scoring is used to rank sales prospects based on the perceived value each will bring to the organization. In lead scoring, numerical “points” are assigned to each lead generated, based on things like client demographic and type of business (and how closely these align with your product or service), and how they’ve engaged with your company so far.
Why should you lead score?
It may take some time to develop your company’s specific lead scoring methodology upfront, but it will end up increasing your revenue in the long-run. Any company’s most important asset is its people and their time, and lead scoring allows you to focus your team’s time and energy on the right prospects. Time ultimately equals money. Lead scoring allows you to convert opportunities faster.
How do you determine lead scores?
How do you determine the attributes that will impact a prospect’s lead score? Every industry and every business will use different attributes and assign different values based on their unique goals. An easy place to start is by analyzing your client data. Here’s a few data points you may be able to find:
- Industry focus
- Revenue ranges
- Employee count ranges
- Competitive win vs loss stats
Additional data points you should also consider:
Prospect Touchpoints: How have they engaged with your company or sales team so far? Has there been direct engagement? Have they responded to your emails? Have they connected with you on social media, especially LinkedIn?
Inbound Activity: This includes form fills, inbound emails, responses to marketing emails or responses to surveys. Also put a valuation on marketing email opens, even if there hasn’t been a response.
Business Fit: Consider industry and business focus fit. Does your lead’s company align with the product or service you are trying to sell? Are they in the same industry as many of your current clients? If so, they should be scored higher, because there is a higher likelihood that they will engage with you and find your product useful.
Company Size: Consider the lead’s company. What is their revenue? What is their employee count? If their revenue is growing quickly, they may be more likely to be actively seeking new and innovative solutions from external vendors. Also take some time to do media research on the company. What partnerships, business deals or acquisitions have they engaged in in the past? Have they recently made or lost money? Do their goals for the future, according to executive interviews, align with what you are selling? Anything you learn can be helpful not just for lead scoring but for your sales strategy.
Focus on the Most Likely Targets
Sales reps and marketing teams should focus on the most likely targets. This will maximize their time and productivity on leads that are most likely to bear results. Each success, in turn, creates momentum within the team, and drives a more positive culture of “winning” within the company.
A smart lead scoring system will also get your business in front of the most likely prospects ahead of the competition. It’s important not to think of lead scoring as a “one and done” methodology. Your sales team should continually track and measure success versus lead-scored accounts to make sure your metrics are indicating the right targets. Rerun the lead score analytics regularly and adjust as needed. This includes touchpoints, opportunity conversions, and win/loss metrics.
Lead Score Primary Points of Contact
You should develop a lead score not just for each particular company, but also for each primary point of contact. Keep track of who you engaged with, how many touchpoints you have in the company, and who was involved in the sales process on your side. One touchpoint may respond well to a particular salesperson or style of sales, while another may not. Similarly, one touchpoint may understand the need for your product or service, while another may not.
Lead scoring can be one of the most valuable ways for sales teams to increase their likelihood of success. Not only will the data help reps determine which prospects to target, but it will increase their confidence as they receive more frequent responses and convert more prospects into clients.