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Scoring Nurtured Leads is Good for Business

Please note: Nurtured leads are scored leads. Why nurture them if you’re not going to keep track of them and understand if they’re looking to buy?

Lead scoring is the act of measuring the digital interaction of visitors (a.k.a. leads, prospects, customers, consumers, etc.) with your website and company assets. Lead scoring is a tactic used in the lead nurturing process of marketing. So, what does that mean?

Before we get into the details of what lead scoring is, let’s first identify why we care. It’s pretty simple: lead scoring makes us smarter and more efficient.

The Smart Part

Lead scoring allows you to know more about the people visiting your website, discover the problems they have and the solutions they’re looking for, and measure the content, messaging and tactics you’re using to communicate with them. This allows you as a business to focus on who to talk to with, what information works for where they are in their buying process – while marketing more efficiently. In fact, companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% lower cost (Marketo).

Lead scoring allows you to know what your buyer is interested in – both B2B and B2C – ensuring you can deliver additional information they could use to confirm their interest and secure their purchase. This allows you as a business to focus on who to talk to with what information works for where they are in their buying process – while marketing more efficiently. In fact, companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales ready leads at 33% lower cost (Marketo).

Nurturing leads helps score leads – the two are almost one-in-the-same. While you can nurture leads without scoring them, it’s quite difficult to score leads without nurturing them. Marketing automation makes nurturing easier and more efficient by delivering your messages and information on a timely manner or on a decision-based cadence. Furthermore, automation allows you to measure your campaigns and tactics ROI, delivery rates, usage, effectiveness and more.

 

Nurtured leads make 47% larger purchases than non-nurtured leads. 

The Annuitas Group

It’s incredibly important for sales and marketing to work together for lead scoring because it allows them to align the buying cycle with the sales cycle, bringing a better understanding of where the buyer is within each cycle and whether to send them a correlating piece of content or give them a call. Sales and marketing must agree on the value of a piece of content and where it fits in the “funnel”  – explicit data. What’s a form fill worrth?

Furthermore, they must establish the worth of the personal profile information – implicit data. What’s an SVP of Product worth? It all has to do with the 7-13 people it takes at a major company to make a buying decision (HubSpot). Once you identify those prospects and where they fit in the buying decisions, you can assign a value.

  • Identify your ideal customer by creating a persona for each target market. Are they on your “BANTwagon? (Budget, Authority, Need, Time).
    • Relevant emails drive 18 times more revenue than broadcast emails (Campaign Monitor).
  • Create messaging, content and collateral that informs and describes what your product does and who’s it for.
    • Personalized emails improve click-through rates by 14%, and conversion rates by 10% (Campaign Monitor).
  • Identify and align both your buyer’s journey and your sales cycle and assign specific messaging, content and collateral to each stage.
    • Mapping the customer experience and use of personalized content are deemed the most effective tactics for optimizing marketing automation. (Ascend2)
  • Assign value to explicit behavior such as the information directly shared by a lead on a landing page form (job title, company size, location, years of experience, etc.) and implicit behavior such as visited pages, email opens, shared posts, and downloaded content. Also, asign value to website pages (product profiles, contact us, pricing, careers) and content and asets (blog, webcast, demo video, one-sheet, case study, etc.).
    • Companies with mature lead generation and management practices have a 3% higher sales quota achievement rate.
  • Setup a process for marketing to pass leads to sales based on pre-set milestones or achievements that yield the desired benefit – form fill, number of demo videos, contact requests, etc. This eliminates the need for salespeople to prospect and gives them more time to concentrate on leads that are looking to buy.
    • Prospecting is the most difficult part of the sales process for salespeople (HubSpot).
    • 37% of salespeople struggle most with prospecting (HubSpot).

As you go through these processes, your sales and marketing teams will learn more about your company, what they’re selling and to whom they’re selling it. They’ll also recognize how the sales cycle and buyer’s journey align and intersect and what tactics and content work best in each step of the process. It will also allow the two teams to measure effectiveness of campaigns, content and lead interaction, while identifying what works – and more importantly what doesn’t work. The process allows teams to identify when a lead is ready and should be passed to sales. Lead scoring tracks user engagement, delivering a digital history and story of what your prospects have interacted with and what they’re looking for right to your CRM.

 

If content is king, then conversion is queen.

  • Companies that excel at lead nurturing have 9% more sales repsmaking quota. (HubSpot)
  • Nurtured leads produce, on average, a 20% increase in sales opportunitiesversus non-nurtured leads. (DemandGen)
  • Nurtured leads make 47% largerpurchases than non-nurtured leads. (The Annuitas Group)
  • 74% of top-performing companies use automated lead nurturing. (HubSpot)
  • Lead nurturing can potentially save 80% of your direct mail budget and bring a 10% or greater increase in revenue over 6-9 months (Gartner Research)

Score leads in three ways:

  1. A “fit score” quantifies how well a person matches your ideal target.
  2. An “engagement score” accounts for a lead’s level of interaction with content and thought leadership.
  3. A “buying intent score” tracks when a lead demonstrates key purchase indicators.

How Content Gets Scored

Customize your lead scoring according to the importance of your content and pages. For example, a Contact Us page or a Pricing page will receive a score of 150 because users that visit those pages are showing buying signals. Conversly, a Careers page will receive a score of -150 because a user that visits that page has little interest in making a purchase.

It’s important to score valuable pages and content high, so when a user shows buying signals the score raises them to the top of the lead list in your CRM. This allows sales people to contact the most interested leads first, rather than spending time on others that are not showing buying signals. Lead scoring can make your sales team more effective and efficient, while closing more deals.

Document the Engagement Score

  • Assign values by weighting actions based on recency
  • Determine overall ratings
  • Create a table that maps out the overall rating of a lead based on percentage of profile fit and engagement level

A – D Score Explicit = Profile Fit of Customer 

1 – 4 Implicit Score = Level of Engagement or Interest

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