The way business leads are generated continues to evolve with a business and its chaning needs. To increase the likelihood of generating a stronger degree of sales-ready leads and, in turn, achieve more sales, B2B marketers must work with the sales team to track lead quality, and then, decide the best actionable course for each lead.
To generate business leads and to optimize lead quality, follow these five steps for successful lead management:
1. Capture: Qualified leads extend the standard sales cycle by making the first contact with the company. It could be a click on your B2B blog, download of a eBook or white paper, or a comment on a social network site. No matter the location, it's essential to identify and capture the lead for nurturing.
2. Nurture: Leads that are not ready to be handed to sales, go under the lead nurturing bucket. This is because, many leads may be in the research phase, and hence require emails, offers, and targeted content to educate them about the product to help them move ahead in the sales cycle.
3. Score: Successful lead generation is all about generating quality leads. Lead scoring is a great way to segment leads into sales-ready, estimated time to close, probability of a sale, or estimated size of sale.
Scoring leads is based on factors such as demographics, source, and behavior. If a lead scores, he is passed on to sales for further follow-up.
4. Give: Hand-off to the sales team is more than just passing him to the next team. For effective hand-off, it is important to collect details about the prospect, such as marketing campaigns to which the prospect has responded, and the product they are likely to purchase.
5. Evaluate: To maintain a good lead generation process, it's important to evaluate leads to refine your lead scoring criteria. Through such analysis of leads, you can make adjustments to your campaigns based on the current needs. This ensures that leads that qualify are given back to marketing for further nurturing.