Companies design a workflow that helps them optimise their sales operations. This specific workflow is referred to as lead management. Lead management helps organisations find new prospects, organise all the information regarding the prospects and assist in maintaining communication with them.
Lead Management has changed over the years. While earlier it was simple and common, it has become all the more complex in the present times. There are multiple touchpoints where customers can connect with the marketer. This complicates the process of managing potential customers.
Effective lead management allows organisations to view bottlenecks in sales and remove them in time. It helps tap opportunities for sales development and enhances customer experience through various mediums. Companies desiring to scale their business need an organized and planned lead management in place.
With the introduction of lead management software, it has become quite easier for companies to manage leads in an organized fashion. Lead management software works diligently to capture leads, nurture them and close the leads. It even helps automate activities, eliminating human intervention and resulting errors.
Identify the Leads
This is the very first step of lead management. If this step is in place, then it guarantees the success of the lead management process. Companies first need to ascertain the potential customers for their products or services. This helps them develop a process to identify the section of the sales process to which the prospects belong.
The marketing team begins with categorizing the types of buyers and their personas. The persona of the buyers is categorized based on their demographics, behaviour and other factors. The marketing team needs to know the location of potential customers, the size of their company, and the industry they belong to, among others it is necessary to understand their problems and requirements for better lead management.
Further, leads are classified on the basis of their behaviour. For instance, the potential customer prefers Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter to obtain certain information or entertainment. It is very crucial to understand the potential customers – the social strata they belong to, the vehicle they own, their reading habits, and internet usage among others to classify them appropriately.
Collect information about the leads
The marketing team needs to figure out the primary point of contact with the potential customer. Creating and tracking content helps generate leads and know their right source. Companies need to design a lead-capture form for generating leads and gathering critical information about them. This information is quite useful in the later stages.
Further, it is possible to add a tracking token to all the links that are shared on the social media accounts of the business. The links can also be added to emails sent to the leads. This helps the marketing team to identify the behaviour of the leads. This can be used for interaction with the clients.
Marketing analytics should be used by the organisation to determine the route people used to visit your website. Their behaviour should be tracked as to which links they click on your website. This information is important to know the types of content leads the potential buyer is looking at. This helps the client in understanding their interests and requirements.
Scoring the Leads
Companies need to determine the potential interests of the leads in the product and services of your portfolio. The demographic information as well as behavioural activities mentioned above help determine the lead score. This information is very important to qualify the leads in the later stages.
The higher the score of the lead, the larger the chances that the lead will convert into a customer. Time sensitivity is crucial over here as lead scores are determined based on the actions of the lead. The score might be reduced when the lead remains inactive for a long period of time. When the lead does not click on the blog posts for some time, the score is reduced as the lead might not be interested in the product at that point in time.
Leads that do not qualify need to go through the stage of lead nurturing again. The marketing team needs to prioritize calls in order to manage time. The scoring scheme for leads depends on a number of factors. Each factor is decided depending on the individual criteria of the business. Companies need to invest some time in deciding the right factors for the lead-scoring process.
Nurture the Leads
The next step is to use the information that has been captured till this stage for identifying different segments of leads. Leads convert at different stages. While some accept the offer like free trials during the middle of the funnel, others take time to convert and get converted only when additional offers are given. Such leads convert at top of the funnel offers.
When leads do not convert into sales, they need to be entered into an apt lead-nurturing campaign. Such leads are still in the research phase or might even be in the awareness phase. They are still trying to understand whether the product is appropriate for them or not.
The marketing team needs to educate the leads and offer valuable content, offers, etc. to them to convert them. The leads need to understand that the product will help them solve the problem that they are trying to resolve.
Proceed your leads to Sales
While passing on the leads to the sales team, ensure that the lead is ready for sales. At times, the lead might be premature and require more convincing. The sales team is generally not able to handle leads that are not ready for sales yet. Lead scoring helps understand whether the leads are ready or not.
It helps understand whether the leads are qualified. Lead passing needs to be done strategically. Lead scoring needs to be done carefully and correctly. Ascertain whether the leads need nurturing for effective scoring. It is the task of the marketing team to offer extensive information on the activity of the leads and their background for the nurturing process.
The Road Ahead
Lead management is not a finite process. It is an on-going process that helps companies fulfill their objectives of growth and expansion. Hence, assigning the task of lead management to a dedicated team helps a lot. Ensure that the team has the right tools and lead management software to obtain results, well within time.