High quality sales leads are the backbone of any thriving tech business, however, there are many definitions as to what a “quality” lead is. For example, should you class any prospect that has shown interest in your business services or products? Or should you wait until they’re further down your sales funnel until they are considered “high quality”?
Sud Kumar, marketing director at digital marketing agency Origin, discusses the key steps that technology businesses should take to generate high quality leads.
In many organisations, marketing teams will generate leads and send them over to their sales teams to close. However, this is not necessarily the best way to boost your business growth, as you may be sending across low quality leads to your sales team, which will mean that they’re wasting their efforts when trying to convert them.
So, what should you be focusing your efforts on?
In reality, the fewer, better quality leads you generate, the better, as this will enable your sales people to really get to know the leads, get under the skin of their problems and build meaningful, working relationships with them that will grow into lasting customer relationships.
Categorising leads the right way…
Leads can be categorised by their position in the sales funnel and their level of interest in your business.
For technology businesses, you’ll be able to look at how your service and product will have an impact on the lead’s organisation. For example, will your tech drastically improve their operations and provide the solution to their problem? This will present an opportunity for you to communicate all the benefits they’ll gain by implementing your technology which will pique their interest and push them further down your sales funnel.
To ensure you categorise your leads in the right way, it’s useful to be aware of the two different types of leads.
- Marketing Qualified Leads (MQL) – this is a prospect that has shown interest in your business by completing an action. This action might be filling in a form on your site, signing up to your marketing updates or downloading a guide or some content from your site. To nurture this lead effectively, you should begin to send them more content that shares your business knowledge. For example, if they’ve downloaded a guide or a “how to” video from your website, have a closer look at the actual topic of that content. This will enable you to identify the types of themes that they are interested in and you can send them more of what they want.
- Sales Qualified Leads (SQLs) – this is a prospect that has shown immediate interest in your offering, or this is a prospect that has passed through the MQL stage, been pushed down your sales funnel and is ready to make a purchase.
Lead generation tips…
Now you understand how to look after and nurture your potential customers that are at different stages within their purchasing journey, it’s time to generate leads.
Below, I’ve identified four of my top lead generation tips.
- Get your sales and marketing teams on the same page
To begin your lead nurturing activity, you must properly align your sales and marketing efforts. To do this, the teams or people responsible for your sales and marketing must work together in unison so that prospects are passed on to sales at the right time or are nurtured further through marketing until they are ready for sales interaction.
- Keep your leads engaged
Once your leads sign up to your marketing updates and communications (once you have their contact details), you must begin to nurture them and feed them more interesting information to keep them engaged. But, don’t just send your prospects information about your business and products, send them a mix of useful industry insights, trends, research, advice and sprinkle in references to your business to position your brand as authoritative and not just focused on sales.
- Create lead questions
To help you categorise your leads effectively, introduce forms on to your website pages to gather information and data about your potential customers. The forms should contain questions to help you learn more about the prospect, identify whereabouts they are in the sales funnel and what content they should be sent next.
- Introduce lead scoring
Lastly, introduce lead scoring into your business activity to rank your leads based on their level of engagement with your brand. This will help you determine if they are the right “fit” for your business, how much time your team should be spending on them and what your next move should be, to enable you to really maximise your lead generation efforts and gain the most return.
To find out how we’ve done this for other technology companies, visit our website www.origingrowth.co.uk/work/loqate.