Before a client buys from you, they take a few steps from which you can gauge their interest. If a lead visits the site once, they're probably not a potential customer. If they come to you repeatedly, view products or subscribe to your newsletter, they are already more interested in your services. To better capture these leads and not waste your time with those who are not interested, lead scoring will help you.
What is lead scoring
Lead scoring is the process of evaluating leads. It makes it easier and quicker to know how far a lead is on the path to purchase and if it's a good time to pull out all the stops to get it.
It works by assigning points for the online activities that leads perform. The higher the lead's score, the more likely they are to become your customers.
In order to use lead scoring, you need to have:
- A website, use social networks, send a newsletter, use online ads and other online activities where you can track lead activity,
- a system that can collect and work with lead data, usually part of a CRM,
- a strategy for evaluating lead activity, i.e. assessing which activities you want to track as indicators of business potential.
Lead scoring procedure - how to do it?
The point of lead scoring is that it does not track general traffic or readership data. It pairs individual activities with specific leads so you know exactly which user is taking which action.
For example, the activities for which leads are scored could be:
- (repeated) visits to the site,
- Viewing a certain page of the site (for example, with contacts),
- downloading a price list, product list, offer, etc.,
- subscribing to newsletters,
- opening a newsletter inbox,
- responding to social media posts,
- clicking on a PPC ad, etc.
Lead scoring models
To see which activities are important indicators of sales leads, analyse the buying behaviour of your existing customers.
Find out the sequence of steps that engage and persuade clients. Was it a newsletter, a conversation with your business owner, a testimonial or a case study? Did they follow you on social media or click on an ad?
Depending on this, choose the evaluation model you will use for lead scoring. Take inspiration from the following models based on:
- Online behaviour - assesses leads based on whether they come to you by clicking on a PPC ad, for example, or whether they search for you based on the products you offer. It also looks at how leads behave on the web or social media, how they respond to your content.
- Content - differentiates leads based on what content they are viewing on the site, as different parts of the site can have different relevance to the business. When someone visits the homepage, it's less meaningful than when they view products or download a price list.
- Frequency - In this model, points are assigned to a lead based on how often they perform the activity. It makes a difference whether they visit your website or social media profile once a month or several times a day.
- Demographics - assesses leads based on the information you know about them. In addition to name and email, their location may be important to you, i.e. if they operate in the same location as you.
- Negative scoring attributes - you can also assign negative points to leads, which reduces their potential for trades. This way you exclude not only leads who are not interested, but also, for example, leads who are interested in working for your company (who follow your content, but most often browse the careers page).
You can modify and combine the models in different ways to track and evaluate exactly what you need.
Finally, you still need to create a scoring system. Just like specific activities, you determine the number of points you use to rate your leads. The models mentioned above can guide you on how important certain activities are to you, so you can assign them the relevant number of points.
Examples of lead scoring
When you have everything set up, lead scoring can look like this:
Lead A fills out a form on the website (gets 20 points), responds to your LinkedIn post (10 points), and opens and reads your newsletters regularly (15 points). His total score is 45 points.
Conversely, lead B visits your website and only looks at the homepage (5 points), starts following your company profile on LinkedIn (5 points), but doesn't respond to any more posts. He has only 10 points.
Based on lead scoring, you know that lead A has much more business potential because he is more active and interested in your business than lead B.
What is lead scoring for
The main advantage of lead scoring is that you can evaluate which lead to pursue and reach them at the right time. You will also know which ones not to waste your time with.
In general, lead scoring will shorten and streamline your buying process because:
- it allows you to quickly and more accurately determine which lead has the potential to become your customer,
- increasing the number of closed deals,
- it allows you to better predict how your deals will perform, because you can compare the score of the leads with whether you have actually traded them,
- encourages collaboration between the sales and marketing teams, with marketing focusing more on leads that haven't yet shown interest, while handing over leads that are ready to be traded to sales.
Store all lead data clearly in your CRM. You'll keep them together, none will get lost, and you'll know at a glance which stage of the sales cycle a lead is in and what you need to do to move them forward.