A few thoughts about lead management…..
It always amazes me that whilst many companies spend good money on marketing budgets which in turn results in the creation of Marketing Qualified Leads and opportunities, very few of those companies spend time or have the tools or quality processes in place to manage these leads end to end through the marketing and sales process. Yes of course we see leads allocated from marketing to sales in CRM systems but all too often once handed over the process and discipline become a little woolly, no or little tracking is done to find out what happened to those leads, where they went, whether they closed in won business or if lost why?
At CMO Centre we are particularly keen on lead management through the entire marketing and sales pipeline because it gives us so much information that supports marketing in the future. The key for us is to understand the ratios through the process so that Marketing can be clearly aligned to sales needs. How many MQL’s do marketing need to achieve to deliver the sales revenue target?
Here is a list of some of the key bits of information we think it is really important to capture and use in successful B2B lead management.
- Lead source – what channel did the opportunity come from when it became an MQL
- Lead score – ensuring that the highest quality leads are handed over
- Lead touch points – what/how many marketing touch points – track each touch point that a were used to generate that lead and the time span from lead to close
- Date handed to sales & date sales qualification as a sales qualified lead or sales accepted lead – we know that at the point a prospect is interested that 30-50% of sales go to the vendors that respond fastest.
- Visibility of lead tracking through sales process – this is often tracked by sales but less visible to marketing
- Lead closure – marketing need to understand the win ratios of MQL’s to enable effective marketing
Effective lead management ensures that no leads are wasted or fall through the gaps. If a qualified lead does not move forward through the sales process then it can be given back to marketing to nurture until an opportunity arises again. Just because a lead did not turn into won business this time, it doesn’t mean that there isn’t going to be another opportunity in the future. The knowledge now gained about leads that have been part way through the process can be used very effectively for more personalised marketing.
Through end to end B2B lead management, marketing teams are able to calculate reasonably accurately the average cost per lead and most importantly the return of investment of each marketing activity or marketing as a whole. This information ensures that the marketing budget is allocated where it makes the most impact and delivers the best results for the business.