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A good lead management strategy should allow your revenue operations teams to meet potential customers where they are while providing the tools and resources to drive them to purchase. However, the buying and selling landscape has undergone dramatic changes in recent years. Marketing and sales teams have moved from guiding to something more like a concierge as buyer journeys have become increasingly self-sufficient. To manage prospects in this new role, teams must be able to anticipate buyer needs and organize personalized interactions. The right technology solutions can help:
Qualify better with lead scoring
Timing is a crucial part of lead management. The right message must be delivered at the right time to be effective. But in today’s nonlinear buyer journey, timing and messaging have become moving targets as potential buyers move back and forth from search to engagement and back again. Tools like lead scoring can take the guesswork out of qualifying leads.
Lead scoring software allows revenue operations to assign point values to buyer behaviors. Top-of-funnel activities have the lowest values and bottom-of-funnel activities have the highest. The higher a prospect’s score, the further along they are in their buying journey. Scores can be categorized into different phases of the buyer’s journey which are then correlated to specific awareness activities. With today’s non-linear buyer’s journey, organizations must use a lead-scoring program that subtracts points and adds them to ensure accuracy.
In addition to tracking lead positions in the sales pipeline, implementing lead scoring can also improve collaboration between marketing and sales teams. Both departments should discuss the sales funnel extensively to agree on the terms and clearly define the behaviors and stages of the buyer’s journey. These discussions can lead to a better understanding of the other’s point of view.
Related: Tips and Tools to Better Manage Lead Flow and Convert Sales
Continue engagement and avoid lost opportunities with automation
Most buyers have extended their time to purchase since the pandemic, so companies have extended their development campaigns in response. Marketing and sales automation software is ideal for keeping prospects engaged while reducing missed opportunities and optimizing marketing workloads.
The software allows employees to set up personalized campaigns that automatically trigger actions when specified conditions are met. Marketers can create complex sequences that involve different triggers such as event attendance or form submission and assign corresponding actions such as email, text or notification for direct outreach. You can even embed personalization efforts into sequences using decision nodes that will perform different actions when a prospect meets specific criteria.
Automation can be an extremely useful tool for retraining leads that aren’t ready to sell. For example, let’s say sales gets a prospect interested in buying, but they can’t buy until later in the year. Instead of sales flagging the lead for further follow-up and having no contact for months, an automation sequence can be set up to send flagged leads back to a nurturing cycle until it’s time to sales to come back. During this time, the prospect receives relevant content and information to keep your brand top of mind until they can make a purchase.
Related: Why Implementing Automation Is Key to Accelerating Sales Today
Personalize marketing efforts by enriching data
McKinsey’s recent “Next in Personalization” report illustrates how important personalization is to consumers and how businesses can benefit from it. But you can’t do much with a name, company, and email address. You need more details, and you can get them with data enrichment.
A data enrichment service takes customer data and complements it by running it through a collection of third-party sources, filling in details like job title, company size, and more. Depending on the data service, you can even specify the data types you are interested in. With enriched data, you can better define your customer segments and better target your marketing and sales efforts. For example, you can create landing pages suitable for companies of a certain size or design email campaigns that address the main concerns of a specific job title. Additionally, your sales and marketing teams can use enriched data to improve personalization efforts in their one-to-one interactions.
Related: Five Actionable Steps to Using Personalization to Increase Sales
Improve collaboration and customer experience with a holistic view of data
The buying journey has only become more complex in the digital age. There are an increasing number of touchpoints and channels to manage, and now multiple handoffs between marketing and sales. But it also means organizations have access to more customer data than ever before – if they can see it, that is.
Imagine having two puzzle pieces but never putting them together to complete the picture. That’s what it’s like to have data silos. Traditionally, companies have separated customer data by department, but this practice prevents them from seeing the entire buyer journey. This segmented view increases the chances of sending irrelevant or repeated information to potential customers and losing them.
Businesses need to invest in technology that can centralize data in a single, accessible location. By doing so, organizations can empower revenue operations like never before with a comprehensive list of customer interactions, including email campaigns, sales calls, form submissions, and more. Knowing more information about a prospect allows teams to better predict what they need next and improve conversion results.
Now that buying and selling are firmly entrenched in the digital realm, they are subject to digital expectations. In a world of search engines, advanced predictive algorithms, and 24/7 availability, that’s a tall order to complete. Luckily, businesses can also use the digital world to their advantage by equipping their sales and marketing teams with the technology needed to effectively manage sales leads.