Too many leads is a good problem to have. But when businesses start generating leads faster than they process them, they need a game plan for managing and prioritizing those opportunities. In other words, it's necessary to have a method of lead scoring to identify the prospects that will most likely turn into conversions.
Most small businesses can employ a lead scoring method to direct their sales teams, even on a limited budget and resources. Just understand where your most valuable audience lies, what data can predict a sale and how much you can invest into the analytics side of this strategy.
How It Works
Companies use a range of calculation methods to score and rank leads. Many data points can be used and not every one is relevant to every brand. Typically, companies score leads based on the performance they've seen from leads in the past. If your company has especially high conversion rates among 35-to-54-year-old prospects, for example, this demographic will get earlier attention than younger or older demographics.
If you don't have much historical data to work with, you can go off what you expect to see from your clientele. Based on continued performance, adjust your lead scoring metrics accordingly.
Finding the Right Data
If you're having sales staff do this lead scoring on their own, the data used will be limited, often reduced to a few of the most telling metrics.
There are several places to pull this data from that support lead scoring. According to HubSpot, basic demographic information is the logical place to start, and it's often useful. Distinguish between B2B and B2C when scoring leads — your company likely caters primarily to one or the other.
Other smaller metrics can include online engagement, as well as activity and engagement through social media and email. These will likely only be valuable if you opt for an analytics solution to score.
Simple Math vs. Analytics
When creating a standard method for evaluating and scoring leads, commit to a consistent calculation used to score and compare leads. There are typically two ways to do this. One option is to come up with a simple calculation that your staff can handle on their own. A basic example would be calculating lead-to-conversion rates, or your team choosing specific data points that are reflective of success.
The second option may offer more insight and more reliable scores, although it could come with paying for an analytics solution. For small businesses with a limited set of leads, free access to certain analytics software may be possible. Otherwise, expect a nominal cost.
With a strong method for scoring leads in place, your company can bring in new leads while prioritizing high-value opportunities and optimizing sales efforts.