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Lead Scoring 101: What is it and Why is it Important?

Lead Scoring 101: What is it and Why is it Important?

Chetna Sabharwal
Chetna Sabharwal
September 22, 2022
5 min read

Have you ever dated an emotionally unavailable person? They keep leading you on and on, and yet you never understand where you stand with them. There’s no stability. No assurance that they’d stick around. 

That’s your company without lead scoring. 

Now we can’t calculate situationship to relationship conversion rate, can we? But you can save your time by calculating the sales readiness of your target audience.

No more leading on, nuh uh!

But how do you recognize who from your audience will become a prospective customer and who's just there to window shop their way? With lead scoring, your sales team can rank each lead from a window shopper to a serious shopper. With a lead scoring model, you will get better insights on lead generation, convert leads and target the market. 

What is lead scoring?

Lead scoring is the methodology of ranking each lead you generate by giving them points depending on multiple attributes. With an efficient lead scoring system, your marketing and sales team can save time, prioritize leads, and convert them into buyers. All this in a short period by analyzing and studying the information submitted by audience personas.

Think of it as categorizing, from a scale of 1 to 100, on leads that are interested and investing in converting into buyers and leads that are not so sure.

What to consider before assigning lead scores?

Stalking data. JK. (Or are we?)

Here’s your two-step approach to prep yourself with the right data before you assign scores to your leads:

  1. Curate buyer personas

Have you ever made a list of qualities you look for in a significant other? What qualities would you want them to have, and how does having them increase your compatibility? Creating a buyer persona is very similar. 

My kind of person.

What are the interests that your perfect buyer should have? Which qualities in your buyer resonate with your products and services? You need to include all these in your ideal customer profile, a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer. 

  1. Flesh out attributes & assign point values

Now that your buyer personas are ready, you need to choose which attribute will hold how much value and, in turn, how many points. 

You can split lead scoring criteria into two categories - demographic information and behavioral information. 

Your demographic information should have intel on your buyer's location, age, company size, company information, industry, department, and job title/seniority. 

Whereas behavioral information should include online behavior to understand the buyer's interests and intel on lead interaction with your company, such as email subscription, email opens, web page visits, form submissions, content download, webinar registration and social media engagement. Here's your chance to go Joe Goldberg on your buyer and stalk their activity.

Since not all criteria could be scored equally, you get to decide which criteria should have how many points based on the conversion rate of each attribute. For example, leads that visit your web page score two points, whereas leads that download white paper score 25 points. By following this approach, you can recognize and identify quality leads.

How to know what is essential?

There’s no lack of data, and you know it. Your CRM is populated with engagement activity data points; all you need is a way to weed through it so that you can rank and score leads.

Instead of feeling overwhelmed with the abundance of data and which one to prioritize for lead generation, here's what we suggest:

Communicate with your sales team

Your sales reps are on the ground that has practical knowledge of which leads became customers and which didn't. Communicate with your sales team to understand which marketing approach works best to increase conversion rates. This will help you assign accurate point values to attributes and focus on doing more of what makes the conversions happen. You can get your marketing team and your sales team to collaborate together. Teamwork makes the dream work 💪

Go get your dream team together!

Talk to your customers

Your customers know what motivated them to buy your products and services and are the best source for sales conversion. Reach out to your customers, and ask them what had been the driving factor that got them interested in your products and services. Conduct interviews for feedback, and do ensure that you interview different types of customers with long and short sales cycles. Understand the trends and sales funnels of buyers.

Analyze, analyze, analyze, score!

To understand the paths your buyers took to reach the conversion and how your marketing efforts influenced their decision-making, you should consider running an attribution report. Review the performance and analytics of your marketing efforts to identify the various touch points that lead to conversions. Using this information, you will be able to assign scores to your leads based on how they interact with your website and marketing content.

Sales intelligence tools (like Wingman) - that are deeply integrated with your CRM and business platforms - make this process a lot simpler and easier. You get the right tools, sales metrics, and insights to track your buyers’ journey and their interaction - and give them the right scores. This can further help you with lead qualification and nurturing. Here’s a comprehensive list of key sales metrics that you can track to see if your revenue goals are in tandem with your lead generation and qualification. For example, metrics like the MQL-to-SQL ratio can help you test whether your lead scoring process is getting you results.

He shoots, he scores!

Lead scoring: How to calculate? 

There are many ways to calculate a lead score; however, manual scoring is the easiest.

Here’s how you calculate lead scores with manual scoring.  

Step 1: Dig into the past, history has witnessed it all!

Close rates and which attributes lead to conversion matter. This is to understand and find out from historical data which attributes have been successful in converting leads into buyers. Identify how many people and the associated attributes that turned them into qualified leads and eventually customers - based on their activity and compatibility with your ideal customer.

Step 2: Assign the required attributes to your leads 

Identify the top attributes based on your prospects’ engagement with you and set a score between 1-100 for each of these attributes. Assign these scores to individual prospects. These could be prospects in your desired industry, prospects requesting a free trial, or those who have been engaging with your reps over the mail. 

Step 3: Assign point values to the top attributes 

The highest-performing attributes will lead to the most conversions. Come on, think about it, and while you are thinking, don’t forget that data can think the best for you. So, gather the data from your CRM and analytics tools. Based on what attributes convert the most leads, assign them the value points on the scale that suits you the best. 

Your business, your scale, eh? 

Step 4: Value individual attributes for individual leads to weight the final lead score

Once you have assigned the value points to each attribute for each lead, it’s your time to get going! Calculate the final lead score by adding up the point values of all attributes. Set a benchmark that you want to use for filtering the leads that you want to connect with. If you want to contact all of them, you should connect with the highest-scoring leads first. 

Why lead scoring?

Ain’t it nothing but I’m trying…

Lead scoring is not only essential but also efficient, and here are some reasons why we think you should prioritize lead scoring:

  1. Increase sales efficiency

How many times have you walked into a store and been completely overwhelmed by a salesperson? The one who follows you across the store, repeatedly describing their product and asking you to buy it. 

We have all been there, and such tactics have frustrated us, annoyed us, and driven us out of the store.

Run, Homer, run!

The same theory also applies to online sales; you don't want to dump detailed information on someone who has just entered their awareness phase and may or may not be a potential customer. Lead scoring systems help you understand where your prospects have reached in the sales funnel and when they should be nurtured, are sales-ready, and require a sales rep.

  1. Get that bag!

Every lead comes with an associated price, and you can save money and time by identifying ready-to-convert hot leads and leaving the indecisive leads be. Lead scoring can help identify which phase of the buying journey the customer is in and what content is relevant to increase revenue.  Providing the right information or lead nurturing will make your target audience feel heard and seen and, in turn, build trust with them. You don't want to scare prospects by approaching them too soon in the process.

Dolla, dolla bills, y’all!

Lead scoring will help you increase your revenue by categorizing leads based on their sales-readiness levels, recognizing marketing efforts that drive quality leads, and improving time efficiency for your sales and marketing teams.

  1. Increase marketing effectiveness

Lead scoring systems will help you to calculate the ROI of your marketing efforts. It acts as a magnifying glass into channels to identify the marketing content behind high-quality lead conversions. This will help you navigate where you should invest to get the most returns. 

Set the right lead scores with Wingman

Wingman: the Barney to your Ted

Wingman, our sales intelligence platform, is your sales buddy that helps streamline the lead scoring process for you. Not only does it transcribe and analyze your calls, but it also integrates with your CRM to give you accurate sales metrics and insights into your prospects' behavior. With Wingman's intelligence platform, you can find the right leads at the right time and increase the number of leads getting qualified.

Before your FOMO touches the skies because of the important leads you are missing without a lead scoring plan, get a free demo of our sales intelligence platform!

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