Automate Lead Scoring and Nurturing in Four Quick Steps

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1 [ Maximize your lead generation efforts ] Automate Lead Scoring and Nurturing in Four Quick Steps A white paper by Pardot

2 Executive Summary Two great truths among B2B marketers are that they are chronically overworked and understaffed Now more than ever, you are forced to justify your marketing budget and prove the ROI of your lead generation campaigns. This means closely monitoring, qualifying, and nurturing your leads before handing them off to sales, in an effort to maximize close rates. In short, your B2B organization has too many marketing tasks and potentially too few marketing bodies to handle them adequately. Technology does, however, allow you to gain tremendous efficiencies by automating two critical components of your B2B lead generation campaigns: lead scoring and nurturing. The four tactical steps to optimizing your marketing program are as follows: Scoring leads based on implicit buying signals Grading leads based on how well they fit your ideal customer profile Setting up autoresponder and drip marketing s Automatically alerting your sales reps when their leads become sales-ready In the four steps that follow, you will see how to maximize your ongoing investment in lead generation, facilitate turning your existing suspects into prospects, and increase the value of your web marketing.

3 Automate Lead Scoring and Nurturing in Four Steps Automate Lead Scoring and Nurturing. Quickly and easily determine who your most active leads are. Handing over leads to sales reps without first gaining some intelligence on them can quickly undermine your lead generation program. Without lead scoring and advanced analytics all leads look relatively similar. You might know a few of the company names, but, generally, you have no way to gauge interest levels without contacting the lead. Automatically scoring leads based on their implicit buying signals (i.e. activity on your site or response to your online marketing) provides hard, objective data in an otherwise subjective sales process. At a glance, you can look at the leads you have generated, quickly prioritize them based on score, and assign for follow up those that are mostly likely to become opportunities. You can also ensure that leads that do not pass a certain scoring threshold are put onto a nurturing track before being assigned to sales reps. As these leads begin to respond to nurturing efforts, and their scores increase, they can be automatically assigned for follow up. The following activities are a few examples of behavior that can be scored either negatively or positively: Form submissions, views, or errors Page views File downloads clicks Site searches

4 Automate Lead Scoring and Nurturing in Four Steps Grade Leads Based on Explicit Factors. Draw a line between the decision makers and the tire kickers. Measuring a lead s interest based on implicit buying signals (i.e. online interactions) is only half the battle. What if your most active lead is an intern and has no influence at all on purchase decisions? If you pass leads onto sales without first grading them, your reps may find themselves on a wild goose chase. A marketer must measure explicit qualities before passing leads onto sales or entering them into nurturing tracks to ensure that they fit the organization s ideal customer profile. Typical explicit parameters include company size, industry, job title, department, and other custom factors that shed light on a prospect s profile. You may give a baseline grade of a C and adjust this up or down based on whether explicit factors match or do not match those of your target customer. Imagine you are a company that sells enterprise software to Fortune 500 CTOs. Six leads convert on your site and show equal implicit buying signals based on their behavior. Three are from Fortune 500 companies and three are from smaller organizations. While your prospects may all have the same score of 300, their grades would be different. Perhaps the Fortune 500 leads would have a grade of A while the other three might all be marked as Ds or Fs. All A leads receive priority over B leads, which in turn receive priority over C leads and so on. You can then use the activity-based scores to further prioritize within each grade tier. This is an extreme example, but it illustrates the importance of explicit grading in addition to implicit scoring.

5 Automate Lead Scoring and Nurturing in Four Steps Automate Lead Nurturing. Elicit a response from your previously non-sales-ready leads. Sales experts often say that 75-80% of leads passed on to sales never have a meaningful conversation with a rep. The reps attempt to make contact several times but ultimately put the lead aside if they are unable get in touch or the prospect does not immediately appear to be promising. The vast majority of your leads will not be sales-ready when they convert on your website or landing page. Rather than immediately hand them off to a sales rep for follow up, ensure that they receive an autoresponder upon conversion and are entered into an automated lead nurturing track. By placing your non-sales ready leads into drip marketing programs, you can then ensure that your message periodically touches them via automated, personalized s. All links and calls to action in your marketing collateral are tracked individually to prospects and your sales reps will be notified as soon as a lead responds. By automating the lead nurturing process you are not only further qualifying your leads, but also freeing up marketing personnel who formerly did this task manually. Autoresponder/Drip examples: Automated upon conversion containing a link to the demo, white paper, or article requested One week automated follow up with a white paper Three week follow up with a second white paper Reconnect message if the lead does not respond to previous drips

6 Automate Lead Scoring and Nurturing in Four Steps Alert Sales Reps of Changes in Buying Signals. Automatically assign leads that reach a certain grade and score threshold. Marketing automation solutions allow you to automatically assign leads to sales reps when they meet certain criteria. For sophisticated organizations that may mean being automatically nurtured until reaching both a specific grade and score threshold. At that point, they are then assigned via a round robin system to the next available sales rep for follow up. This system allows for a timely and equitable distribution of leads and ensures that those that are assigned to the sales department are sales-ready. Rules can also be set up to meet custom business requirements such as sales territories and appropriately assign leads. Some marketing automation systems provide desktop alert systems for real-time sales alerts. Sales reps can also receive daily digest s, notifying them of any prospect registering an online activity within the past 24 hours. These tools help the reps prioritize their days and focus on giving the most attention to the most promising prospects.

7 Conclusion Chronically understaffed B2B organizations can now gain tremendous efficiencies through marketing automation. Your leads will now be better qualified and properly nurtured before they ever reach the sales department, making a successful sale much more likely. Organizations that take advantage of advances in marketing automation technology will be better positioned to act on leads in the most timely and efficient manner possible.

8 [ No Hassle Marketing Automation ] About Pardot Pardot is an on-demand marketing software company that increases sales and maximizes efficiency for companies with complex sales cycles. Pardot offers an industry-leading marketing automation product that manages prospect interactions such as site visits, , forms, and more. The on-demand suite solves the integration challenges faced by B2B marketers today by allowing you to control formerly disparate online and offline marketing tools one central interface. Pardot syncs with select CRM vendors and is available on the salesforce. com App Exchange. Pardot was founded in 2007 and is headquartered in Atlanta, GA. Contact Us Tel: B2B.ROI Tel: Fax: Online: Pardot LLC 950 East Paces Ferry Rd Suite 3300 Atlanta, GA 30326

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