1 Designing a Lead Lifecycle in Salesforce A Best Practices White Paper for Response Management from Full Circle CRM Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved.
2 Table of Contents Introduction 4 The Words We Use 4 What is a Lead? 4 Evolving the Lead Lifecycle 5 The New Name 5 The Existing Name 6 Elements of Lifecycle Design 7 Reports Always at the Beginning 7 When Does the New Name Get into Salesforce.com? 7 Data Quality 8 Scoring 8 Response History What Did the Person Do? 9 Facilitating Engagement 10 Nurturing Some Considerations 10 How Do We Know Whom to Nurture? 11 Disqualification Feedback 12 Nurture Time-Outs 12 Returning from Nurture 12 Rep Visibility and Aging 13 Creating Opportunities and Campaign Attribution 13 The Big Picture 14 About Full Circle CRM 14 Addendum A Lead Conversion in Salesforce.com 15 Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com
3 Because a lead, either an Inquiry or a Target, can be represented in salesforce.com as either a Lead or Contact record, organizations should give careful thought to how to engage in a consistent and measurable manner with both types of salesforce.com objects. Introduction Using salesforce.com s CRM solution for marketing is a natural choice, particularly if your Sales organization is running operations with this popular cloud-based CRM application. However, using salesforce.com for marketing has some challenges. At Full Circle CRM, we ve experienced these challenges firsthand and we ve collected a set of best practices in this white paper around designing an effective lead lifecycle to get the most out of your marketing and sales efforts. Just so we re on the same page, we start with a series of definitions, then discuss some challenges we face in marketing and sales operations, and lastly make recommendations for effective use of salesforce.com CRM to get the information you need to drive more revenue. The Words We Use What is a Lead? The term lead (lower case) has many definitions among organizations and even within the same organization. For the purpose of this white paper, a lead is a set of information about an individual that represents a possible selling opportunity. In this context, a lead lifecycle represents the recurring selling opportunities to an individual over their life time. In salesforce.com a Lead (upper case) is an object where an individual s personal and company data is stored in a single record. This Lead record can be converted into as many as three objects: an Account, a Contact, or an Opportunity. Conversion typically occurs when a salesforce.com user qualifies the lead in some manner such as identifying a selling opportunity or detecting that the person is already part of a target or strategic account. After conversion this individual s data does not show up as a salesforce.com Lead record again unless a duplicate is created. For more information on the Lead conversion process please see Addendum A of this document. For the purpose of our lifecycle discussion we ll think of a lead as a person with whom we are going to engage with for qualification. A lead generated by a marketing program is often called an Inquiry because the person exhibited some behavior representing a hand-raise indicating interest. A lead generated by a sales program is often called a Target because it is usually a cold name with which a Sales representative is initiating contact. Because a lead, either an Inquiry or a Target, can be represented in salesforce.com as either a Lead or Contact record, organizations should give careful thought to how to engage in a consistent and measurable manner with both types of salesforce.com objects. 4 Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved.
4 Much of the following paper is dedicated to discussing how we recommend managing Leads and Contacts in the early stages of the revenue funnel. We will refer to this process of managing Leads and Contacts in salesforce.com as Response Management. Evolving the Lead Lifecycle Central to Response Management is the design of your lead lifecycle system. First and foremost, it is important to move beyond the traditional lead-centric linear model to a circular, lifecycle model where you are engaging with all responses in salesforce.com irrespective of whether the person is represented as a Lead or Contact. A circular model reflects your true engagement patterns with people in your database over time. See Figure 1. First and foremost, it is important to move beyond the traditional lead-centric linear model to a circular, lifecycle model where you are engaging with all responses in salesforce.com irrespective of whether the person is represented as a Lead or Contact. Figure 1. The traditional linear funnel vs. today s response management lifecycle. The New Name All records relating to an individual (a Lead or Contact record in salesforce.com) are subject to a lifecycle within the salesforce.com database. Initially an individual s information is new to us, and flows into salesforce.com as a new Lead record either immediately such as through a Web-2-Lead form, or after the lead is qualified and scored through a marketing automation system. Sales representatives then engage with the individual and qualify the person s sales readiness. The individual is then either considered sales qualified and converted to an Account, Contact, or Opportunity, or is disqualified and remains a Lead record. Those disqualified Lead records can be categorized into two basic buckets: 1) people you want to stay in touch with and 2) people you never want Sales to engage with again, such as competitors, individuals who will never have a need for your product, or records with bad data. Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com
5 Your lifecycle design should address how to re-engage with individuals after this initial engagement, whether they remain a Lead record or are now a Contact record. Your initial sales engagement with an individual is a clear progression. Even if you mature them through nurturing programs prior to the initial sales engagement, at some point the leads are subject to qualification or disqualification. Because the lead qualification model for new names is very linear, simple, and easy to track, many organizations become lead-centric with both their marketing and qualification team metrics. This model encourages a false emphasis on new names rather than looking at engagement volume across the whole database. Your lifecycle design should address how to re-engage with individuals after this initial engagement, whether they remain a Lead record or are now a Contact record. The Existing Name To ensure you don t lose sight of the lead after your initial follow up, we recommend you define rules of engagement for existing names in salesforce.com. Once the initial name has been generated, the person is part of our lifecycle eco-system where you will continue to communicate with them in hopes that at some future date you can engage them in a selling opportunity. This individual s record can exist as a Lead or a Contact in salesforce.com. However, this is where we typically run in to problems. The lead conversion model is very linear and easy to monitor because a Lead is created, assigned to a rep if subject to qualification, and converted if considered sales qualified. A Contact, however, typically does not have a status field and cannot be converted, or even qualified in the same sense that a Lead can. Additionally, Lead engagement can be managed through assignments, where only actionable records are assigned to a Sales representative for follow up, so you can easily see what a sales representative owns and what records they still need to engage with and disposition. In contrast, a Contact record is always owned by a sales representative, so not only are notifications less effective, there is little visibility into required follow-up or aging within the Contact database. These two factors alone create such a hurdle for Sales development managers to measure and compensate their teams that they tend to only assign and work Lead records, leaving the Contact database to the account representative to handle. Unfortunately, the account representatives that own contacts are usually less likely to follow up on a response notification because they are often focused on closing open opportunities and achieving quota. This lack of visibility on follow up within the Contact database usually leaves money on the table. 6 Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved.
6 Elements of Lifecycle Design Reports Always at the Beginning Before engaging in a lifecycle design, be sure to identify which reports management and operations require in order to understand the health of the business: These reports will be critical to your report design considerations. Be sure to get a concise list of reports and definitions before beginning this process. When Does the New Name Get into Salesforce.com? One of the first considerations for life cycle designs is to determine where the new name should reside: in a marketing automation system, in salesforce.com or both. Some organizations choose to keep a new name in their marketing automation database until it reaches a qualification level for engagement. This may be appropriate in the case, for example, where an organization has a free or open-source version of their product and the organization is generating a very high-volume of low quality leads. If you choose to keep the new name in the marketing automation system, you may lose some critical metrics: 1. You will not capture the date the name was created unless you use a custom field. The Create Date in salesforce.com will not accurately reflect the date you generated this name. Instead, Create Date will reflect the date the name was synchronized to salesforce.com from your marketing automation system. One of the first considerations for life cycle designs is to determine where the new name should reside: in a marketing automation system, in salesforce.com or both. 2. You will not capture the complete campaign history in salesforce.com. Any marketing campaigns the individual responded to prior to its creation in salesforce.com will not be reflected in salesforce.com. Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com
7 Data Quality Salesforce.com CRM is designed to give you a complete picture of your engagement with an individual when data quality is good. Duplicate Leads or Contacts in salesforce.com, is a common source of dirty data. We recommend that you leverage a system that de-duplicates your data before it gets into salesforce.com. Salesforce.com CRM is designed to give you a complete picture of your engagement with an individual when data quality is good. Marketing automation tools typically de-duplicate based on address. Other third party tools such as CRM Fusion and RingLead can facilitate de-duplication, and CRM Fusion s PeopleImport tool is good for imports that do not necessarily match on -only criteria. Be sure to train your reps to always check for a duplicate before engaging with a record and what steps to take if a duplicate is found. Reps should know which records and fields take precedence and how to merge leads into duplicate contacts. Scoring Another consideration for lifecycle design is scoring. You can score leads typically in two usually has two components: demographic information (what we know about them, and how well that fits our customer profile) and activity information (what they did). However you choose to score, you will want to keep in mind that many scoring systems are progressive. These systems keep incrementing over time. In other words, at the time of scoring they evaluate all of the scoring criteria so that the score is cumulative. In a lifecycle system you will want to think about scoring as a mechanism to promote a person to sales engagement. When thinking about a person that Sales has already person s activity score at minimum should be reset on disqualification so that the individual could be promoted again for engagement. A person s demographic score should either be disregarded after initial engagement, or deprecated so there are additional opportunities to promote back up after initial disqualification. In the latter, the individual would reach the engagement threshold sooner if their demographic score is higher. See Figure 2 for an example. 8 Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved.
8 Figure 2. Example of a scoring cycle. In this example, scores increment as an individual responds to campaigns and Sales engages with the prospect at a threshold score of 100. When disqualified, the score is reset to 0 and then it resumes incrementing after a nurture timeout period. This scoring model supports an iterative nurture and qualification cycle. Response History What Did the Person Do? You ll want to think about what meaningful information you want to store in salesforce.com that allows Sales representatives to understand what a person did. Keep in mind that you don t want to clutter the application with every marketing touchpoint. Typically a Sales representative doesn t want to see 20 outgoing campaigns. Instead, they want to understand what forms were submitted and what key assets a prospect engaged with. The salesforce.com Campaign object is an excellent way to track user responses because it supports both Lead and Contact records. Usually a rep will want to understand what action is prompting follow up and what additional activity the prospect has engaged with. For example, a rep may follow up with all live Webinar attendees, but since the Webinar some individuals may have downloaded a whitepaper or participated in a free trial. See Figure 3 (next page). You ll want to think about what meaningful information you want to store in salesforce.com that allows Sales representatives to understand what a person did. Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com
9 Figure 3. This campaign history example from Full Circle CRM Response Management shows individual actions over time. In September, respondant is a net new name when he or she responds to a Banner ad promoting a compliance white paper. An initial score is set to 25. The response status is set to Resolved No Action Required because the respondant s score was below the 100 threshold. Then he or she responds to a second and third campaign. After the response to the 30 day trial, the score reaches the threshold score of 100 which made them a marketing qualified response or qualified target (MQR/QT), and the response status is set to Open Not Contacted. This campaign is the campaign which tipped the individual to a sales engagement, becomes the active response that Sales works on, and the campaign is credited as the tipping point campaign for any subsequent revenue attribution. When the individual downloads the mobile security campaign, the score is incremented to 125 and the response status is set to Resolved Already Engaged. Facilitating Engagement You may also consider providing Sales reps with additional information they can use in following up on a response. Making it easy to see the offer, and the recommended follow up facilitates sales and improves communication between Sales and Marketing. Nurturing Some Considerations There are two points in the response lifecycle for nurturing activities: 1. When the name is new. You may wish to nurture before you send the lead to Sales if your response volume is high and the source of the names is low quality. 2. After initial engagement whether disqualified, or sold to. 10 Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved.
10 How Do We Know Whom to Nurture? You will want clear ways to understand who is eligible for nurture activities. Many organizations prefer not to nurture prospects that Sales representatives are actively engaged with either in the qualification or selling process. Avoiding nurture with engaged prospects is typically managed by looking at the status of the record in salesforce.com. For example, for Lead records you can assess the Lead status or Lead owner field. On the other hand, understanding the current engagement with Contacts will require creating and maintaining a process around a custom Contact status field that indicates your engagement level with the company in general. In addition, you may wish to exclude current customers from promotions for products they already own and instead target them for up-sell, cross-sell, or renewal campaigns. Make sure your data in salesforce.com supports this type of segmentation and that your marketing automation system is capable of supporting these complex nurturing requirements. See Figure 4 for an example. Many organizations prefer not to nurture prospects that Sales representatives are actively engaged with either in the qualification or selling process. Figure 4. A segment of a drip nurture program. When a lead has been disqualified, it enters the drip program. There is a pause in contacting the Contacts and the list is filtered by several key criteria prior to sending the first . Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com
11 Disqualification Feedback Nurture Time-out is a mechanism that facilitates a forced time-out after a Sales representative has completed a sale or disqualified the Lead or Contact. In the lifecycle design, we recommend adding the ability for Sales representatives to give feedback on why an engagement was disqualified. Ideally this is in picklists to facilitate reporting. Disqualification should fall into 2 high level categories: those you will continue to nurture and those you will not engage with again (Junk, Bad Name, Competitor etc.). You can use disqualification feedback for refining demographic and activity-based scores. Nurture Time-Outs Nurture Time-out is a mechanism that facilitates a forced time-out after a Sales representative has completed a sale or disqualified the Lead or Contact. Nurture time-out inserts a wait time and prevents a name from returning the next day or next week to a sales representative when that person engages in a qualified activity. Below are a couple of concepts to think about when implementing Nurture Time-outs: 1. Determine if you want time-outs how long they should be and if there should be different time-out criteria depending on the disqualification reason. 2. Ensure that certain behaviors will bypass time-outs for example, a contact form from the Website should always drive engagement even if the person is in a Nurture Time-out. Returning from Nurture Salesforce.com Leads and Contacts are, by default, in a nurture state prior to sales engagement. This is true whether the name is new or existing or whether it s a Lead or Contact record. You will want to consider who owns Leads and Contacts when the record is in a nurture state. Leads in nurture state can be owned by a Nurture Queue or can be set to a status that Sales representatives ignore. Queue ownership is not possible with salesforce.com Contact records so they must remain owned by a salesforce.com user. Be sure to define how a record returns to a Sales representative from a nurture state, and what types of notification and visibility will support engagement. As a Lead or Contact, returning from nurture state can involve an ownership change, notification or status update or a combination of all three. Be sure Sales representatives understand that these records are just as valuable as a new name is so that they follow up on all records requiring engagement not just on the new names. 12 Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved.
12 If you are re-assigning Leads and Contacts, be sure you are clear on who owns a record. For example, if a Sales representative previously engaged with this record, does it have Rep Visibility and Aging You will want to ensure that your system can do the following across Lead and Contact records in salesforce.com: 1. Assign or notify rep that they should engage 2. Have clear visibility in-to rep follow-up and response aging. Sometimes organizations resort to creating tasks on Leads and Contacts to gain this type of visibility. Depending on the volume, this may not work well because it obstructs a Sales representative s ability to manage their schedule. Be sure to get Sales to agree to auto-task creation before doing so. Creating Opportunities and Campaign Attribution If you want to attribute revenue to Campaigns in salesforce.com you ll want to be aware of how the primary Campaign is associated with the Opportunity. It is associated under two conditions: 1. During Lead conversion the most recent campaign touch is attributed When a salesforce.com user creates an Opportunity from the left-sidebar Create New drop down, from Quick Create, from an Account, or from the Opportunities tab, salesforce.com does not associate these Opportunities with a Campaign and no revenue from these Opportunities will be attributed to any Campaign. 2. If the Opportunity is created from the Opportunity related list on the Contact record, then the most recent campaign touch is attributed However, when a salesforce.com user creates an Opportunity from the left-sidebar Create New drop down, from Quick Create, from an Account, or from the Opportunities tab, salesforce.com does not associate these Opportunities with a Campaign and no revenue from these Opportunities will be attributed to any Campaign. If you clone an Opportunity the primary Campaign associated with the original Opportunity will persist which may not be the correct attribution. Consider whether or not to allow Sales representatives to clone Opportunities. In addition, consider how you want to manage campaign attribution for system-generated Opportunities, if you have them. Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com
13 Keep in mind that the default behavior in salesforce.com, when associating a Campaign to an Opportunity, is to attribute the most recent Campaign, which is not necessarily a response from your prospect. For example, the most recent Campaign could have been an outbound Campaign that was never opened by the recipient. You may want to consider using Campaigns only for inbound responses. The Big Picture In this paper we ve described some challenges and recommendations for managing the responses to all your campaigns whether they originate from Marketing or Sales activities. If you consider all of these elements in your lifecycle design for Response Management, you will be able to achieve the following: leads and contacts revenue opportunities All of these results can only improve Sales and Marketing operations, increasing revenue and margins all along the way. 14 Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved.
14 Addendum A Lead Conversion in Salesforce.com A Lead contains information about a person and their company. During conversion a Lead can be converted into as many as three records: a new Account, a new Contact and a new Opportunity. Field values previously stored within the Lead record will be transferred to the new records you create. For example, company information on a Lead record will now be on the new Account record you created. During conversion you can associate a Lead to an existing Account and even an existing Contact. In fact, if you have a duplicate Lead and Contact, the only way to merge those records is to convert the Lead to that existing Contact. Creating an Opportunity during conversion is optional but if you know there is a selling opportunity, it is best to create it during conversion. The decision to convert a Lead will depend on your company s criteria for conversion typically at the point of qualification as defined by your company. When a Lead is converted it is no longer available for editing or viewing. However, keep in mind that you can access converted Lead information through reports. Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Full Circle CRM FullCircleCRM.com
15 About Full Circle CRM Full Circle CRM gives salesforce.com marketing users a complete Marketing Performance Management solution that answers all your marketing questions in one place and helps you drive more revenue from every campaign with best-practice response lifecycle management. The cloud-based product is built 100% on the Salesforce Platform and is compatible with leading marketing automation solutions. All marketing data is in salesforce.com and so are the answers. Founded by former salesforce.com executives, product managers, and marketing automation specialists the Full Circle CRM team knows what it takes to run a successful marketing organization. Our team is passionate about giving all marketers the answers they need to plan with confidence and grow revenue. Learn more at 3 Waters Park Drive, Suite 120 San Mateo, CA FullCircleCRM.com Copyright 2015, Full Circle CRM, Inc., All Rights Reserved.
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