Swimming in leads? Prioritize them automatically!

When a new lead signs up, StackLead tells you who they are based on an email address. Armed with this data, a sales rep still has to decide that lead’s value. We recently added a score to all the leads we process to help you answer the second question and automatically prioritize inbound leads.

Way back in the day, IBM created the BANT (budget, authority, need, and timeline) framework, which has been pretty much discredited for modern, lean sales. By the time a buyer expresses interest in your product they’re already 57% of the way towards making a buying decision (according to the CEB).

When we think about scoring a lead’s value, there are 3 main criteria:

  1. Coverage – How much do we know about the lead? If the lead doesn’t maintain a social media or other online presence, this could be a fake account.
  2. Profile – Based on external characteristics like company size and role, can we determine the lead’s potential budget and authority?
  3. Activity – How engaged is this lead based on their interactions with your website, marketing material, and free trials? Sales 101 tells us that someone who viewed your pricing page 5 times and read that white paper on ERP systems needs a call NOW.

When a lead first visits your site and fills out an email capture form, you likely don’t know much about them, so we focus on analyzing their coverage and profile. Depending on your business, there are a number of additional factors (more on defining that ideal customer profile in a future post), but it all boils down to answering one question: How valuable is this lead?

We used our research data to divide that question into smaller components for the StackLead score that’s included in our API response. Our algorithm produces the score by answering these questions:

  1. How much do we know about the lead?
    1. Do we have information about their social presence?
    2. Do we know what company they work at?
    3. Do we know their role at that company?
  2. What’s the company’s size?
    1. How many employees does it have? Are they hiring?
    2. What’s the Alexa rank and web traffic at the company’s domain?
  3. How influential is this lead for generating future business?
    1. Are they active on Twitter?
    2. Are they affiliated with any major media channels?
    3. For developers, do they have a Github profile with any prominent open source repos?
  4. Are they in your target area?
    1. Where are they located?
    2. Where is the company’s HQ?
  5. Are they a decision maker in their company?
    1. What department do they work in (Sales, Marketing, Operations, Engineering, UX)?
    2. What seniority level are they (a summer analyst or executive VP)?
  6. What other products have they purchased?
    1. How expensive are they?
    2. Do they use a competitor’s product?

Our initial score considers the size of the business to be the most important metric since that’s often the best predictor of revenue potential. After that, we consider the individual lead’s ability to make a purchase decision. Other metrics like social influence, location, and the web products they use contribute additional points after that. Since having information about a lead is a prerequisite for scoring them, a lead without information available will always score lower than even a weak lead with a little information.

Are you looking for a data-driven way to qualify and prioritize your leads? Give us a shout at team@stacklead.com

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