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Innovation for marketers by marketers.

A joint Marketo and Reachforce research piece found that businesses are 67% better at closing deals when sales and marketing work together. It is critical for marketing and sales to work together to create best practices, deliver more quality leads, and drive higher-impact deals.

Here are some key tips how to accomplish that:

1. LEAD SCORING

There are a few strategies that enable you to follow up with prospects at precisely the right time, but the one that appeared in both presentations was lead scoring.

Lead scoring is a method of ranking leads for their sales-readiness, agreed upon by both sales and marketing, and it's essential to ensuring that your organization is well aligned. According to MarketingSherpa, 61% of B2B marketers send all leads directly to sales; however, only 27% of those leads will be qualified (aka in that "right time" window). And Gartner reports that up to 70% of sales leads are not properly leveraged or are completely ignored thus wasting marketing programs dollars. This all seems like a waste of everyone's resources--and something that can easily be addressed by implementing lead scoring.

As you implement lead scoring in your marketing automation platform, think about creating metrics based on:

* Demographic or Firmographic Scoring

** This scores your prospects based on information like their job role, job title, technology used, country, industry, etc. The closer the prospect is to your ideal customer profile, the higher the score.

* Asset Scoring

** Align your content to stages of the buying cycle and score each asset accordingly. For example, a top-of-funnel asset might have a lower score than a middle-of-funnel or bottom-of-funnel asset to indicate that the buyer is at the beginning of their buyer's journey and perhaps just becoming aware of your company.

* Behavior Scoring

** This indicates your prospect's readiness to buy. Track data that indicates interest, such as website activity (downloads, page visits), channel participation (PPC, events, inbound calls), and email engagement.

* Interest Scoring

** This ties into behavior scoring, but with a focus on what specific content your prospects are interacting with to determine which products or services your they might be interested in.

2. MQLS

MQL, one of the many marketing acronyms out there (just to start, think: ABM, SQL, BEO ... the list goes on and on). What is an MQL? MQL stands for marketing qualified lead--and represents a prospect who's lead score (see above) adds up to an agreed upon value (at Marketo, we chose 100) with a combination of those multiple values: demographic/firmographic "fit" score, engagement score, and buying intent.

Once a prospect hits this threshold, it's time to send this lead over to sales because they are considered warm and ready to be called.

* Did you receive the email with the links you were looking for?

* What resonated with you from this content that made you want to check it out?

* What happened recently that made this content more relevant/important to you?

After sales follows up on the MQL, they can then turn it into an SQL (yes, another acronym that I'll define in the next section).

3. SQLS

You probably figured out from MQL what an SQL is--and you're right! SQL = sales qualified lead. And what exactly does that mean? A SQL is a lead that has been accepted by an Account Executive after demonstrating BANT criteria:

* Budget: Do they have the money to purchase your product or service?

* Authority: Are they a decision maker or can they influence the decision maker?

* Need: Does your product or service fulfill their needs?

* Time: What is their time frame for evaluating and purchasing your product or service?

Ultimately, SQLs are the people that sales think has a HIGH potential to actually purchase the product. And these clearly are the ones you want to be following up with at the right time!

CONCLUSION

The moral of the story? Teamwork makes the dream work! SiriusDecisions reports that companies with aligned sales and marketing teams achieve up to 19% faster growth and 15% higher profitability. Don't you want to be part of these success statistics?

Marketo provides a complete marketing automation software solution that is powerful and easy to use for fast-growing small companies and global enterprises alike. Built for marketers, by marketers, Marketo is designed to allow companies to launch their first campaign in days and scale to meet the needs of the most complex global enterprise. The solution delivers everything a marketer needs to deliver more sales leads with less work, including inbound marketing, lead management, social marketing, event management, instant CRM integration, sales dashboards, and marketing ROI reporting and analytics--all in one place.

Learn more at www.marketo.com
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Title Annotation:Sponsored Content
Publication:CRM Magazine
Date:Jun 1, 2016
Words:771
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