Align Sales & Marketing with Lead Nurturing

February 5, 2009

Sales complains that the tradeshow, web, or other leads they get are junk. Marketing says that Sales doesn’t call the quality leads they produce. Sound familiar? The basis for this common rift is a poor lead generation, qualification, scoring, and nurturing program. Read this Executive Summary to learn how to qualify, score, and nurture leads that aren’t quite ready to be handed off to sales for closing.

What is Lead Nurturing?

Lead nurturing is all about having consistent and meaningful communication with viable prospects regardless of their timing to buy. It’s not calling up every few months to find out if a prospect is ‘ready to buy yet?’ Lead nurturing about building solid relationships with the right people. Source: B2B Lead Generation Blog

What are the Benefits of Nurturing Leads?

  • Reduction of Missed Opportunities – although many sales reps give up on an opportunity after one unsuccessful sales attempt, the stats show that people who take a vendor demo usually end up buying inside of 18 months.
  • Better Allocation of Resources – by plugging your longer-term opportunities into a lead nurturing program, you can automate a ‘drip-style’ email marketing campaign that provides useful information, webcasts, or other valuable material that will help your prospect make a decision. This is more cost effective than having a sales rep call every 2 months to ‘check-in’.
  • Sales & Marketing Alignment – working together to establish a lead scoring & nurturing system will better qualify opportunities, set proper expectations, and avoid the syndrome of fighting about how ineffective the other side is being. Ensure both Sales and Marketing are equally engaged.

Action Plan:

    1. Start Scoring Leads – use Demand Metric’s Lead Scoring Index to classify and score each incoming lead out of a possible 100 on our index. Be sure to engage a leader in the sales department for this alignment-building project.

  1. Evaluate Nurturing Tools – demand generation platform provider, Eloqua, provides comprehensive lead scoring and nurturing functionality in their tool.
  2. Create a Drip Campaign – write 6 emails that will be sent to prospects monthly, over a 6 month period, to keep your solution top of mind. When a prospect takes action and clicks-through or visits your site, have a sales person follow up on the lead.

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