What is lead scoring, and how can you use it to classify your leads?

What is lead scoring, and how can you use it to classify your leads?

Use this tool to better understand your buyer’s journey.

To create assertive actions, especially in such a dynamic environment as the online world, it is essential to understand concepts in digital marketing, and also learn how to apply them in your business routine.

Among the most commonly used ones, we have lead scoring.

If you have never heard this term before, or still have questions about it, keep on reading! In this post, we will show you how this methodology works and why it is so important to the success of your business.

What is lead scoring?

The lead scoring methodology consists of ranking your leads according to the potential they have to make a purchase.

This score is reached by comparing these users to the profile of the buyer persona created for your business. The more similar these profiles are, the higher the score your lead will have, and consequently, the more prepared they will be to become a customer.

It’s important to highlight that every action taken by a lead must be interpreted as a sign of interest in your product.

Let’s take a look at an example:

A person who visits your website after searching for something on Google is in the initial stage of the buyer’s journey. On the other hand, a user who types in the URL of your website directly in the address bar certainly knows about the solutions you offer.

In a nutshell: lead scoring takes into consideration not only the personal characteristics of the lead, such as age, job, and location, but also the interactions with the brand, such as downloading rich material or subscribing to a newsletter.

After all, the “hottest” lead is the one that, more than sharing a similar profile to the one of your ideal buyer, shows interest and engagement in your products and services.

Why is it important to have a lead scoring?

When you don’t classify your leads, it’s harder for you to understand what they need at that specific moment to move from one stage to the next in the buyer’s journey.

Lead scoring will show you which users are ready to become customers, and which ones are still in need of identifying a problem. This way, you will be more prepared to direct efforts and resources in creating content, email marketing strategies, ads, and remarketing.

Remember: it’s not about a competition in which scores are given randomly, but identifying the moment in which the user is, to offer a solution that really provides value, and, at the same time, strengthening your authority in the market.

How does lead scoring work?

For the lead scoring to work well, it is crucial that the scoring is distributed according to the user’s profile, the actions taken, and your business goals.

For example:

If your store only delivers to one specific state in your country, and the lead is not from this state, this indicates a negative score, as it is less likely that this person will become a customer.

The actions of downloading important content such as ebooks, for instance, may be given high scores, as it shows that that lead shows affinity and interest in what you share.

This score can increase even more if the lead presents a high email open rate, as this information confirms that the lead is learning more about the subject matter.

If you have come this far, you have realized that lead scoring is a complex tactic, but it is also an extremely important part of your strategy. To implement it in your business, you may resort to three different systems, as we will show you below.

1. Manual

Here, the scoring is done manually, usually by someone in the marketing department. This professional is responsible for coming up with the criteria that will be analyzed, defining the number of points, and attributing them to each lead.

Besides taking more time, this process may also be less efficient, since the analysis depends on the perceptions of the person in charge of it.

However, if you are just starting out and you have a small number of contacts, this might be a good option.

2. Semi-automatic

In this format, the information is more organized, since the team responsible for the lead uses spreadsheets and software to insert and analyze data.

However, most of the work still depends on manual labor.

Even though the information is more organized, managing data and identifying qualified leads remains the responsibility of a professional, which makes the process liable to errors.

3. Automatic

Here we have the use of more complex tools, with advanced resources in automation.

There are many different programs available, and each of them has its own characteristics. The most simple ones, for example, rely on a trial and error methodology and give a single score to each lead. The most advanced tools, on the other hand, use previous results in comparisons, and have the advantage of adjusting and defining scores automatically.

It’s important to highlight that the lead scoring tool you choose needs to help you analyze your leads taking two aspects into account: the user’s profile and interest in your brand.

A lead with a high score in one of these aspects, but very low in the other, shouldn’t get the same treatment as a lead with high scores in both.

Every detail relays a different message to your marketing team, and it is essential to rely on a tool that provides a systemic, thorough view.

How to use lead scoring

After the whole process of lead scoring, it’s time to use the scores from the leads to customize your marketing strategy and increase the chances of sales.

It is indispensable to know how to interpret each score to create assertive, efficient actions.

Leads with a low score in both aspects don’t represent people who may become customers, and that’s why investing time and resources to attract them is therefore pointless.

On the other hand, a lead with a profile that is very similar to your buyer persona’s, but still shows little interest in your product needs to be nurtured. In other words, some preparation is needed to strengthen the relationship between the lead and your brand, up to the moment of decision.

Remember that these users have the ideal profile to become customers, they only need a little push to recognize the value you have to offer.

Finally, the leads with a high score in both aspects are ready to purchase! The actions directed at them can focus on selling, as they are feeling safe to make a decision and recognize you as an authority in the subject matter.

A correct analysis of the results of lead scoring and a proper targeting of your communication efforts will lead to excellent business results.

You will stop wasting time with non-qualified leads, increase your productivity and cut down costs. After all, you will know exactly what content to send.

To learn more about what you can do to promote your brand, read our post on 11 ways to attract customers.

See you soon!

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