When it comes to tracking the effectiveness of your marketing activity, nothing gives you more info than a well thought out lead scoring process. Lead scoring helps your sales and marketing departments identify which leads have the potential to be transitioned from marketing qualified leads (MQLs) into sales qualified leads (SQLs).

To make sure you get the most out of lead scoring, you must have the right scoring thresholds, proper syncing with your CRM, effective scoring actions, and buy-in from both your sales and marketing departments.

Two Lead Scoring Strategies

Before creating a proper lead scoring process, it’s important to know the two methods available, explicit and implicit.

Explicit Lead Scoring

With explicit scoring, a marketing team gathers information from potential leads using different types of forms placed on websites or landing pages. These forms may be for newsletter sign-ups, webinar registrations, or gated content. Usually, the information provided for explicit scoring is name, email, company, phone number, and even job title. All of this information can be used for further marketing efforts.

Implicit Lead Scoring

Implicit lead scoring gathers prospect data on an inferred basis. Information that would be considered inferred could be a lead’s IP address, and thus the location at which they are interacting with your marketing. The point of implicit lead scoring is to help track the specific actions a lead might take before they make a purchase or give you enough info to be an explicit lead. You can assign points negative or positive to these actions which will give a lead score that can be used to assess the purchasing consideration stage they are at.

Develop a Lead Scoring Strategy

At MasterSolve, our team uses a hybrid lead scoring strategy, collecting both explicit and implicit information about our potential customers. Our first step was to understand the different levels that contacts pass through during their time in the marketing funnel. Here is the lead level hierarchy (you can think of it as a funnel) that our team uses:

Lead Levels (Prospect, Lead, MQL, SQL) and correlating marketing actions

Once your lead levels have been determined, it is important to understand how you think your prospects should be moved through each level. Many marketing automation platforms have a default points system in place.

Consider all of the actions you are asking your contacts to take while they are in the marketing funnel and how tightly those actions correlate with implicit interest to purchase your products or services. A higher correlation means that more points should be awarded. It can be helpful to meet with your sales leaders to discuss which actions should receive which points. Remember: what is true at one company, or in one industry, may not be true for others.  Here is an example of the lead scoring system that our team put together.Scores assigned to leads based off of actions taken

For more in-depth information on how to perform lead scoring in Sugar Market, check out this page

Make Your Marketing Automation Platform Sync With Your CRM

If you are lucky enough to have a CRM and marketing automation system that sync together directly, this process is easy. 

Step 1: Set Up the Points System in Your Marketing Automation Platform

Within your marketing automation platform, find out where to update the points system and make your updates within the platform. Your contacts will automatically be scored based on how they interact with your marketing materials and web site. 

Step 2: Ensure SQLs Are Sent to Your Sales Team With an Automation Rule

Once a contact hits the predetermined score level necessary to be considered an SQL (for us, it’s 100 points), they need to be automatically passed over to your sales team so that your reps can begin working to close the deal. This is easily done by creating an automation rule in your marketing automation platform. We suggest creating an automation rule that pushes all SQLs into a leads queue in your CRM that is visible to sales reps and sending an automated email notification to the correct sales rep once a new SQL has been created. 

Make sure to have your form submissions also automatically sync into your CRM with specific alerts so the correct person can be notified. 

If your marketing automation platform does not sync to your CRM directly, tools such as Zapier can be used to get the information pushed where it needs to go.

Conclusion

Creating a lead scoring process may seem like quite a challenge, but it can be quite easy once you know what to do.  A strong scoring process makes things much easier for your sales and marketing teams to stay aligned as well as make the most of their time. If your sales team is reaching out to unqualified leads it will cost your business unnecessary time and resources.