Lead Scoring with Marketing Automation Systems

For nurturing the right prospects

Marketing automation changed the way most marketers approach campaigns and the way companies view buyers. Now that it is easier to dissect an emailing list and target just the right people, companies can turn even the smallest leads into prospective buyers.

Previously, we discussed the concept of lead scoring. Now let’s add marketing automation into the mix and see how the game changes.

Keep reading to find out how you can start lead scoring with marketing automation.

How does marketing automation relate to lead scoring?

Think about what makes companies like Amazon so successful. Other than having something for virtually every niche market, Amazon is renowned for their marketing and retargeting campaigns. They track what their customers are searching for, and based on those results, they create finely tailored ads that nurture buyers and bring them back to the site for purchase, making the experience seem personal for each consumer.

Marketing automation software makes it easy to break down your leads into many different categories and then market directly to those categories while attending to their needs. Using all your website data and contact lists, you too can target solid leads and nurture them through the sales funnel before finally assigning them a sales representative. In short, marketing automation makes lead scoring more efficient and better targeted.

Determining a great score

One of the best features of marketing automation is its ability to track and report the effectiveness of your marketing endeavours. For social media posts, you can easily see how many people responded by linking, sharing or commenting on a post, and for email, marketing automation will report how many people opened your email and clicked through to the landing page.

This is why it is so important for you to determine exactly what a successful lead scoring model looks like. To do this, call a meeting with your sales people and get them involved in the conversation. As they are the ones to close the final deal, they will be able to tell you which types of leads are more solid than others. Certain activity on social media sites might be more lucrative than other actions, or maybe email campaigns bring in the best leads. From there, you can further prioritise your leads in terms of most likely to buy and less likely to buy.

Now go back and look at buying patterns of your customers and try to map out a buying pattern. How did these leads find you? Did they make first contact? How? How many additional times did you have to engage with them before they were contacted by a sales representative?

With a solid buying pattern and some great profiling from your sales team, you should be able to design a great marketing campaign that will bring the leads rolling in.


Determining intent or interest

The two concepts that many marketers fail to properly understand is the major difference between interest and intent. A buyer with interest is not the same as a buyer with intent, and if you market to the wrong one, you miss out on some great leads.

An interested buyer does not act the same as a buyer with intent. Interest can be expressed when a person reads a blog or downloads white papers, but neither of these actions fully indicate that a person is ready to buy. They might just be looking for more information. What you should be focusing on are people who fill out contact forms or request a free trial period of a product or service.

Views on certain pages of your website could indicate an interested or an intended. While a blog may express interest, views on a pricing page could express intent. These viewers might be worth retargeting at the very least.

Build the perfect buyer

More than likely, your email contact list is long and complicated. You might have some contacts that cross into multiple demographics, and it may be confusing to figure which ad should go to which buyer.

The right leads will attract the right buyer so it is important to start defining your demographic if you want to determine the right kind of lead. Ask yourself a few of these questions:

  •    Who is actually buying your product or service?
  •    Which industries are interested or need your company?
  •    Can big and small businesses use your product or service?
  •    Can only certain businesses in certain areas use your product or service?
  •    Who is the person within the company that will actually purchase your product or service?

You might find that you have multiple demographics. That is okay. Some buyers might straddle the lines between different demographics. That is also okay. What is so great about marketing automation is that you can create and save multiple emailing lists. When you want to target a certain demographic, you need only select the list. If you want to target one specific lead, put that contact on two lists and see which one gets a better response.


A/B testing abilities

Even within the same demographic, there are good ways and there are better ways of getting your message across. Split campaigns or A/B testing, meaning creating several versions of the same message in order to better gauge what resonates well with your audience, is great for trying out different methods of advertising, and it challenges your marketing team to think outside the box.

The analytics tools will help you effectively compare both versions of the same add. If one add does better and receives a better click-through-rate, then your team will know to tailor their ads closely to the one with the higher success rate.

Of course, what is working with buyers now might be less effective in the future. You can later use A/B testing to try out multiple marketing angles at once and find new ways to reach your audience.

Though it will take time for you to collect the data needed to run successful, lead-generating campaigns, it is well within your grasp, thanks to marketing automation. Remember, marketing is a marathon, not a sprint. Put in the time, and you’ll surely get the results you’re looking for.

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