We all need to understand 4 things right away:
- Not every lead is sales-ready
- This means that your sales team just wasted time in finding a needle in a hay stack
- If your sales team aim at increasing your quality leads constantly (and focus only on that), your team will find more customers but also more and more stacks of hay
- By doing this, you are making them less effective and productive
Each one of your lead is at a different stage of customer journey and you need to know it before your teams take ANY action.
Understanding Sales Qualified Lead is easier, if you know what Marketing Qualified Lead is. If you donâ€™t, you need to read this first and then come back to SQL.
Sales Qualified Lead is vetted by both the marketing and the sales team. It has moved from being a Marketing Qualified Lead to a Sales Qualified Lead and indicates that the teams consider the lead ready for the next step in the sales funnel i.e. direct sales.
The companies generally follow a lead scoring metrics to lay out guidelines for defining Marketing Qualified Lead and Sales Qualified Lead. This helps the marketing team to hand over the lead to sales team on the lead attaining certain scores.
It is as simple as watering a plant after sowing the seeds (Marketing qualified lead to Sales Qualified Lead journey) before it could give you fruits (by becoming a customer).
You can know more about the MQL processes here.
Must Read: MQL to SQL conversion rate
What is the basic difference between MQL and SQL?
The readiness to buy differentiate SQL from MQL. While your marketing team has to still nurture Marketing Qualified Lead and track their growing interest, Sales Qualified Lead is already ready to receive a sales calls.
SQLs are at a stage where they are weighing their options and could turn into your customers within the next 24 hours if provided with right incentives and information.
But how do we know if your leads are Sales Qualified Leads?
Simple, we analyze their behavior closely.
- Not every lead is sales-ready
- Number of page views and the time spent on your web page
- The specific page they have spent their time on
- The downloadable material they have accessed
- How many times have they opened your e-mails or clicked on CTAs
- Returning to your website time and again
We also help you identify a Sales Qualified Lead by establishing a Lead Score System (LSS) – numerical sales qualified lead criteria which help to define Sales Qualified Leads thereby indicating the stage at which marketing hands it over to sales. LSS is a scoring system which assigns a value to each step of progress.
Why choose ONLY B2B?
- We use BANT systems (Budget, Authority, Needs, Timeline) when qualifying leads. Basically, we see
- Does your prospect have the budget to buy?
- Does your prospect have the authority to buy?
- Does your prospect have a need for your product/services?
- When is your prospect looking to buy?
- We also use several other behavior signals to score leads. For example, responding to e-mails, registering for a webinar, revisiting your page several times etc.
- We deliver 100% High Quality Leads using multiple Lead Generation techniques.
- We can also help your sales team in incentivizing SQLs to buy right away
We also ensure that –
The most legitimate leads are handed over to the sales. After all, only 25% leads are legitimate according to Gleanster
We nurture the leads carefully and ensure that they convert into sales. According to VentureBeat, Buyers can be as much as 90%of the way through buying process before they reach out to the salesperson which make nurturing all the more important
We follow up regularly with the leads because we know that a lead requires 8- 10 marketing-driven â€œtouchesâ€ to convert from the top of the funnel into a paying customer.
Once your lead enters into the Sales Qualified Lead stage, we ensure conversion by using a few strategies like
- Prepping work: A journey from being a visitor to SQL weaves a story around their needs. We use it to make a compelling and personalized marketing move
- Seek to understand: We make a conversation with the leads so they know we aim to solve a problem and not just sell
- Follow up: This is a very important step. Sometimes people are busy or forget about your calls. A Harvard Business Review found that 71% of qualified leads are never followed up with.
Vikas Bhatt is the Co-Founder of ONLY B2B, a premium B2B lead generation company that specializes in helping businesses achieve their growth objectives through targeted marketing & sales campaigns. With 10+ years of experience in the industry, Vikas has a deep understanding of the challenges faced by businesses today and has developed a unique approach to lead generation that has helped clients across a range of industries around the globe. As a thought leader in the B2B marketing community, ONLY B2B specializes in demand generation, content syndication, database services and more.