HubSpot offers an amazing set of tools. But just like a table saw, it will only be as effective as you allow it to be. In other words, the end result is going to depend heavily on the skill of the user. Many people seem to think that HubSpot is only useful for marketers. Inbound marketing works best when your web assets line up with your marketing assets and your sales process, so HubSpot offers a wide range of tools in all of these areas. It seems like most of the people I speak with in the sales cycle are just scratching the surface of what their portal can do, especially when it comes to evaluating leads. Remember, not all leads are created equal, and just because someone didn't convert at the bottom of the funnel doesn't mean they aren't qualified. This is why it is extremely helpful to be able to quickly and clearly see which of your non-BOFU leads is ready to be contacted.
Master Your Toolset
As a sales person, HubSpot provides an amazing set of tools. In addition to always having full digital records of my activities with each lead, HubSpot makes it easy to sift through the gravel and identify those that are actually worth your time. As any of you who have spent a good amount of time in HubSpot building and promoting content to help generate leads already knows, inbound marketing will help increase not only your production of sales qualified leads but also non-qualified leads. In fact, you will most likely produce a ton more of the non-qualified leads. HubSpot says that on average less than 25% of new leads are ready to buy, but that is okay. That is why we nurture contacts through the marketing funnel.
BOFU Leads Aren’t the Only Ones Worth Your Time
Now every sales person loves getting red hot leads dumped into their lap, but sooner or later you are going to run through that list. Then you are faced with a question. Do you kick your feet up on the desk and simply wait for another BOFU lead to come through, or do you use the tools at your disposal to figure out who to contact next. Sure you can always try other outbound means of advertisement. The Search Engine Journal determined that SEO leads have a 14.6% close rate, while outbound leads (such as direct mail and print advertising) have a 1.7% close rate. So since you have better odds to close those people already being tracked in HubSpot, why not dig in further to your current database of leads. After all, just because a lead hasn’t converted at the bottom of the marketing funnel doesn’t mean they aren’t ready to be contacted. However, just because they are a lead doesn’t mean they are. So how can you sift through the rest of the leads to know which ones are more qualified? Lead scoring.
Don't Sort The Gravel
Simply put, lead scoring allows you to better determine the quality of a lead by applying a numerical score based both on explicit information and implicit information. Explicit scoring refers to giving points based directly on the information provided by the lead, such as fields filled out on a form. Implicit scoring is more complicated. It is based on evaluating the digital behavior of the lead. “A few examples of the behaviors tracked are most visited pages, emails opens, content downloaded and much more. When you score and combine the efforts of these two elements, you gain a clear picture of the leads that are sales ready” (Adhere.)
The primary thing to remember when setting up your lead scoring is to focus on the importance of each identified behavior. Has the lead explored a product page, or have they been viewing a case study multiple times? Both of these situations indicate the lead is interested, but the individual spending time on your case study probably deserves the call first. I should note, however, that much like the other aspects of your digital marketing campaign, lead scoring will work best when it is constantly evaluated and tweaked. I have encountered many clients that want to set this up and forget it, much like how they prefer to handle their workflows. But the beauty of inbound marketing and particularly HubSpot is we can see analytics on every marketing action, thus we should be paying attention to this information and making informed decisions on how to improve the next action.
My brilliant colleague Kelley Wrede summed it up best when she said that manual lead scoring takes some time and commitment to set up on the front-end, but if the process is rushed through, it defeats the purpose of the tool. It is important to be thorough in your data collection and your strategy behind the way you set up your lead scoring system. If done well, lead scoring should improve sales efficiency and effectiveness, result in smarter, cost-efficient marketing, and create closer alignment between marketing and sales.
If you are interested in setting up lead scoring in your HubSpot portal, feel free to reach out to me at any time, and I’d be happy to walk you through it. Additionally, you can follow these step-by-step directions provided by HubSpot, and you should be well on your way.