If there is a kink in your revenue cycle, chances are your lead scoring system isn’t what it could be. When you consider that nearly 75% of leads are not sales ready when they first enter your system, any breaks in your lead scoring system can result in significant lost revenue.
The more streamlined the revenue cycle, the more your B2B marketing dollars and sales efforts will generate returns. But if you’re not getting the performance from your revenue machine that you expect, check out these 4 symptoms of a broken lead scoring system:
1. Sales and marketing are butting heads
When you’ve got two definitions of what a sales-ready lead is, your scoring is bound to suffer. To avoid this, you’ve got to establish a collaborative effort between sales and marketing to erase ambiguities. It may take more than one session but it’s crucial to spend the extra time and effort to establish sales and marketing alignment. Not only will better-qualified leads make it through the cycle, you’ll be more able to quickly adjust when you find trouble.
2. Highly scored leads aren’t converting
It may be that your scoring system is advancing prospects too quickly. Possible causes for this can range from industry shifts (i.e. tightening budgets) to the team loosening scoring guidelines to meet pipeline demands.If highly scored leads aren’t converting, take a moment to see if there are any commonalities to work from and revisit how leads are marked as ‘hot’.
3. Leads are getting kicked back from sales
If sales is sending more leads back to the marketing team, marked as ‘not ready’, this is another sign that the lead scoring system needs fine tuning. You may have chosen standards that give a false positive about sales readiness. Whenever sales kicks back a significant number of leads, it’s time to connect the marketing and sales team, review the current system and further refine the lead scoring process.
4. Revenue predictions are not being met
The best lead scoring provides accurate revenue predictions. If you think you are generating the right number of qualified leads but predictions are not being met, it’s time to talk to your sales people and discover why those leads aren’t living up to expectations. Clarification of revenue predictions is key, not only to supply management with the numbers they need, but also to prove to sales that your demand generation programs provide value.
As in most high-stakes situations, careful preparation pays off. If you follow lead scoring best practices using input from both marketing and sales, you will follow up with prospects at just the right time, i.e. just before they enter your – or your competitor’s – sales pipeline, leading to better ROI from the marketing programs that generated the prospects in the first place.
For further information on lead scoring best practices, check out this Definitive Guide To Lead Scoring e-book.