This can include demographic factors like age, sex, and location, but it can also include more technical data such as product history or how customers interact with your website.
It follows that a lead qualification process is a plan to use a specific set of attributes to determine whether it will be worth your time and money to pursue a particular lead.
Then you can go about acquiring those leads and converting them into customers.
Let's say you run a sales automation platform whose main target is small businesses.
When examining leads, you see lead A is an established eCommerce company with 100 employees and lead B is undergoing a digital transformation, putting strain on their small team of 10.
It's clear that lead B might be an easier sell for an affordable sales automation solution.
Make no mistake – you need several elements to acquire leads and turn them into customers.
For example, you need a user-friendly website, high-quality invoicing software that comes with crucial features like recurring payments for repeat customers, and an excellent product that fills the needs of your target audience. But with the right lead qualification strategy, you’ll be able to identify the best leads for your marketing efforts.
Lead qualification is critical to ensuring you are maximizing your budget and your employees’ time.
Knowing which leads are most likely to convert will help you prioritize where you invest your time and energy.
It’s no good to waste valuable time and marketing budgets chasing prospects that are never going to buy.
Plus, it’s not just about gaining potential customers but gaining customers that will stick with you long term.
A strong lead qualification strategy will guide you to pursue leads that will turn into repeat customers and loyal brand enthusiasts.
How to convert quality leads
Identifying high-quality leads is one thing. Reaching them is another.
You’ll have to rely on time-tested marketing tactics and invest in the right tools for the job.
Many of these functions can be automated these days, making lead conversion more efficient and effective than ever.
1. Personalize your email campaigns
People respond more positively to emails that address them by name and use historical data to recommend specific productstailored to their interests or buying patterns.
This type of data-driven marketing is sure to attract leads efficiently and help you find customers who really need your services.
Even if your emails are sent automatically, you can still tailor the content towards greater engagement.
2. Start a chat on your website
Chatbots are great for some functions, such as helping with checkout and returns and fielding basic questions. But you will likely need a human if you want to upsell or cross-sell.
According to one study, 86% of people prefer talking with humans over bots. Chatbots are a
great way to provide 24/7 support, but be sure to have an option to escalate a chat to a human for more complicated cases. This way, your chatbots can be an asset, not a detriment to your lead conversion.
3. Develop personal relationships
You can do this in fairly simple ways, such as following up after inquiries or first purchases and asking for feedback in the form of reviews and surveys.
Then, use the information gathered to recommend products or even free resources that your prospects can benefit from.
This is a good way to show you care about things other than making a sale and that you invest in long-term relationships.
4. Reply quickly to inquiries
Nurture your high-quality leads by giving them the attention they deserve. Don’t forget the oft-cited five-minute rule.
Studies show that success rate decreases by 10x within the first five minutes of initial contact with a lead, so the first five minutes after a prospect reaches out are the most critical in cementing that relationship.
Whether it is an inquiry on your website chat feature or a web form requesting more information, you should promptly and gratefully respond to both prospects and customers.
Thank them for reaching out and offering as complete a response as possible.
Even if you don’t have an immediate solution, be transparent and tell them what you're doing to work on it.
5. Develop hesitant leads
It's not uncommon for even the most qualified leads to hold off on making a purchase initially.
It integrates with all the other tools you use, so all your systems are synced and you have real-time customer data at your fingertips. You can automate reminders and follow-ups to reduce no-shows and ensure your customers are always notified about changes.
With a tool like YouCanBook.me, your clients will appreciate how easy it is to schedule meetings with you or your colleagues, boosting their positive impression of your company.
5. AI opportunities
AI-powered tools can look at browsing behaviors, social media engagement, and order history to trigger emails tailored to the action or interest of a specific prospect.
This can aid with functions such as encouraging sign-up for newsletters, increasing customer touchpoints, and decreasing cart abandonment - all important parts of a lead conversion strategy.
Natural Language Processing is a subset of AI that allows computers to parse and interpret human communication (written and spoken).
NLP is hugely useful for lead qualification and conversion because it allows marketers to see what is being said about their brand and who is interacting positively with it.
NLP technology also allows for automated communication like chatbots and triggered email campaigns.
Determining which leads are most worth your time is the first step toward improving business profitability.
As you learn to identify and pursue your highest converting leads, you’ll also perfect conversion strategies to maximize your marketing bang for your buck.
Practicing your customer communication strategies will go a long way toward developing an effective, efficient lead qualification strategy.
And by aiding your communications with the right tools, you can improve your brand’s conversion rate and maximize the effectiveness of your marketing strategies.
"Without YouCanBook.Me, we would lose 25% of our new business contract value. There would just be too much friction."
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Sales Team relies on YouCanBookMe at every stage of their sales funnel. He embeds his booking page throughout his website and loves how he can customize it to match his brand perfectly.
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Nahla Davies is a software developer and tech writer. Before devoting her work full time to technical writing, she managed—among other intriguing things—to serve as a lead programmer at an Inc. 5,000 experiential branding organization whose clients include Samsung, Time Warner, Netflix, and Son
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