What is Lead Scoring and How to Score Leads Effectively

As your business grows and the number of inbound leads increases, your sales team is likely to start feeling overwhelmed with the volume of incoming leads they have to work through. While having too many leads is not a bad problem to have, adopting certain automated processes into your CRM can help support and streamline their efforts. This is where lead scoring comes into place.

What is Lead Scoring?

The goal of lead scoring is to help identify leads that are ready to have a serious conversation with your sales team about moving forward with your offering. More technically speaking, it is the process of assigning numerical values to each lead you generate for your business. This number represents the lead’s fitness and interest in your product or service offering.

Leads can be scored based on a number of factors, including their professional attributes or their level of engagement with your digital assets. This is typically divided into three categories: demographic, firmographic and behavioral data. More mature leads can then be prioritized and responded to in a timely manner, therefore increasing your conversion rates.

Establishing Your Scoring Criteria

When deciding on your lead scoring criteria, it’s important to have your ideal customer profile in mind. This refers to the type of company or persona that would benefit the most from your product or service offering.

For B2B businesses, some demographic factors such as industry, company size, annual revenue could have more weight than others. In comparison, for B2C customers, demographic attributes such as age, location or financial standing could be of more importance. Taking a look at your past customers and their attributes would help you determine the criteria that best fits your business.

When it comes to behavioral data, having insight into your marketing activity and conversion data would also be helpful in determining which type of marketing activity should be assigned a larger numerical value (email marketing, webinar attendance, etc.). In other words, how often do these marketing activities lead to a sale? Once you have this information, it can be easily translated into your lead scoring model.

Determining your Scoring Threshold

The scoring threshold refers to the number of points a lead acquires to signal sales-readiness. When a lead’s score reaches this threshold, they are officially considered a marketing qualified lead and are passed on to sales for more personalized outreach.

This can be a tricky process and will likely require some testing after implementing your lead score. If the threshold is too low, this means that the leads are premature and are not ready to have a conversation about your product or service yet. If it’s too high, your sales team may be missing out on qualified leads and losing them to a competitor.

Taking a look at historical data can be helpful in determining your threshold as certain behaviors like filling out a specific form may automatically result in reaching the threshold.

Optimizing Your Scoring Model

Lead scoring is not a process you set in place and forget about. You should regularly revisit and optimize your scoring criteria and threshold based on the feedback you receive from your sales team. Your sales reps will be able to determine the quality of their leads pretty quickly, so having a constructive conversation and transparency with them will ensure that your lead scoring model is working as it should.

Last Thoughts

Effective lead scoring allows sales reps to work smarter not harder and focus on prospects that are informed and ready to talk to them about your offering. Need help with implementing a lead scoring model that works for your business? Reach out to our Marketing Automation experts and let’s talk!

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Samantha Warren is a digital marketing expert with over six years of experience in crafting 360° campaigns that marry creativity with strategy. She has helped clients in a variety of industries, including e-commerce, technology, and healthcare, to reach new heights with their marketing initiatives.