7 Best Practices for Lead Management

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7 Best Practices for Lead Management

Sales teams are always looking for ways to increase their conversion rates and close more deals. However, it can be difficult to do this when you don’t have a solid lead management system in place.

In this article, we will discuss seven best practices for lead management that will help your sales team close more deals and increase revenue. Implementing these practices will help you establish a well-organized process for managing leads and ensure that potential customers are turned into loyal buyers.

Quick Takeaways

  • Lead generation processes that are high-performance will improve lead quality, boost revenue, expand the number of leads, and enhance ROI.
  • Sales teams must capture leads effectively, score them, and nurture qualified leads that are not yet ready to buy.
  • Not all contacts are born equal and not all contacts are the right decision-maker. A well-implemented lead management tool will help your team qualify these leads, so they only spend valuable time speaking to people within an organization with buying power.

What does a leads manager do?

A lead manager is responsible for the entire lead management process, from generating leads to converting them into sales. In order to be successful, a lead manager must have a deep understanding of the sales process and know how to use various lead generation and lead nurturing tactics.

What is a lead?

A lead is a person or organization that has the potential to become a customer. In order for a lead to be qualified, they must exhibit certain characteristics that indicate they are ready and willing to buy.

There are two main types of leads. MQLs and SQLs.

A marketing qualified lead (MQL) is a solid lead identified by the marketing department and believed to have a higher chance of becoming a customer than other leads.

A sales qualified lead (SQL) is a term used to refer to a potential customer who has been researched and validated.

What does lead management mean?

Lead management is the process of generating, scoring, nurturing, and converting leads into customers. The goal of lead management is to help sales teams close more deals and increase revenue.

A lead can be defined as any person or organization that has the potential to become a customer. Lead generation is the process of generating leads, and lead nurturing is the process of developing relationships with leads and providing them with information that will help them make a purchasing decision.

The lead management process begins when a lead is created. A lead can be generated through many different channels, including online ads, referrals, website, LinkedIn outreach. Once a lead is generated, it must be distributed to the sales team. The lead will then go through a process of scoring and nurturing before it is finally converted into a customer.

What is lead scoring?

Lead scoring is the process of assigning a numeric value to a lead in order to determine their level of interest and fit for your product or service. Lead scoring helps sales teams prioritize which leads to contact and when.

There are many different factors that can be used to score a lead, but some common ones include:

  • The lead’s demographics like location, age, company size, departament, industry or job title or job seniority
  • Their behaviour like email opens, subscriptions, demo call booked, free trial account created, content downloads or social media engagements
  • Their budget & timeline
  • Their level of interest
  • Whether they are the decision factor

The main features of a lead management tool:

Lead capture: one of the main sources of capturing leads are the forms on your website or landing pages. But there are also other sources like events, webinars, partnerships, LinkedIn Sales Navigator or other lead generation or demand generation sources.

Lead validation: lead validation is the process of verifying that a lead is real and has the potential to become a customer. This can be done through manual processes like calling the lead or using a lead verification tool. Idealy, a good lead management tool has both features available and ready to use.

Lead assignment: the leads assignment is the feature that assignes the right leads to the sales reps. This can be done manually or automatically based on certain criteria like lead score, lead source, geolocation or lead type.

Lead scoring: leads scoring feature is used to prioritize leads and determine which ones are ready to be contacted by sales, based on the level of interest shown by the potential customer, with the help of the previews interactions with the brand’s materials.

Lead nurturing: lead nurturing is the feature with the help of which the sales and marketing teams develop meaningful relationships with leads and provide them with information that will help them make a purchasing decision.

Conversion of the leads: lead management tool should have in its structure a lead conversion feature, to transform the lead into an opportunity and then into a customer, as fast, easy and efficient as possible.

Reporting & analytics: reporting and analytics features are essential in lead management, because they help you track your progress and performance and understand what’s working and what needs to be improved.

Now that we’ve reviewed lead management and the main features of a lead management tool, let’s take a look at the seven best practices for lead management.

Best Practice #01: Define your ideal customer profile

The first step to effective lead management is to define your ideal customer profile. This will help you attract the right leads and score them appropriately. When defining your ideal customer, be sure to consider their:

  • Location
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Interests
  • Job title or seniority
  • Company size & Industry
  • Company Budget
  • Timeline

Best Practice #02: Use lead capture forms on your website and landing pages to attract potential clients

The second best practice for lead management is to use lead capture forms on your website and landing pages. By doing this, you can collect information about potential customers and score them accordingly. Be sure to include lead capture forms on all of your high-traffic pages, such as your home page, pricing page, and blog.

 

Keep in mind that the number of leads captured is directly proportional to the sales made. So, if you want to increase sales, be sure to use lead capture forms on as many pages as possible.

 

Best Practice #03: Use lead validation to verify that a lead is real and has the potential to become a customer

The third best practice for lead management is to use lead validation to verify that a lead is real and has the potential to become a customer. There are many ways to validate a lead, such as calling the lead or using a lead verification tool.

 

Lead validation is important because it helps you avoid wasting time on leads that are not interested in your product or service.

 

Best Practice #04: Use lead scoring to assign the right leads to the right sales reps

The fourth best practice for lead management is to use lead assignment to assign the right leads to the right sales reps. This can be done manually or automatically based on certain criteria, such as lead score, lead source, geolocation, or lead type.

 

Lead assignment is important because it helps you ensure that each lead is contacted by the most appropriate sales rep.

 

Best Practice #05: Use lead nurturing to develop relationships with leads and provide them with information that will help them make a purchasing decision

The fifth best practice for lead management is to use lead nurturing to develop relationships with leads and provide them with information that will help them make a purchasing decision. Lead nurturing can be done manually or automatically through lead nurturing software.

 

Lead nurturing is important because it helps you build trust with leads and keep them informed about your product or service.

 

Best Practice #06: Use lead conversion to transform the lead into an opportunity and then into a customer

The sixth best practice for lead management is to use lead conversion to transform the lead into an opportunity and then into a customer. The basic idea of lead conversion is that the leads should always be moving towards the path of conversion. To achieve that, assigning a follow-up task is a recommended practice to ensure that leads do not remain leads for an extended period.

Lead conversion is important because it helps you turn leads into customers.

 

Best Practice #07: Use lead management software to automate the lead management process

The seventh and final best practice for lead management is to use lead management software to automate the lead management process. Lead management software can automate as many lead management tasks as possible, such as lead capture, lead assignment, lead nurturing, lead conversion, reminders, and lead reporting.

 

A good lead management software is important because it helps you save time and resources by automating lead management tasks.

Some of the best SaaS lead management tools

  1. Salesflare: it is used by thousands of small and medium-sized businesses that sell to other businesses. It’s top-ranked across review platforms and is the #1 CRM software on Product Hunt.
  2. HubSpot CRM & Sales Hub: HubSpot’s main selling point is offering an all-in-one solution, including marketing, sales, service and operations.
  3. Freshworks: Freshworks’ main selling point is its feature depth. It has also managed to offer this range of functionality through an easier-to-use interface.
  4. Pipedrive: Pipedrive is an easy-to-use and easy-to-setup lead management software for small businesses. It can become quite expensive rather fast, but if you are serious about your lead management software, it’s worth a test-drive.
  5. Salesforce CRM: Salesforce is by far the biggest leads management software in the world, controlling about 20% of the market in 2021. It was founded in 1999 in California by an ex-Oracle executive.
  6. Zoho CRM: Zoho is a true household name in the industry, so we couldn’t omit them from this ranking. Zoho launched its small business CRM product in 2005 and has historically been positioning itself as a cheaper alternative to Salesforce.