Quantity versus quality leads

Marketers strive to get more and more leads. The underlying logic is since it is customers who provide revenue, and leads bring in customers, more leads would mean more customers and hence more revenues.

However, more does not always mean better. The quality of the lead or the revenue a lead ultimately brings in matters more. Gathering more low quality leads, who may bring in low to moderate revenues and maybe one-off customers, may sap the marketing and sales teams of their energy. On the other hand, getting a few leads who make big-ticket or repeat purchases means the marketer gets more by doing less. The marketing dollar in the latter scenario generates a much higher return on investment.

In today’s hyper-competitive business environment, marketers cannot afford to be choosy or selective by ignoring smaller opportunities and concentrating their activities only on big-ticket customers. That is a path to disaster. In any case, there is little insight into whether a customer would buy more or would be a return customer, at the start of their marketing lifecycle. That is, if you don’t have lifecycle marketing.

Sophisticated marketers use lifecycle marketing to…

  1. Tweak the analytics engine and score leads based on a prospect’s promise. The marketer can identify the traits and characteristics of big-ticket customers and loyal customers and try to identify the same traits and characteristics in new prospects. The marketer can then prioritize engagement based on the most promising leads, and work down the list.
  2. Have specific revenue goals. Many marketers aim to generate or convert a specific number of leads. If such leads do not bring in much revenue, the effort is wasted, even when the objective is fulfilled. A far better idea is to have a specific revenue target and work on lead generation and conversion with the target in mind.
  3. Save leads that are not sales ready for another day. Keep in the back burner prospects that are not sales ready and focus all their energies on the prospects who show promise, or show realistic signs of conversion.

In a highly competitive world, all functions/departments are hard-pressed to show returns. A three-pronged approach of having specific revenue goals, focusing on promising leads, and prioritizing sales ready leads is sure to work wonders.