The Emergence and Importance of 3-D Lead Scoring

Posted by | January 02, 2013 | | No Comments

Retrieved from dmconfidential.com, originally posted on December 24, 2012.

Have you purchased movie tickets recently? It seems that moviegoers are often forced to choose between the 3-D and regular versions of the movie they want to see. Well, marketers who deal with scoring leads might be compelled to make a similar decision, too.

While traditional lead scoring deals with two layers, the emerging trend of 3-D lead scoring brings another factor into the mix. We spoke with Troy Burk, CEO and founder of Right On Interactive, to learn more about 3-D lead scoring, along with how social media and mobile have affected the sales lifecycle, among other topics.

How would you describe Right On Interactive in one sentence?

Right On Interactive delivers a lifecycle marketing automation solution that helps organizations win, keep and grow more customers.

How would you explain what Right On Interactive is plain terms?

Organizations know that in order to grow they need to create engaged customers. The responsibility for customer acquisition, retention and growth is shared throughout the organization. Right On Interactive’s customer lifecycle marketing solution provides a blueprint for teams, including marketing, sales and customer success, that shows where customers are in their relationship with the brand so communication is more relevant. The software builds an engagement profile based on three dimensions: demographics, behavior and lifecycle stage.

How has lead generation changed in the past year or so?

Lead scoring hasn’t kept pace with today’s sophisticated relationship marketing initiatives. Scoring a prospect’s profile fit and engagement level does not reveal anything about the stage of the relationship they’re in with the brand. Two prospects can have similar lead scores while being at different stages in the customer lifecycle. To address this issue, Right On Interactive adds a third layer of scoring, which focuses on the stage of the relationship.

We recently featured your comments in an article on lead scoring. In our correspondence, you mentioned the emergence of 3-D lead scoring. Can you explain what this is?

3-D (three-dimensional) lead scoring adds depth to how marketers and sales professionals view customers and prospects, and delivers a more accurate picture of their readiness to buy. Here’s how it works. Traditional lead scoring provides marketers a score to help determine which targets are worthy of a marketer’s time and other resources. These scores are based on two points of data:

  • Demographics: These points are earned by prospects based on factors such as their title, company revenue and number of employees. Organizations decide which factors are the most important based on the profile associated with profitable customers.
  • Behavior: Behavior points are assigned when a prospect interacts with the company or brand. This can include visiting a website, downloading a white paper, and clicking on a link and participating in a webinar, among others.

Points are tallied and the higher the score, the more likely the prospect is actively engaged in the buying process and should be routed to sales as a marketing-qualified lead.

3-D scoring adds a third layer to lead scoring. This layer, the lifecycle stage, allows marketers to group prospects into different stages of the relationship, which gives marketers a more precise understanding of the prospect and enables more personalized communications.

Some of the benefits of 3-D scoring include:

  • Easier segmentation of groups: 3-D scoring gives marketers insight into stages of engagement and enables them to easily segment prospects in the stages that are most ready to buy and to nurture those in other stages. Marketers can quickly adjust the definition of the ideal customer, then automatically find more people that fit that description.
  • Easier identification of trends: By categorizing people based on lifecycle stage, it’s easy to identify and act on trends. For example, marketers can identify common actions taken by all prospects in the qualified-prospect stage. They can then develop strategies to encourage prospects to take these same steps, thereby growing their marketing-qualified leads.
  • Easier testing of strategies: Since marketers can view groups of prospects based on any criteria (demographic or behavioral), it’s easier to do what-if analyses of strategies and messaging.
  • Easier midstream adjustments: The lifecycle layer allows marketers to quickly and nimbly incorporate key learnings as they happen.

 

How have social media and mobile affected the sales lifecycle, and how should companies take this into account when generating and scoring leads?
Most social media marketing solutions are “megaphone” applications that are designed to broadcast messages to prospects and customers. Right On Interactive is introducing a unique Twitter integration that actually allows marketers to apply lead-scoring technology to social media channels.

Marketers can customize the score for Twitter activity. For example, a marketer may want to give a high lead score to a prospect who sends a direct message or retweets company content on Twitter, while giving a lower score to someone who simply follows the company.

Right On Interactive also integrates with Foursquare, allowing marketers to engage with prospects and customers in real-time based on location. Additional social media platform integrations will be rolled out in 2013.

Right On Interactive offers its services in a long list of areas. Has the company noticed any of these services becoming more popular lately? If so, why do you think that is?

Organizations are becoming more aware of the importance that technology can play and is playing in helping their sales teams work smarter and accelerate results. You can see this most clearly in the increasing number of roles that are being added to do just this: sales enablement, marketing technologist and even customer lifecycle marketing manager. In the technology world, we see this type of trend time and again. It is a classic technology adoption curve.

Companies are seeing that early adopters of the technology are garnering great results, so they are quick to follow suit. Today there are 15 percent more searches for the term “lifecycle management” than a year ago.

From the company’s experiences, what is the biggest challenge facing its clients these days?

Just 15 percent of leads are sourced through marketing, according to research by Sirius Decisions, and these are the sole focus of traditional marketing automation solutions. Right On Interactive’s customer lifecycle marketing solution gives companies insight into 100 percent of revenue sources, including those that come from outside the marketing funnel, such as upsells and referrals.

The biggest challenge is how to quickly understand and shift a company’s marketing and selling, along with the changing way that consumers and companies are buying. So much is done on the Web and social now. Companies that are able to understand, adapt and leverage mass amounts of information in order to move prospective buyers along in their buying journey win. Those that keep focusing on this once a prospect becomes a customer really win because they are keyed into the holy grail of customer referrals.

What do you expect to be the biggest trend for the industry in 2013?

The way we make buying decisions continues to change. Prospective buyers are looking to find new and better ways to educate themselves along the buying journey. Social media will continue to be a channel that helps to connect people with information and companies that can quickly understand and leverage this new modality will do well. Right On Interactive was innovative with its thinking around lifecycle marketing. In the last few months, we started to see other marketing organizations follow our lead and move away from “revenue”-focused conversations to ones focused on customer lifecycle marketing.

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Troy Burk is the CEO and founder of Right On Interactive. He is a recognized thought leader and speaker on the topics of lifecycle marketing, marketing automation, lead scoring and nurturing, and email marketing. Troy earned his bachelor’s degree from Ball State University. He lives in Indianapolis with his wife and three children where he serves on the Greater Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce’s Membership Marketing Committee and is involved with youth sports.

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