Fewer leads can actually generate more revenue for your business. It sounds crazy, right? For many businesses, Marketing is responsible for generating as many leads as possible in order for Sales to sell to more and more customers. So if you were to cut back on the number of leads you fed to Sales, then you would probably assume that Sales wouldn’t be able to sell as many deals. But what marketers fail to realize is that sending more and more leads to Sales can actually make them less productive. A portion of the leads marketers generate are usually either not yet ready for a sale or not a great fit for the product. And it takes time for your sales team to sort through this junk in order to identify the goldfish. And when you increase the number of leads Marketing generates for Sales, you increase both the number of goldfish and the junk, and you can actually make Sales less productive, since it will take them more time to pinpoint the leads that are actually ripe for a sale.
What is a Marketing Qualified Lead?
Implementing a Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL) strategy can help improve the efficiency and productivity of your Sales organization by feeding them fewer, higher quality leads. An MQL is a lead that is more likely to become a customer as compared to other leads based on their activity before converting. As a marketing organization, if you only serve up the MQLs, then Sales spends less time searching for those MQLs in their typical process and more time selling to the goldfish you supply, thus closing more deals.
How to set MQL for your business?
Organization to organization the MQL changes, the most important thing is to do your own internal analysis of your leads and customers in order to create business definition of your MQL.
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Step 1: Analyze your data
To dig deep in your data is the first step to define your Marketing Qualified Lead. Start creating a list of all activities a lead can complete before becoming a customer. Your list should include things like requesting a demo or trail of your product, visiting certain pages on your website or downloading certain piece of content. While analyzing these activities, you will need to look at items with higher close rates. Closed-loop marketing analytics will really help to do this complicated analysis for you! For example, if you are looking at the close rate of leads that request a trial, you’ll want to take all the leads took a trial and became customers, divided by the total number of leads that took a trial. This will give a close rate for the trial activity.
Step 2: Compare Close Rates, and Determine a Threshold
Once you determine all the close rates for your conversion events, compare them against one another. At this point, you’ll want to focus on the top events with the highest close rates. From this, try to eyeball a threshold close rate that separates the men from the boys. Most of your close rates may be close to 1%, but there may be 3-5 that are closer to 5%. These top-closing events will define your MQL. Every lead that converts on one of these events now qualifies as an MQL for your business.
Step 3: Implement Your MQL strategy
Once you’ve determined what an MQL looks like for your company, then you can start to analyze the volume of leads that complete these MQL activities. If the volume of MQLs is sustainable for the number of sales reps in your organization, then only deliver those leads to Sales. They should be able to close more deals with these leads than from the entire lead flow. If in case the lead volume of your MQLs is not enough to support your sales team, then as a marketer you must start focusing on generating more MQLs.
So now start implementing a Marketing Qualified Lead strategy for your business for better ROI.