Lead scoring for B2B sales is must

Unlike B2C companies, B2B firms have to contend with much longer sales cycles. To make the best use of marketing and sales efforts, companies need to establish lead nurturing and scoring practices to ensure sales reps aren’t calling prospects who are not ready to buy. B2B firms need to start incorporating Internet marketing methods into their lead scoring procedures.

Marketing automation can help B2B companies improve lead scoring and refine their sales funnels. Although marketers sometimes estimate when prospects are ready to be handed over to the sales team based on behaviors, the powerful analytic capabilities of an online marketing system can read these indication and predict readiness, according to a press release from Lattice Engines, a mobile application development company.

Automating marketing for better sales practices

Both marketing and sales teams can benefit from marketing automation. For example, if high numbers of customers request free trials each month, salespeople need to know which prospects are the most ready to negotiate. Previously, marketers may have read the action of requesting a trial as a sign that leads were ready to talk to a sales rep. Using marketing automation as a lead scoring tool can increase the accuracy and give a better real-time indication.

However, most current lead scoring models are actually based on how marketers feel about where leads are in the sales cycle, the press release said. This leaves sales readiness to guesswork, which can decrease the number of deals the sales team is able to close.  Lead scoring through marketing automation uses statistical evidence, and this can improve the quality of leads the sales team receives, which improves sales effectiveness and creates better sales and marketing alignment.

Currently, some marketers are not employing lead scoring because there are barriers to gaining the most value. Companies did not have real insight into what constitutes true buying behavior and it can take too long to generate a score. However, marketing automation can consolidate this customer data to give B2B marketers a more accurate picture in a shorter period of time. Marketing automation can be integrated with customer relationship management systems so the platform can pull customer data from this source to form a total picture. Lead scoring helps marketers determine sales readiness, which can streamline the process for reps.

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