immixGroup helps software companies sell to the government through various partnerships. While we have had many of our partners for several years, we are continuously looking to grow our portfolio and bring in new suppliers.
We regularly reach out to our prospects through marketing campaigns, networking events, and call campaigns, but we weren’t able to track the true level of engagement with our prospective suppliers. This made it difficult for our Corporate Sales Manager to have meaningful conversations with prospects while trying to show the value of partnering with our company.
Strategy for Tackling the Challenge
After taking the B2B: Lead Scoring course, I began working with our Corporate Sales Manager on updating and developing a more targeted lead scoring model. First, we needed to do a content audit to get a sense of our existing online resources and how they could be re-purposed for campaigns.
Once we had an idea of our content inventory and decided their level of importance, we needed to determine profile aspects, such as titles, company, and job level, and which of our marketing efforts are most important. We also wanted to determine how those actions should be scored.
When scoring on a contact’s profile, we determined which companies would be considered Strategic (100%), Tier 1 (70%), and Tier 2 (50%) based on email address domain, while also looking at specific words contained in the contact’s title. For example, Federal, Public Sector, SLED, as well as their title normalized, such as Vice President, Director, or Manager. For engagement, we looked at how resources on our website performed, such as downloads for whitepapers, sign-ups for on-demand webinars, our in-person events versus our online events. We also looked at email opens, clicks, forms submitted, as well as website visits. All of these elements were assigned appropriate weights for scoring.
To determine which leads get passed to our Corporate Sales Manager, we needed to evaluate the different levels within the lead scoring model and decide which scores were of most value to us. We drafted an action chart showing the explicit criteria and the implicit criteria, as well as a chart to show which leads needed immediate follow-up, which could use a little more nurturing from our sales team, and which needed further qualification from marketing and sales.
After running the updated lead scoring model, we moved our prospective suppliers to our “cold list,” then re-engaged them through newsletter campaigns, invitations to our webinars on sales opportunities within the government, and other nurture campaigns. Eventually, we were able to identify which suppliers were serious about cultivating a relationship and were still interested in working with us in the future.
Below is an example of the Lead Scoring Dashboard our Corporate Sales Manager uses. This dashboard allows access vital information, such as their job title, company, as well as the engagement associated with the prospect's lead score providing our Corporate Sales manager with the means to pursue a potential partnership with them.
Through our lead scoring model, we saw a few prospective suppliers were still engaging with us, even after they had decided they were not ready for to use our platform for distribution in the public sector. However, they kept showing up on our hot leads list, so we kept a close eye on them and eventually re-engaged with them as clients in January.
Another prospective supplier was also signed in January after our Corporate Sales Manager was able to reference the level of their engagement with us through our lead scoring model. This allowed him to show them exactly what their sales teams were downloading, such as webinars and whitepapers, and how our company has been providing them value, which directly translated into acquiring this supplier as a client. As a result of acquiring these two suppliers through the help of our lead scoring model, we are projecting to surpass our annual goal by over 100% in FY16.
Tip: When creating or updating a lead scoring model, have your goals clearly outlined and make sure your marketing efforts and goals align with the your sales team. It is important to have everyone in agreement on the level of importance of your marketing efforts, profile aspects, and level of contact engagement before you begin to ensure accurate scoring in the future. When possible, leverage the Topliners community for creative ideas on ramping up your nurture campaigns, social sharing, and challenges or difficulties others have experienced while implementing lead scoring and how they were able overcome them.
Having this lead scoring model has provided us with great insight into what our prospective suppliers are interested in and through which avenues they’re engaging with us the most. It is a model that is constantly being updated as we learn more about our audience and as our company grows but has so far proven extremely beneficial.
Helpful Academy Courses:
- B2B: Lead Scoring
- B2B: Blind Form Submits
- B2B: Effective Marketing with Custom Objects
- B2B: Personalizing Campaigns
- Lead Scoring: Guide for Modern Marketers
- Lead Nurturing: Guide for Modern Marketers
- Digital Body Language: Reading and Responding to Online Digital Buying Behaviors