Posted in: Digital marketingLast update: 15/09/17
You think you’re on the right track. You’ve defined your Inbound Marketing strategy and your leads keep increasing. You regularly energize your community, your website and blog forms are going smoothly and your contacts database is growing all the time. And yet your sales are stagnant. What’s going on?
Lots of users are interested in your brand, products and promotions. But their interest doesn’t seem to translate into an increase in sales. This probably means that your Inbound Marketing strategy is not as accurate as you’d thought: you’re hitting the target, but it’s not the right target.
How well do you know your clients? Do you know who your target audience is? Have you carried out the exercise of identifying the three or four buyer persona who represent all your customer types? OK, so let’s identify your most unqualified leads: those who are in your database but who are unlikely to become customers of your brand.
You should draw a distinction between the different types of leads. Here are some examples:
- Leads who advance at a slower-than-expected pace through the sales funnel.
- Leads who you should really rule out because they are not interested in your product. They are distorting your data and generating more work than is necessary.
- You should be patient with cold leads. They will put your inbound strategy to the test. A lot of time may pass between the moment they become sure of their need and the moment they decide on a specific brand or product. This also depends a great deal on the sector. Some products require more market research to be carried out by the consumer, so bear that in mind.
- It’s also useful to know if your new leads are already customers of your competitors and if they approached you out of curiosity or with a real intention to use your services instead. Either way, they are top-quality leads for your business; just be aware that the nurturing period will be longer, owing to the costs of changing.
How to decide whether your leads are right for your brand.
To identify false leads – the ones you must free yourself from to focus on those who are really worth the effort – you should speak to the contacts in your database; establish a plan to obtain information from your current leads to help you classify them. It’s possible that you already have some of this data thanks to your lead generating actions, but you may not have all of it.
Here is an example of the information you could collect from your leads to help you classify them and identify false leads:
- Place of residence.
- Family status.
- What do you do in your free time?
- What are your hobbies?
- Level of engagement with the brand.
- Employed or unemployed.
- Employment sector.
- Position in company.
- Level of job satisfaction.
- Social networks maintained.
- Level of connection.
- Most-used social networks.
- Promotions participated in.
- Purchase online?
- Purchase of competitors’ products.
When it comes to identifying high-quality leads, and discarding false ones, the key is to establish the crucial information that will enable you to identify them immediately. There is no generic formula for this. Instead, you must carry out an analysis within your project of the information that is most crucial for your strategy.
Example 1. Business B2B
If your company offers accounting services to other businesses, you could rule out all leads who classify themselves as students since they have probably accessed your content for purely academic purposes.
Example 2. Business B2C
If your company is a small chain of five fruit shops in a single city then you could discard all leads who live outside the city and its surroundings.
As you can see, each case is different. But whatever your situation, you need to decide what type of information to collect and then include the appropriate fields in your registration forms, landing pages, sweepstakes and contests. In this way, you can focus your strategy on your high-quality leads.
So, what should I do with my false leads?
If you’ve begun your process of identifying false leads and have already found hundreds, don’t despair! In many cases, these leads can be nurtured over time before being reactivated and converted into real leads.
Returning to the first example, many accounting students will eventually end up joining or establishing accounting firms and may then need your company’s services. Similarly, in Example 2, your chain of fruit shops may decide to expand into new locations, at which point you’ll be able to use your previously discarded leads.
And that’s about it! But before we go, we’d like to stress the fact that by discarding your false leads –and focusing on your high-quality leads – you’ll ensure that your strategy is appropriate to the audience you’re aiming to reach. You’ll improve your Inbound Marketing strategy and obtain more sales through the sales funnel.
Publication date: 2017-09-15