Lead management is a complex process that requires a lot of effort and work.
But without leads, no business can exist, so it’s clear why many companies mark this process as their top priority.
BigCommerce provides a simple definition of lead management as the process of acquiring and managing leads (potential customers) until the point where they make a purchase.
First of all, it’s important to know that there are qualified and unqualified leads. Qualified leads are those leads that have shown the most interest in your business and which are more likely to become your customers.
When generating leads, it is inevitable that there will be those who are unqualified, but those that you need to be focused on are qualified leads.
Although lead management is a complicated process, there are principles that can help you convert more leads into sales.
In this article, you will find out which are 5 lead management best practices that will help you to convert more leads and score more sales.
Lead management best practice #1 – Define your ideal buyer persona
To successfully attract people that may become your customers, you need to know who to attract. You need to know who are you talking to.
Although you may have approximately envisioned the image of a person who would be your ideal customer, it will not be enough.
Your ideal buyer is in fact representative of your entire target group.
The reason why you should define one person instead of the whole group lies in the fact that it is easier to imagine and conceive that one person than it would be taking the whole group into consideration.
When creating the ideal buyer persona, consider the following:
- How old he is?
- Where he hangs out?
- What does he like?
- What he doesn’t like?
- What are his interests?
- What’s his level of education?
- What are his most common pain problems?
- What are the desired solutions?
- What online platforms he visits?
- What’s the best way to reach out to him?
- What’s his budget/financial situation?
- What’s his location
And a lot of other things – the more you define it, the easier it will be for you to target your leads later.
You can also create multiple versions of the ideal customer and then target different audiences, thus testing and finding out who your primary audience is.
When you find out exactly who you are talking to, it will be much easier to create both content and communication, as your audience will become much clearer and closer.
This will further result in building strong connections between you as a seller and your audience as customers.
Here’s how lemlist – one of the Mailshake alternatives defines ideal buyer persona:
Lead management best practice #2 – Design your marketing and sales process
For everything to go as it should, you need to organize your marketing and sales process. They will depend on what you are selling and what you want to achieve, so they should be defined accordingly.
Staging will allow you to stay on track. It will be easier for you to pay attention to details and see if you are following the route that was planned.
It is extremely important that you familiarize your team and departments with each segment so that they could know what they need to do at the particular moment rather than learning about the process when it is already starting to take place.
These are the most important processes in your business that the survival and progress of the business itself depend on, so they should be treated as such.
Make sure you have backup plans just in case.
Also, let the team know that these are dynamic processes and that sometimes you may need to change things on the go.
With your readiness and responsiveness, you can prevent excessive leakage of leads from the sales funnel.
For example, if you see that a particular advertisement is not showing the expected results, it is better to stop it and modify the parameters to see if the changes will have a more positive impact.
Lead management best practice #3 – Create engaging content
Having quality content is one of the lead management best practices for collecting leads. People come to your sales channels primarily because of the quality content that has to catch their attention and make them interested.
Quality content must meet at least one of the following criteria:
- To entertain
- To educate
- To inform
- To solve specific problems
It is ideal if it meets more than one or even all of these criteria. This way, you will absolutely meet the expectations of your leads.
But of course, you also have to pay attention to presenting it visually in a great and clear way.
Besides that, it is important to be consistent. If you publish content at large time intervals, your leads will forget about you which is certainly not what you want.
Some general (and by our experience the best) rule is to publish at least once a week. Of course, if you have time and budget for more than that – that’s also a great idea!
It is imperative that you be constantly present and use website metrics to monitor how people respond to your content.
Content types are different, and you should take advantage of those that fit with your product or service. These can be:
- Textual content
- Video clips
- Online courses
Lead management best practice #4 – Generate more leads with popups
One of the ways you can increase interest in your leads is to create pop-up windows. If used properly, they will retain leads and encourage them to accomplish the goals you set.
You can set pop-ups to appear when:
- leads enter your website
- when they want to exit
- when they spend some time on the page
- when they click on a link
- and similar.
Pop-ups should also be visually appealing, so try a tool like Poptin that is sure to get visitors’ attention and make your website even more interesting.
There’re different types of popups based on their intention, trigger and context. Some of the widely used ones are:
- Newsletter signup popups – great for collecting new leads
- Exit-intent popups – triggered when someone wants to leave your website. Perfect for special deals or content offerings.
- Scroll-triggered popups – popups that are shown whenever someone scrolls for example 80% of the page – it may mean that he’s interested in the content and that can be the right moment to offer something.
Lead management best practice #5 – Make a lead nurturing strategy
Lead management also requires lead nurturing. When you collect leads, you will need an effective lead nurturing campaign.
Marketo defines the lead nurturing process as the process of developing relationships with buyers at every stage of the sales funnel, and through every step of the buyer’s journey. It focuses on marketing and communication efforts on listening to the needs of prospects and providing the information and answers they need.
Your leads may not be ready to start buying the product or service you offer right away, but that doesn’t mean they won’t become your customers in the future.
That’s why it is important that you keep in touch with them and thus create trust-based connections.
For example, you can create an email campaign. To collect their email addresses, post a subscription form on your website. You can do this with the help of the Premio’s subscribe forms plugin or Poptin’s popups and collect their contacts most effectively.
When sending emails, make sure they are as personalized as possible so you can easily connect with your leads and build relationships.
Do not overburden them with messages, but specify a specific period when you will send these.
Your email campaign should be an opportunity to offer your leads added value, and you will do so through quality content.
Another lead management best practice example of how to maintain communication is using the chat plugin. You can try Chaty which allows you to communicate with leads through their favourite channels.
Provide them with all the answers to their questions and they will surely appreciate it.
Lead management best practice #6 – Analyze and track your results
Tracking results should not be neglected. Only if you monitor your results you will know whether things are going as planned or not.
Analyzing results will give you insight into what to keep and what to change. Find out how long it takes for your leads to complete a specific goal or make the purchase itself.
Insights into finance are also of utmost importance. You need to know how much your return on investment is and how much it is worth.
Quality and comprehensive analysis require the collaboration of the entire team. So let each member of the team know that monitoring the results is mandatory and that they should take it as one of their most important tasks.
The feedback you collect will be of great importance for any further planning.
While it is important to earn more than you invested, it does not mean that monitoring should be neglected.
Also, test different techniques and methods. You will never know until you check. Maybe some technique would prove to be even better than the one you already used.
On the other hand, be sure that your competition is following everything, even you. If you get blinded by success and start ignoring metrics, it can easily become your biggest mistake. So don’t let that happen.
The bottom line
As you can see, these lead management best practices can help you to convert more leads and score more sales.
However, once you have mastered these 5 best lead management best practices you will see how well everything fits and you will be able to come up with new ideas and methods.
Certainly, converting leads requires a lot of things, but it is far from ‘the mission impossible’.
If you see that something is not working as intended, make some changes, try out and create various strategies that will eventually lead you to more customers than could ever be expected.
People will surely recognize the quality and value of your offers, just show it the right way and keep building strong relationships.
We are sure that you are now ready to implement these practices and start converting more and more leads every day!
Aazar Ali Shad is an entrepreneur, growth marketer (not a hacker), and a seasoned SaaS guy.
He loves writing content and sharing what he learned with the world.
You can follow him on Twitter @aazarshad or aazarshad.com